Proper pain management is important because there are various reasons why we experience pain – and it comes in different forms. When some people think about pain, their minds go to emotional pain – such as a loved one dying. Emotional pain can be felt as a result of the phase that a person mourns a loss.
Others have a varying interpretation of pain; when they hear pain management, their thoughts go to someone who’s suffering from a serious illness, for instance, if someone has cancer going through rough treatment processes and enduring the side effects of those treatments. Both of these pains are truly felt. They can make people act in a manner that alters their characters and require them to manage their pain. An example is, sometimes, physical pain management can cause tolerance and subsequent addiction to some meds for the pain or toxic drugs. On the other hand, psychological or emotional pain management can lead to addiction to these meds.
Ways of Managing Physical Ache
When a person undergoes dual diagnosis treatment, perhaps of dependence and a health illness that leads to actual, physical ache, that individual might be unable to obtain medication for pain management. A lot of the most widely prescribed pain relievers are particularly addictive.
Regularly administering such drugs for serious pain management, for example, might be an obstacle to how an addict recovers to live a sober life. As a result, you need to take action or theory underlying pain treatment.
Applying non-narcotic drugs is one such solution to pain management. According to research, some physicians are urging their colleagues to avoid prescribing opioid drugs because they cause much too much damage and don’t function like experts predicted them to. When this happens, seeking alternative drugs that function appropriately might just be the right choice here, especially for people that are under physical pain.
Besides asking your healthcare provider if the pain management strategy is for is acute or permanent pain or non-narcotics treatment options. Complementary and different treatments are available worldwide for people and they have been using such for centuries to treat daily pain as a result of a dangerous disease.
A government department run by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and discusses the outcomes of studies in an area, which was created a long time ago to assess the efficacy of pain management treatments.
Based on the report, alternative treatment plans for pain management have been effective in the past in addressing some kinds of terrible agony.
- Back pain
- Severe headaches
- Neck injuries
- Joint pain
- Pain in the nerves
- Pain from cancer treatment
Using different methods that are not medically inclined to pain management can range from psychological therapies like alternatives such as acupuncture or hypnosis. NCCAM research has shown that pain can heal differently to various medications than others. Acupuncture, for example, has been shown in one study to be an effective treatment for knee osteoarthritis and other pain management processes.
Patients that have chronic bowel syndrome, on the other hand, can take advantage of a variety of complementary pain management treatments, including hypnotherapy, essential oils, and yoga, according to experts.
Pain Management Workouts
Chronic ache in the body might result from fibromyalgia; such ache may be felt in the muscular tissues and bone joints, according to the US National Library of Medicine. As per a 2011 report, physical activity is proven to be a feasible solution to pain management for certain people. It was also discovered that people having pain all over their bodies and suffer from this illness can have better health and living conditions by participating in fitness routines.
Workouts must not include going to the gym every day for a long time to participate in tedious or monotonous activities. According to the study, each individual has to exercise in a way that is comfortable for them. Several forms of exercise are proven to assist with pain management.
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According to PubMed, Tai chi aids in pain management by treatment chronic pain through the method of addressing mind-body contact, meditation, and exercise. This ancient Chinese martial art began as a combat method in China centuries ago. Over time, the technique has evolved into a slow, rhythmic sequence of movements that are low impact and very graceful. Tai chi integrates these movements with breathing exercises and mind-body focus to help relieve pain and tension during pain management.
Yoga is another type of exercise that can be used to help with pain management. According to the American Yoga Association, the entire idea of yoga was created to make the body powerful and flexible so that individuals could physically sit still for long periods during meditation. Yoga combines breathing exercises as well as physical activity and can be adapted to each individual’s unique needs – this can greatly help in pain management.
Meditation is the practice of pain management that can be used in both yoga and tai chi. Both of these forms of exercise allow a person who is in pain to focus on something other than the pain, which may cause the pain to lessen or, in some cases, disappear completely. Keep in mind, however, that any exercise program should be discussed with your medical professional before you begin. Depending on the individual’s needs and desires, different levels of pain management and cardio-based exercises are available.
Importance of Pain Management
Pain management is important for improving quality of life. People are discouraged from doing things they like because they are in pain. It can make it difficult for them to communicate with others and spend time with them. It can affect their attitude and ability to think.
And pain can make it difficult to eat and sleep, exacerbating other symptoms. Patients and their loved ones are distressed and suffer as a result of pain. Pain can also raise blood pressure and heart rate, which can harm recovery. Pain management will help to alleviate discomfort.
While pain management can shield us by causing us to rest a wound or avoid doing anything, the reality of being in an uncontrolled state of pain is awful, terrifying, and can have a significant impact on our quality of life.
Unmanaged pain can cause:
- Slow healing
- Lower appetite
- Higher stress levels
- Depression and anxiety
Consequences of Unrelieved Pain
It turns out that when the pain caused by tissue injury is not relieved, pain management and healing are slowed. According to research, uncontrolled pain hurts our immune system. Continuous pain tends to impair our bodies’ ability to react to traumatic conditions like surgery, chemotherapy, and psychological stress.
Pain caused by nerve damage can also have far-reaching effects (neuropathic pain). This form of unrelieved pain continues to cause nervous system changes that lead to the development of chronic pain long after the nerve damage has healed.
We all know that pain management helps to bring enjoyment and peace to those living with a life-threatening illness, but pain management can also, help to prolong life by reducing the adverse effects that stress has on the body.
Myths Regarding Pain
Misconceptions about pain management can also obstruct pain management. Here are some common pain management misconceptions.
- Pain is Part of Life, you Must Therefore Endure it: Pain management and comfort are fair expectations. Pain doesn’t have to be accepted; instead, it can be handled to increase the standard of living.
- If a Pain Med is Swallowed Too Soon, it’ll Not Work when the Pain Gets Worse: When you treat pain earlier, it will become easier to manage. There are several ways of managing pain
- Narcotic Pain Medications are Addictive: The vast majority of people who take opioid (narcotic) pain relievers do not develop an addiction. Some people can develop tolerance (needing higher doses of the drug over time) or physical dependency (experience withdrawal symptoms if the medication is unexpectedly stopped), but all of these can be controlled
- Medication Practitioners are Too Busy; it is Not Wise to Disturb them: Nurses and physicians are indeed overworked, but you have the right to be pain-free, and they don’t want to see you in pain. Even if they seem to be overburdened, it is important to notify the nurse or doctor if the pain management is not effective
Management of Psychological Ache
We also equate emotional distress with great sorrow, heartbreak, or sadness. Of course, this form of ache can be felt, but a lot of individuals don’t know that the bodies follow the condition of the heart or mind. Significant misery and body ache, for example, are often related, according to the Mayo Clinic.
When someone is in misery or has one of the chronic depressive symptoms, they can go through body aches. But a person that suffers from a dangerous ache that stops such a person from regularly doing things with loved ones, can experience depression.
Antidepressant medications are one means of treating this form of emotional ache through pain management programs. Antidepressant drugs more often act on serotonin, which is considered to be a neurotransmitter. It has the potential to influence how a person feels; in addition to that, recent antidepressants make it impossible for the brain to take it to neurons. If you stop this activity or make it longer, serotonin stays involved for a longer time, which can improve a person’s mood. Some antidepressants target various brain chemicals during pain management treatment.
Anxiety is a form of emotional distress that some people feel. According to a Psychology Today report, the same medications used to treat sadness can be useful resources for treating stress have to be tried before trying other drug options.
For certain patients, using another form of drug might be appropriate. These medications, known as benzodiazepines, are not without risk, especially for those who are prone to sadness. Tolerance can develop when benzodiazepines are used for a prolonged time. Tolerance is a disorder that occurs when a person’s physical structure and brain get “accustomed” to drugs. The drugs’ effect gets reduced compared to the time the patient started taking them. To produce the same outcomes, that individual will have to consume more. Overuse might result in drug addiction; however, the existence of it doesn’t imply addiction. For this reason, someone who takes benzodiazepines for valid medical purposes such as pain management needs the guidance of a doctor.
Other Means of Pain Relief
Other methods of pain relief exist. These can be used in conjunction with pain relievers. Inquire with the hospice team about:
- Massage therapy
- Pet therapy
- Art therapy
- Hot and cold therapy
- Over-the-counter meds, like acetaminophen and
- NSAIDs (Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)
The Role of the Patient
As a patient, you play an important role in pain management and trying to get better. This includes:
- Informing the hospice staff if you are in pain.
- It is easier for the team to treat the pain if you are honest about it.
- Informing the hospice team of any side effects
- Maintaining a pain diary. Make a note about when you experience pain and how severe it is. Often, make a note of the drugs you used. This allows the hospice team to change the medication when necessary.
- Taking the medication as prescribed. Pain becomes more difficult to manage if you wait too long to take the medication. You may also require a higher dose.
The Duty of the Family
It could be difficult for you to comprehend how your loved one feels. However, the pain he or she is feeling is genuine. You can assist. Assist your loved one in keeping a pain management journal. Make certain that the medication is administered on time. Don’t “save” or postpone giving pain medication. This can result in more pain and withdrawal symptoms. Pain relief is most effective when medication is administered on time and before the pain becomes serious. Remember that effective pain management is important in hospice. It allows your loved ones to live their life to the fullest during the time they have left.
Actions to take when Pain Management Grows into an Addiction
If a person has developed an addiction to prescription pain medication for physical symptoms, you must seek care in a health facility that will accommodate everything that the person requires. During persistent physical disorder apart from drug overuse is present; curing that drug overuse condition without treating the root problem would be ineffective. Taking the time to properly assess and manage each individual’s disease, according to professionals, is a concept of successful care.
Such could lead to Problems Such As:
You have to find a health facility that treats pain and contains expertise, time, commitment, and professional personnel to handle this. Many people have drug addiction issues in addition to another disorder that necessitates different ways of controlling aches. In these cases, they must consider the dual diagnosis. Contact us today by calling 615-490-9376 about pain management to find out more.
Ben Lesser is one of the most sought-after experts in health, fitness and medicine. His articles impress with unique research work as well as field-tested skills. He is a freelance medical writer specializing in creating content to improve public awareness of health topics. We are honored to have Ben writing exclusively for Dualdiagnosis.org.