Chronic pain can sometimes be challenging to treat, depending on the cause. While over-the-counter and prescription pills might cure some problems, for others, you’ll just have to get used to it. The truth is there is no 100% guarantee when it comes to managing pain. So, combining different approaches might not be such a bad idea. If you’re in pain due to one condition or another, here are three vital tips for chronic pain and inflammation management.
1. Consider surgical implants.
Standard oral or injectables drugs can work wonders on relatively mild pains, regardless of the illness. Examples include prostaglandins inhibitors like acetaminophen and ibuprofen. Some supplements and vitamins are effective against chronic pain and inflammation, such as natural water pill, which comes in handy for reducing water retention, excess water, or edema/swelling around the liver or kidney.
However, when pills and other standard medicines fail to offer chronic pain sufferers the needed relief, surgical implants might be the next stop. Surgical implants are rarely the first option in clinical settings. However, if you’re a candidate for anti-pain surgical implants, there are two main categories: spinal cord stimulation implants and intrathecal drug delivery.
The former involves the transmission of non-lethal electrical charge signals into the spinal cord or nerve. This blocks signals of pain from getting to the brain. This method of pain management is used to ease discomfort in the back and limbs. An electricity-delivery device is surgically implanted into a person’s body while the patient remotely controls the signal-transmitting device’s switch and intensity.
The latter, which is also referred to as the spinal drug delivery system, involves making a pouch under the skin with a thickness of one inch to three inches—just large enough to accommodate a drug pump. These types of implants deliver powerful pain killers like morphine, and other pain-relieving medication needed only minimal doses. The advantage of this approach is that drugs can circumvent resistance and bioavailability challenges.
2. Exercise more often.
Exercise allows the human body to heal some pains by producing endorphins naturally. This is possible as released endorphins communicate with the pain receptors of the brain. Various forms of exercise have been shown to offer patients relief from many medical conditions that have defied conventional medical approaches.
Examples include yoga, somatic movement therapy, etc. These exercises or movements can relieve pain as they are not aimed at mere calorie-burning but to teach the mind how to heal the body through the existing connections between the human body and the mind.
They’re not just effective for chronic pain; they also alleviate muscle tension, respiratory issues, digestive disorders, high blood pressure, etc. What’s more, these therapeutic exercises help those who are not sure how to cope with disability from injuries or surgery (e.g., post-breast cancer surgery). Evidence reveals that women who lost their breasts to cancer were able to manage without cosmetics surgery after many somatic therapy sessions.
3. Consider alternative therapies.
Deep body massage can relieve temporary body aches in addition to muscle inflammation. However, it may not provide a lasting solution if the pain is caused by an underlying disease (such as an autoimmune disease).
Other alternative therapies for chronic pain and inflammation management are hot/cold water therapy, soaking the body in saltwater, pulsed electromagnetic field, and electromagnetic waves—which help restore cellular energy needed by the body to initiate healing.
All in all, pain management doesn’t have to be a lonely experience. With the right medication and therapy, day-to-day living and disease control will be easier.