For many different conditions, seeing an orthopedic doctor who is also a pain specialist can help you to have very specific problems addressed. Oftentimes, chronic and acute pain are closely related to the musculoskeletal system. Seeing a doctor with experience in both orthopedics and pain management ensures that your pain will be treated with your overall health and needs in mind, rather than just an attempt to cover up or mask your pain symptoms.
If you are a victim of chronic pain, it can be extremely frustrating. You wake up and your pain is there. You fight to get through your day and your pain is still with you. When you turn in at night in hopes of getting a break from your pain, it remains your constant companion. Chronic pain can have such a negative impact on your life that you are limited in what you can do. You’ll find yourself avoiding certain activities and managing your whole life around your pain. You can’t continue this way indefinitely or it will rob you of good health as your chronic pain steals your comfort, mobility, and rest. A pain specialist can help you to properly diagnose the source of your pain in order to help you have a better quality of life.
What Causes Chronic Pain?
Everyone has experienced an injury or illness that has resulted in pain at some point in their lives. However, it becomes chronic pain when it never goes away, a condition that affects millions of Americans of all ages across the country. Pain is not a discriminator and can attack the young and the old. It can be caused by a host of issues. Injury, or trauma to the body, is one of the most common sources of chronic pain. When an injury affects the bones, muscles, tendons, and nerves, it often throws the body off balance or causes significant damage. The end result is pain.
TMJ disorders, problems that revolve around the jaw joint, are the result of injury, strain, or inflammation. When not addressed, they can result in chronic pain that extends beyond the jaw to the head, neck, and shoulders.
Chronic migraine pain is a type of chronic pain that causes excruciating headaches that occur at least fifteen days out of the month. Each bout with a headache could last up to three days.
Other typical conditions that cause chronic pain include:
- Arthritis in various forms, caused by an inflammation of the joints
- Osteoporosis, which results in brittle bones that ache
- Fibromyalgia, a condition that causes pervasive inflammation throughout the body
- Neuropathy, nerve damage that is caused by various conditions, including diabetes
- Multiple sclerosis, a condition that is the result of scar tissue around the nerves
Pain may be the result of genetic conditions that are present at birth. Regardless of the source of your chronic pain, you need to find an effective treatment plan that will help you to find relief in order to live a richer, fuller life. The first step to finding answers is to get a proper diagnosis from a pain specialist.
Finding Solutions with Your Partner in Pain Management
A pain management physician is dedicated to helping patients understand what is causing their pain and how they can manage it through a combination of methods. The key to managing pain is pinpointing its cause. A pain specialist will get a comprehensive overview of a patient’s condition. Family history, medical records, x-rays, MRIs, CT scans, ultrasound imaging, and a physical evaluation will provide the doctor with a complete overview. At that point, it will be possible to determine why chronic pain is such a source of aggravation. You may not know why you are experiencing pain on a day to day basis or you may still be searching for answers. Be sure to see a pain doctor, whether it’s the beginning of your journey with chronic pain or you need a second opinion.
Treatment Options for Chronic Pain
There is no magic fix for chronic pain. Every individual is different and will respond in a unique way to treatment alternatives. A pain specialist is going to sit down with you and talk about your pain, what is causing it, and any solutions that you are currently trying in order to manage your condition. Your lifestyle will be addressed. If you are excessively overweight, a weight loss plan will be recommended. Not only will this help you to be healthier, it will mean less of a burden on your body.
Great care must be taken with any type of medication, especially pain relief medicine, because you could become addicted. This would open the door to more problems. If possible, your pain doctor will want to find a treatment plan that addresses the source of your pain, not one that simply masks your symptoms. Other typical alternatives to treat chronic pain include:
- Physical therapy
- Massage therapy
- Use of saunas and hot tubs on a regular basis
- Chiropractic adjustments
- Acupuncture and acupressure
- Ultrasound treatments
Adjustments in your diet can have a positive impact on your diet. Getting a good night’s rest on a regular basis can help your body to recharge. Establishing positive sleep habits could make a world of difference in your pain. Becoming more active through low impact alternatives will assist you as well as you get your body moving. You may find that support braces are effective components of your treatment plan. See a pain specialist to explore all of your options.
If you are experiencing any type of pain, contact our office today to schedule an appointment with a top pain specialist. You can ask any questions that you might have about our approach to diagnostics or the treatment plans that are available. At your first appointment, we will work hard to fully understand your health and symptoms, and then create with you a treatment plan that will manage your pain while still ensuring that your overall health and wellbeing is carefully considered.