How much is chronic pain affecting your lifestyle and happiness? Dealing with ongoing pain can take a toll on your mental and physical health, and some people endure pain for months or years.
Pain is an inevitable part of living, with aches and medical concerns increasing over time. However, just because you are going through the aging process doesn’t mean that you must continue struggling with pain.
If you are ready to find relief, you might consider a consultation with a pain management doctor. Here are a few things to consider when you are choosing the right timing for your appointment.
Acute Pain vs. Chronic Pain
Injury, sickness, or surgery can cause acute pain, usually resulting from temporary factors. Over time, your body will heal, and the pain will dissipate.
But there are times when the pain doesn’t go away. For example, when you have ongoing pain, either consistently or recurring episodes, it falls in the category of chronic pain.
Most doctors classify pain as chronic if it lasts longer than 3 months. Chronic pain can affect any part of the body, including the back, arms, legs, joints, abdomen, and more.
Some patients live with chronic pain for so long that they don’t realize there are potential options to address the pain. Pain management is an option to consider so you can return to living a full, thriving life.
Getting to the Root Cause of Pain
In the beginning, most patients look for immediate relief through temporary pain management treatments. For example, you might pull out a bottle of pain medication so you can focus on a busy afternoon of work meetings or play outside with your grandkids.
The problem with these temporary solutions is they only cover up the symptoms without addressing the underlying cause. Over time, the pain can continue to worsen and cause more disruption in your life.
When you visit a pain management doctor, the ultimate goal is to find the underlying root cause of your pain. We determine a specific diagnosis. Then, a personalized treatment plan can be designed to help you overcome these ongoing issues.
Don’t Delay Pain Management Services
Too often, patients wait to see a pain management doctor because they hope the pain goes away over time. Certain injuries might heal on their own, such as a minor sprain or strain.
But if you have chronic pain that doesn’t go away after a few days or weeks, then it’s time to talk to a doctor about your options.
A primary care physician can offer basic recommendations, but they don’t have the expertise that is available from a pain management doctor. If you aren’t getting results from a general healthcare provider, look at other options from a healthcare team specializing in pain management care.
Pain management doctors use a variety of interventional treatments and non-surgical procedures. This holistic approach integrates complementary therapies to help you reach your pain management goals.
Some patients can stop using medications and return to normal daily activities. Other patients are simply looking to reduce the pain levels and minimize the impact that chronic pain is having on their lives.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been experiencing chronic pain: there is no reason to wait for a consultation with a pain management specialist. We are always here to help.
5 Signs You Should Talk to a Pain Management Specialist
Pay attention to your daily experience and pain levels to determine when to talk to a pain management specialist. Here are a few indications that you can benefit from pain management services:
1. Certain Movements Contribute to Pain
Have you noticed that specific movements or motions aggravate your pain? For example, you might find that your hip aches every time you are walking or jogging.
These movements and pain occurrences can provide clues about the location where the pain is originating. A pain management specialist helps with the diagnosis and a treatment plan to address the root cause of your pain.
Our team gathers the necessary information and completes testing to determine the best course of action to reduce or eliminate your pain. This process can involve pain mapping, followed by treatments such as nerve-root blocking.
2. Daily Activities are Difficult
If you are struggling to get out of bed or find yourself on the couch for most of the day due to pain, then you might need pain management services.
Keep in mind that there is a difference between a minor injury affecting your mobility for a period of time, compared to ongoing pain that is impacting your life for months or years.
Ongoing pain makes it hard to complete basic household or career activities, such as washing the dishes or cleaning up after the kids. When you are unable to perform day-to-day activities, then it’s time to seek pain management support.
3. Pain is Disrupting Your Sleep
Quality sleep is essential for overall health and vitality. When you aren’t sleeping well, then it often has a domino effect on your body.
When you are getting enough sleep, and your body is in a restful state, this time is when the body works on repairing and rebuilding. Conversely, problems start to occur if you wake up frequently.
Whether you have dull pain that leaves you feeling restless at night or you can’t fall asleep because of intense pain, you need to address the pain right away.
Talk to a pain management doctor and share your experience at night so we can design a treatment plan to help you sleep better.
4. Using Pain Medication Regularly
How often do you turn to medication to manage your pain? You might be using a prescription pain reliever or over-the-counter medicines.
While these pills can provide temporary relief, it’s not healthy to pop pills on an ongoing basis. When pain-relieving medications are used long-term, they can lead to side effects in the body, such as organ damage. Additionally, the use of certain pain medications can result in addiction or dependency.
Occasional use of pain medication isn’t a problem for most people. But you shouldn’t be relying on pain medication to get through the day.
Instead, talk to our pain management specialists to find other treatment options with fewer side effects.
5. Other Related Symptoms
Pain isn’t the only physical symptom you might be experiencing. Sometimes, patients have coinciding symptoms that might indicate a pinched nerve or another structural issue.
Watch for these signs, which indicate you can benefit from pain management services:
- Pain radiates down your arm or leg
- Whole-body pain or aching
- Tingling or numbness
- Muscle weakness
- Loss of range of motion
Our team evaluates the location and movement of your pain, as well as other symptoms that indicate the underlying problem that needs to be addressed.
You Don’t Have to Live with Pain
Even though pain seems like an inevitable part of your life, you don’t have to continue living with this pain. At Kentuckiana Pain Specialists, we provide full-service pain management support. Our goal is to help you regain a healthy, happy lifestyle.
We help patients reduce their reliance on pain medications. Schedule a consultation so you can learn more about alternative treatments for pain management.
Our pain management doctors at Kentuckiana Pain Specialists serve patients throughout the Louisville, Kentucky area. Contact us today to book an appointment: contact our office or call us at (502) 995-4004.