Manage Your Pain, and Manage Your Life
As you may have already learned the hard way, chronic pain can hurt more than just your body. Conditions that limit your mobility and prevent you from pursuing your favorite activities can make you feel a gut-wrenching loss of control over your own life. The sheer endless onslaught of pain can also promote serious mood disorders such as depression and anxiety. If you’re not living the life you want, you can change that life by changing your approach to your chronic pain problem. That’s where physical therapy can come to your rescue.
The Physical, Mental and Emotional Impact of Chronic Pain
Chronic pain is a lingering source of distress by definition. Pain that goes on for months or years at a time can wreck your life, especially if you know that irreversible damage lies at the root of the pain. As a result, you may experience any or all of the following torments:
- Lifestyle limitations– Your life was a lot more fun, varied and involving before chronic pain came along. Now that you can no longer play your favorite sport, pursue a beloved hobby, play with your kids or work at your job, you feel understandably bored and frustrated.
- Learned helplessness– Chronic pain can lead to a psychological response known as learned helplessness, especially when your chosen pain-fighting techniques aren’t getting results. Eventually you stop even trying to combat the waves of pain and the limitations that they impose on you.
- Depression and anxiety– There is a clear, well-established link between chronic pain and equally debilitating mood disorders. One study found that 77 percent of chronic pain sufferers also suffer from depression. Major, long-term depression can have its own negative effects on your health, from sleeplessness and fatigue to difficulty concentrating. The unpredictable or frightening aspects of chronic pain, from its impact on your medical bills to concerns over a serious illness, can also cause intense anxiety or aggravate a pre existing anxiety disorder.
Physical Therapy Puts You Back in the Driver’s Seat
Simply taking action and trying a new weapon on your chronic pain can make you feel better by giving you back your feeling of control. You’ll feel even better once your physical therapy program starts to tame your pain and restore your mobility. A caring physical therapist provides you with all kinds of tools, beginning with a better understanding of your pain’s causes and effects. You’ll receive valuable education on how you can use physical therapy for a lifetime of drug-free pain management.
Then there’s the physical therapy itself. Strength training, flexibility exercises, massage, laser therapy, TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation), dry needling, heat or ice treatments, and acupuncture can all work together to reduce your pain and inflammation. A long-term physical therapy pain management plan can even include techniques to “rewire” your brain. We can show you how to alter your relationship with your pain, enabling you to pursue your exercises and other treatments with more energy and enthusiasm. As your pain recedes, your mood stabilizes and your sleep quality improves. Best of all, you will feel like you’re calling the shots for your life once again.
Take Command, Starting Today — by Contacting Our Physical Therapist
Don’t let chronic pain tell you what to do or how to feel. Reclaim command over your life, starting today. Contact one of Elliott Physical Therapy’s five Massachusetts locations to learn more about our pain-busting methods. You’ll be taking the first step toward a happier existence!