A little pain usually is a good thing. It’s our alarm system. It’s our body’s way of saying, “Hey, that’s hot … get away before it hurts you!” But when the pain lingers on and on, it’s no longer helpful. Chronic pain can disrupt your normal lifestyle.
If you suffer from chronic pain, you should know that there are ways to cope. Chronic pain does not need to run, or ruin, your life.
The first step is to learn all you can about your condition. Talk to your doctor and read up on it. Understanding your pain is the first step to reducing it.
Next, take an active role in your recovery. Talk with your doctor about medical treatments that might reduce your pain. But if these treatments can’t completely heal you, don’t give up hope. You can use basic lifestyle choices to control your pain and regain a normal life.
Manage Stress and Your Emotions
Our bodies and minds are connected. Stress, tension and stirred emotions can aggravate pain. Find ways to reduce the stress in your life; deal with your troubling emotions and your pain likely will decrease. Deep breathing, visualization and other relaxation techniques can help you calm your mind and reduce your pain.
Exercise leads to a healthier body, and a healthier body feels less pain. Strong, toned muscles feel less pain than unused muscles. Also, exercise will give you more of the energy you need to overcome the pain. Less tangible is the fact that when you’re more fit, you’ll feel better about yourself — more in control — and that can mean a lot. Be sure to talk to your doctor about exercise that is safe for you.