Imagine being in so much pain that you can't even get out of bed. It is a pain that has stolen your life and consumed it with fear and self-doubt. Your whole world is beginning to revolve around it that is getting worse. You feel completely out of control.
As it's taking over your thoughts, your worry increases, and sometimes you don't sleep at all, and because of this, it's more difficult to work. This can be one of the most painful conditions in the world as you wonder how you will ever get better.
When it happens to you, chronic pain does not discriminate if you are young or old, rich or poor, man or woman. Countless people suffer in silence every day because they don't realize there are effective treatments available. It is important to understand that chronic pain is not just a certain amount of pain per week. It is a pain that refuses to go away and keeps nagging at all times. And underestimating your condition could lead to more debilitating complications.
When pain starts, you might only be experiencing minor discomfort, especially if it's a new injury. However, as time goes by, your pain becomes chronic which means that you must start taking it more seriously and get professional help from a New York pain management specialist. Below are five common chronic pain symptoms to look out for that you might be ignoring.
1. Body Aches that Won't Go Away
Body aches that won't go away can be a sign of chronic pain. When you feel pain, it's your body's way of telling you something is wrong, so it's important to listen to your body and do what you can to alleviate the problem.
One of the most common ways we ignore our bodies signals is when we chalk up a long-lasting problem to "getting old." You may have heard that getting older means that things like joint aches and backaches are going to happen more often, so you might as well just get used to them. But there's a difference between feeling achy from time to time and living in constant discomfort.
The most common symptom of chronic pain is the feeling of general body aches. This can include soreness throughout the arms, legs, neck, and back, but instead of just being sore from overworking, it can feel like your body is sore all the time without an identifiable cause. It can also include a feeling that your joints are in constant motion even when you aren't using them—some people describe this as having an itch in their bones. If you've been experiencing any of these symptoms for more than three months and they're severely impacting your everyday life, then it might be time to see a pain specialist.
2. Insomnia or Inability to Sleep
If you've been dealing with pain for a while, you might have trouble sleeping or wake up feeling tired even if you've had plenty of sleep. It's easy to ignore your body's warning signs when you're in pain, but there are many things that can indicate pain is a problem. Sleeping problems are an early sign of chronic pain and something you should pay attention to.
Chronic pain can mess with your sleep schedule and your ability to reach deep REM sleep, which can interfere with memory consolidation and even lead to mood disorders. Similarly, pain can interrupt your regular daily routine, causing you to skip out on things like social activities or exercise.
The thing about chronic health conditions is that even if they often have a fairly obvious "primary" cause (like a specific injury or disease), there are usually a lot of other factors that are contributing to the overall problem.
Not only does chronic pain make it more difficult to fall and stay asleep, but sleep issues can also exacerbate the chronic pain. If the root cause of your pain isn't being addressed and treated properly, it can lead to an ongoing cycle where neither your physical nor mental health improves—you may feel worse than ever before. In this case, it's important to seek medical attention immediately.
3. Persistent and Unexplained Fatigue
Persistent and unexplained fatigue could be a sign of chronic pain, especially if it's been going on for longer than four weeks. It's understandable why it would be—living with pain can be exhausting! But when your tiredness doesn't go away even after you've had a good night's sleep, you might want to take a closer look at what's going on. If you're feeling tired all the time without good reason, talk to a health professional about it.
Tiredness may be a symptom of a number of different conditions, including depression and pain that are still being treated or under control (and not getting enough rest while you're working so hard to manage your symptoms). Therefore, it's important to discuss your fatigue with your doctor in order to rule out any potential medical causes and get a proper diagnosis.
4. Increased Irritability or Moodiness
When you're in pain, the last thing you want to do is be grumpy with the people around you. It's not their fault that you're hurting, and it's not like they'll even realize what's going on. In fact, most of the time, they'll probably just attribute your mood to something else entirely. But chronic pain can have a way of making us feel isolated and alone, which can lead to a downward spiral of bitterness and resentment.
Chronic pain can cause you to isolate yourself from friends and family due to fear of worsening the pain with physical activity or causing embarrassment. While these mood changes are perfectly normal and don't necessarily indicate a problem if they only occur occasionally, if they start to happen regularly, it's worth looking into whether your pain is being managed properly.
If you're in a lot of pain, you might be at risk of experiencing mood swings or irritability. You might notice that you get easily frustrated with the people around you for very little reason, that your patience with others is wearing thin, or that you find it difficult to concentrate on things.
5. Depression or Anxiety
A lot of people who suffer from chronic pain are able to cope with their conditions because they've learned to manage their expectations. For example, if it's been determined that certain physical tasks will always cause you a great deal of pain, then you may have learned not to expect yourself to be able to do them.
However, when the reason for this kind of stress is a negative emotional state, it becomes all too easy for your frustration and disappointment in yourself to actually cause your condition to worsen. Your body is already working hard enough to deal with the pain—your mind shouldn't have to work even harder against itself.
Pain can make you feel like your life is over and you can no longer do anything you used to enjoy. You may not even realize that you are depressed or anxious because of your pain, so these issues should be taken into account as well. The thing is, there's no single treatment for all types of pain; despite the wide array of options available today, some still work better than others.
If you are experiencing chronic pain, it's important to talk to a New York pain management specialist about how best to treat your condition and explore all of your treatment options—more than likely, they will include more than one kind of treatment.
Don't Ignore the Symptoms
Please don't ignore your pain—or the triggers that may cause it. It's easy to convince yourself that a little bit of pain isn't a big deal or that going out in the cold will make you feel better, but these tricks can cause more harm than good. You deserve to live a long and healthy life, so listen to your body and make some simple lifestyle choices every day.
Chronic pain is a serious condition; if you are experiencing one of these symptoms, be sure to check with a qualified pain specialist for more personalized advice. Hopefully, by following this advice, you can ease your chronic pain.