Chronic Pain is now classified as a disease. It is very sad that many of us suffer each day with Migraines, CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), Fibromyalgia, Lyme Disease (affecting joints & muscles), along with Autoimmune Diseases that cause debilitating pain affecting all aspects of our lives.
Chronic Pain is a complex subject.
Many physicians, by the nature of their practice, do not specialize in pain management. Some doctors may dismiss our claims because they can’t actually see our pain in physical examinations or within test results. To make matters worse, many patients go to the doctor to get pain scripts for powerful meds when not absolutely necessary. This is often obvious to Physicians and may understandably impact their attitude toward all of us, as a population, making it tougher on those who truly need assistance.
Also, many people suffering from Chronic Pain become depressed from the constant stress that comes along with unrelenting pain. These people may be misdiagnosed as clinically depressed and prescribed antidepressants, which may mask the symptoms, but may not necessarily address the root cause or help with long-term pain management. As a woman, I can speak from experience on this next point. Sometimes women are stereotyped as “weak” or “complainers”. Interesting enough, many women are more in tune with their bodies than men and have a much greater tolerance for Chronic Pain.
The short of it all – never give up! There are solutions.
As a Wellness Coach and Health Advocate, I team with my clients to help them identify the root cause of their pain, by assessing them on many different levels. I look at every area of their lives, their physical and emotional challenges, and also screen them for specific vitamin, mineral, and other nutritional deficiencies which can be linked to chronic pain. If necessary, I help match them with the best Pain Management Doctor for their particular issues. I research their pain management training and how supportive they are of alternative options of treatment as opposed to only prescribing medications, to ease the patient’s suffering.
Client education is critical. My clients learn how to effectively communicate with their doctors, with confidence. Patient Empowerment is my number one focus with clients. Asking the right questions, getting the right answers, taking notes and reflecting back on the experience to improve upon future visits, are all critical components. Questions like, “How long should it take to experience relief?” and “What is the total cost of the treatment?” before getting started down a particular path. Of course, this is often a daunting challenge, when out-of-your-mind in pain. Teaming with a Wellness Coach can help keep your train on the tracks, when you’re not at your best.
Educating ourselves, with alternative methods such as Acupuncture, Medical Massage, exercise and Reiki, is an important step. Options such as these, perhaps in combination with traditional Western medicine, can be the difference between “surviving” and “thriving”. Emotional pain should be considered and is often linked to the physical pain. Our bodies carry around memories from the past which can affect us in the present. Working with a Therapist or a Hypnotherapist to address the subconscious element has been known to bring about positive results.
Chronic Pain should be examined and treated on a body, mind, and spirit level for the best possible results. Whether teaming with a qualified, experienced coach or going it alone, please educate yourself, keep an open mind to various options, organize your thoughts and plan your approach in advance of your doctor visits, and take action from a position of confidence…and never, ever give up.