Chronic Pain

10 Self Help Tips for Chronic Pain Management

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1.  Learn deep breathing or meditation for relaxation.


Though there are many different ways to meditate, repetition serves as the core for many different forms of meditation.  Concentrating on breathing, ignoring thoughts, and repeating a word or phrase may cause the body to relax.


2.  Reduce stress levels


Negative feelings including depression, anxiety, stress, and anger may increase the body's sensitivity to pain.  Listening to calm and soothing music may elevate your mood, making the chronic pain more tolerable.  Guided imagery may also prove to be helpful, as it is a form of mental escape that may promote relaxation and help bring peace to your life.


3.  Boost pain relief with natural endorphins made available through exercise.


Endorphins are chemicals in the brain that improve your mood while also blocking pain signals.  Exercise also strengthens muscles, decreasing the chances of re-injury.  Exercise may also lower your weight, reduce heart disease risk, and control blood sugar levels.


4.  Decrease alcohol consumption.


Though pain can make sleeping difficult, alcohol may make sleep problems worse.  If you are experiencing chronic pain, drinking less or no alcohol is recommended.


5.  Join a support group.


Being around people who also endure chronic pain may make you feel less alone.  You may also benefit from their wisdom in coping with pain.  Meeting a mental health professional  may also be recommended.


6.  Don't smoke.


Smoking may make painful circulation problems worse and increases the risk of heart disease and cancer.


7.  Track your pain and activities every day.


Maintaining a log or a journal of your daily "pain score" will help track your pain.  Measuring your pain at the end of the day using a 1 to 10 scale  as well as keeping track of your activities may help your doctor understand your chronic pain.


8.  Learn biofeedback to decrease headaches.


With biofeedback,  sensors are worn so that you can "hear" or "see" bodily functions like pulse, digestion, body temperature, and muscle tension.  The squiggly lines and beeps on the attached monitors reflect what is happening inside you body.  When you learn to control those squiggles and beeps, you may be able to train your mind to lessen pain.


9.  Get a massage for chronic pain relief.


A massage can reduce stress and relieve tension.  Massages are utilized by people living with different kinds of chronic pain, including back pain and neck pain.


10.  Eat a healthy diet.


A well balanced diet aids your digestive process, reduces heart disease risk, keeps weight under control, and improves blood sugar levels.