Physical Therapy And Pain

Pain is normal and important and comes from our nervous system. There are 45 miles of nerves in our body and they are all connected like highways. We used to think that pain was very simple and we are often told that PAIN = HARM or PAIN = DAMAGE. We now know that this is not the case. We now know that…

What is pain? PAIN = An output by the brain based on the brain’s evaluation of an experience and it’s perceived threat. It is basically an alarm system for our body, however it doesn’t always mean something is wrong. Pain includes information from our BODY, ENVIRONMENT AND OUR BRAIN. So, everything that is going on in these 3 places is impacting the output of pain and what we feel. This is especially true for chronic pain.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is very common and a normal part of aging. Acute pain from arthritis can be a cause of chronic pain and can impact the ability to perform daily tasks and recreation. Chronic pain is pain that has been present for 3 or more months and effects 25.3 million adults. We now know that acute pain can change the central nervous system making it more sensitive and the result can be the presence of chronic pain. This explains why pain can persist despite medication or joint replacements. Chronic pain can be very tiring and drain one’s ability to work, be active and enjoy life. It can also lead to ongoing problems with sleep, depression and anxiety.

We often are told that rest is important and begin to think that movement and exercise may cause more pain or damage. In fact, exercise is considered the most effective non-drug treatment for pain, especially pain related to arthritis. It should include range of motion and strength as well as some aerobic or cardiovascular exercises. A physical therapist is trained to provide a guided approach to movement and exercise that can be a very effective and a long term solution to improving chronic pain.

Managing chronic pain from all angles is important and a good program may involve a medical doctor, physical therapist and behavioral health provider. This combination of therapies provides treatment from all aspects and may be the most successful method of treating severe chronic pain. At Sacred Circle Healthcare we specialize in chronic pain. We provide a multidisciplinary approach to pain, which includes providers of physical therapy, behavioral health and medical doctors. We are passionate about helping people return to life in the safest way. All providers are in a single location making it simple to schedule appointments and allows for comprehensive and individualized care that is focused on you.
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