Chronic pain is defined as pain that is on-going or persistent in nature. This pain can occur anywhere on the body and differs from acute pain, which usually arises as the result of a new ailment or injury. Like acute pain, chronic pain can begin as a side-effect of injury or illness but may have no clear cause in other cases.
Since pain is a subjective experience that differs for everyone, making a medical diagnosis can be difficult. In recent years, chronic pain has gained more public discussion and support but continues to be a somewhat controversial topic because of this. When explaining your pain to a physician, descriptions of the timeframe of occurrence, location(s), causes and pain sensations (tingling, sharp, throbbing, shooting, numbing, radiating, burning, aching, etc.) can help a doctor prescribe better and more individualized solutions.
For those suffering, their pain can cause many obstacles to everyday life and happiness. The goal of treatment is to reduce pain and improve function for the individual. While chronic pain cannot necessarily be cured, there are many options for managing this condition ranging from simple self-care to more invasive procedures.
If you or someone you know experiences chronic pain, consider scheduling an appointment with a pain specialist to learn about your options.
Support groups for additional resources, information and support: https://www.theacpa.org/about-us/support-groups/