If you are living with constant pain from arthritis, cancer or back or neck injury you know how dispuptive pain can be. Even when you don’t know source of your pain finding a way to get your pain under your control is always at the top of your to-do list.
The first step in pain management is always consulting a doctor to determine the cause of your pain. There are a selection of pain management clinics in Tuscon that can provide options for medical and alternative treatments.
Where to Start?
Always begin by seeing your physician. From there they can point you to one of the pain managament clinics in Tuscon.
Understanding and Describing Your Pain
Before pain treatment can begin, it is important to know just how much pain you are in.
Helpful Hint: pain is subjective which means that people experience pain differently.
Some descriptors that might help you to accurately convey your pain type to a medical professional are aching, burning, cramping, severe, dull, shooting, persistent or sharp.
What Are the Options for Medical Pain Management?
- NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), including ibuprofen, naproxen, and aspirin
- Sometimes antidepressants are used to help a patient to sleep which sometimes alleviates pain
- Anti-seizure medications for pain related to nerve damage or injury
- Steroids, like dexamethasone and prednisone, to alleviate inflammation and pain
- Opiods (Narcotics)
- Anaesthetics (not a long term option)
What Are the Alternative Treatment Options?
There are countless options dependent on your age, diagnosis and general health as well as many other factors that really need to be considered. Some pain management methods that are non-invasive are:
- therapy- it is amazing what relief talking to a professional can provide
- mindfulness- one pointed attention on a single activity
- meditation- an ancient technique to “quiet the mind” which has been proven to lessen the impact of pain
- relaxation- a guided process to release tension and stress from the body which can alleviate symptoms
- visual imagery- focused visualization takes the mind off the pain
- heat and cold therapy- following a specific contrast bathing protocol dulls the feeling of pain
- massage therapy- RMTs are trained to help manage pain
- biofeedback- learning to control tension in the muscles, heart rate
Residential Pain Management Clinics
There are specialized treatment centers in Tuscon that have you live on site temporarily while a team of physicians, nurses, social workers, nurse practitioners, physical therapists and other specialists who are trained in the evaluation and treatment of chronic pain. Admission criteria for clinics of this type include
- Chronic pain or other physical complaint for at least six months
• Medically stable and cleared for admission by referring doctor
• Agreeable to admission for the purpose of rehabilitation
• Pre-authorized for admission by health insurance
These centers usually provide a comprehensive evaluation, including interdisciplinary consults and full review of your medical history. You are then provided with an individualized rehabilitation or management plan.
Remember, taking control of your pain means getting your life back.