Chronic Back Pain: Coping with the Mental & Social Stresses
When you are experiencing chronic and debilitating pain, there is nothing more imperative than taking the steps to take your life back! Chronic back pain is not only physically draining, but it can also add emotional and mental stress. Many patients experience other losses that are related to their chronic pain such as job loss, home life problems and financial burdens. With this, low self-esteem and confidence tends to follow.
Thought patterns become negative and feelings of anger, hopelessness, guilt, sadness and anxiety become more and more common. The Comprehensive Pain Consultants of the Carolinas, back doctors in Asheville NC, understand both the physical and emotional aspects of chronic back pain. We also have solutions to better manage your pain for the long run. Seek pain management in Asheville, schedule your appointment today!
Here are a few tips we have for coping with the mental and social stresses of chronic back pain.
We realize this is much easier said than done, but it’s still worth thinking about. Since negative feelings can increase your body’s sensitivity to pain, it’s important to take control of the stress in your life. Is there anything you can remove or add to your daily routine to bring you more joy? It may be as simple as taking 30 minutes to yourself where you completely relax, listen to your favorite music and eliminate all other distractions. This might seem silly, but it could result in pain relief!
When we exercise our body, the brain releases natural endorphins that boost your mood—helping bring you to a positive state of mind. This brain chemical also aids to block pain signals. Physical exercise increases muscle strength and balance which all aid to prevent future injuries. Depending on the chronic back pain you are experiencing, certain exercises may not be advised. Check out these tips for protecting your back and staying active. It’s best to talk with your doctor before starting any exercise regimen—get in touch with our Asheville pain management clinic here.
Eliminate alcohol consumption
Some patients with regular back pain turn to alcohol to help them deal with both the physical and emotional side effects of pain. Alcohol is hard on our bodies, making our organs work harder and making sleep difficult! Sleep deprivation often leads to irritability, anxiety and even depressed thoughts. If you’re living with chronic pain, drinking less or eliminating it completely can dramatically improve your quality of life.
Seek out a pain psychologist
Pain psychologists are experts who help people cope with thoughts, feelings and behaviors that are accompanied by chronic pain. Working with a trained pain psychologist can help you develop new ways to think about problems, find solutions and live a full life. Not only are we the best back doctors in Asheville NC, we also have trained pain psychologists on staff to help you cope.
Join a support group
Along with seeking one-on-one psychology help, finding a chronic pain support group may also help you work through the emotional burdens of pain. This gives you the opportunity to share your story and listen to others who are going through similar physical and mental challenges. Many chronic back pain patients suffer from isolation, so joining a support group is one way to get out of your house and know you are not alone on this road to recovery.
Incorporating deep breathing and meditation techniques to your daily routine is a powerful way to relax your body and your mind. Find a quiet place, get comfortable, block out distractions and focus on your breathing. Relaxation helps to reduce tightness and tension in your body, therefore, decreasing overall pain.
Don’t Lose Hope
Pain is complicated and we know how frustrating it can be. Your mental state plays a significant role in chronic back pain. By taking these proactive steps, we hope to improve your quality of life, give you more control in personal situations and find long-term pain relief.
Experiencing back pain Asheville NC? The team at Comprehensive Pain Consultants of the Carolinas are here to help you with both the physical and mental results of chronic pain. We have convenient locations throughout the Asheville, NC area in Fletcher, Hendersonville, Marion, Waynesville, Brevard, Weaverville, and Franklin.
Disclaimer: You should always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health care provider before beginning any exercise program. The information contained in this article does not constitute medical advice, nor does reading or accessing this information create a patient-provider relationship. Comments that you post will be shared with all visitors to this page. All comments are not governed by HIPAA and you should not post any private health information.