CHRONIC PAIN RELIEF
WHAT IS CHRONIC PAIN?
15% of Canadians suffer from chronic pain syndrome. Chronic pain is pain that persists for weeks, months or years. Persistent pain often starts with a minor injury or illness, but does not improve over time. The ongoing pain makes it increasingly difficult to move, work and enjoy a normal life. Simple things like touching the skin, stretching, or moving muscles becomes excruciatingly painful.
Take for example, touching the skin lightly. This usually does not hurt when the nervous system is working normally. The nerves send a message of light touch to the brain that is processed as normal light touch. But this system is not hard-wired. With persistent pain, the system somehow gets rewired and the messages from the skin now send pain signals instead of touch signals. The brain can also rewire. Instead of processing the information from the skin as normal the brain now processes the information as a pain. This rewiring of the nervous system is called “central sensitization” which is now considered its own disease.
Thankfully, there is hope. Chronic back pain, neck pain, and joint pain is not imagined or exaggerated, but likely caused by a rewiring of the nervous system.
HOW CAN A PHYSIOTHERAPIST HELP WITH CHRONIC PAIN?
Did you know that physiotherapists can help with chronic pain syndrome?
Seeking the help of a physiotherapist may not be your first thought if you have an ongoing problem such as chronic back pain, but you may be surprised to learn what physiotherapists can do to help.
Effective management requires interventions that help rewire the nervous system instead of treating the original injury, leading to chronic pain relief. That’s where a physiotherapist can help. Physiotherapists are highly skilled at assessing how the pain affects your ability to move and will help find ways to get you moving again. HealthX physiotherapists can:
- Help you unlearn some of the abnormal postures and movements your body may have adopted to guard the pain.
- Develop a safe activity program that will gradually help your nervous system rewire itself.
- Provide relaxation, imagery and/or breathing techniques that can help reduce muscle tension and calm the nervous system.
- Assess if specific treatments will help (e.g., IMS, manual therapy, modalities, acupuncture).
With a strong medical background, our physiotherapists work closely with physicians and other health-care providers involved in your care. Chronic pain management requires a team of health providers working together. Call or message us now to book your consultation!