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Peripheral Neuropathy, Peripheral, Pain Relief, CIPN, Pain Therapy, Carolina Pain Scrambler, Greenville South Carolina

5 Things To Know About Neuropathy

Neuropathy is a condition that occurs as a result of nerve damage. Peripheral neuropathy, or damage to the peripheral nerves, is one type of neuropathy and an often unexpected complication of cancer treatment. Here are five things you should know:

1. What does “peripheral neuropathy” really mean?
Peripheral nervous system is the nervous system outside the brain and spinal cord. Your hands and feet (and the rest of your body) have nerves that tell you where your extremities are in relation to your body, help regulate temperature, and signal pain. When you touch something hot, your peripheral nerves signal your central nervous system and your hand quickly pulls away.

Your peripheral nerves act like messengers between your central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and the rest of your body. Peripheral neuropathy refers to the damage done to the peripheral nervous system, which disrupts the messengers’ ability to carry information from the brain and spinal cord to the rest of the body. There are three different types of peripheral nerves that may be damaged by neuropathy: Sensory nerves, Motor nerves, and Autonomic nerves.

2. Who is affected?
Neuropathy is classified by types, which are named based on the specific nerves that are affected. Neuropathy, in general, affects about one to two percent of Americans. The most common type of neuropathy among cancer survivors is peripheral neuropathy.

It is estimated that 10–20 percent of cancer patients experience some form of peripheral neuropathy. Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy (CIPN) is a possible side-effect of chemotherapy and affects about 30–40 percent of cancer patients treated with chemotherapy. Ask your health care team about the short and long-term effects of chemotherapy you have received. Specifically, cancer types associated with higher risk include: lung, breast, ovarian, myeloma, lymphoma and Hodgkin’s disease and testicular. Certain factors about the diagnosis and treatments may also heighten risk, such as tumor location, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, and other cancer related disorders.

Other life factors and certain medication may also increase the risk of neuropathy, such as excessive use of alcohol and old age. Learn more about these factors here.

3. What are the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy?
Peripheral neuropathy can cause a tingling sensation or numbness in different parts of the body, but most commonly in the hands and feet. An individual’s personal experience of neuropathy depends on the types of peripheral nerves affected, the symptoms experienced from damage to those nerves, and the severity of those symptoms. Each person’s experience may vary.

4. So what if I’m diagnosed with neuropathy, what’s next?
Treatment and recovery times vary from case to case, but peripheral nerves can heal and recovery is possible. Depending on the cause of peripheral neuropathy and the type of nerve damage involved, a variety of different treatment options may be recommended by your health care team. These typically include:

  • Medication. Doctor prescribed medication doesn’t cure neuropathy but can help subside the pain and other side-effects.
  • Nutrition. Specific nutrients have proven to help manage neuropathy. Vitamin deficiencies can cause damage to nerve tissue, so it is important to maintain a healthy diet. A registered dietician can help you build a meal plan.
  • Physical or occupational therapy. Keeping muscles active and strong is beneficial to improving coordination and balance and reducing muscle cramps and pain. It can also help prevent injuries related to falls and loss of fine motor skills.
  • Integrative medicine. This treatment includes treatments such as massage and acupuncture to manage symptoms.

5. How can I be my own advocate?
Speak up about your symptoms to your health care team to get proper care. Educating yourself ensures you are best informed to make decisions about your treatment and will help you better communicate with your doctor, your family, and your friends about your needs.

You can take action to foster your own recovery and safety by:

  • Practicing appropriate pain relief. It is important to stay in control of your pain to maintain your quality of life. Ask your doctor for their recommendations on how to manage your pain.
  • Implementing as much movement and activity as appropriate into your routine.
  • Making sure your home is a safe environment to prevent possible tripping/falling. Examples include assuring proper lighting in hallways, using rugs for traction, and installing handrails. Find more safety tips for home here.

Surround yourself with ample support, information, and encouragement. Coping with peripheral neuropathy can be a long, difficult process, and it is important to know you are not alone. Share your feelings with friends, family, or a support group.

Article Provided By: LIVESTRONG

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If you would like to discuss what Carolina Pain Scrambler do to help relieve your chronic pain symptoms or receive more information on our treatment process, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-520-5011 or you can email us at info@carolinapainscrambler.com
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Top Pain Management Techniques

Bodily pain that lasts more than 12 weeks is defined as chronic pain. This differs from recurring pain, wherein an individual suffers shorter bouts of pain on a consistent basis. Both chronic pain and recurring pain can be life-altering and have an adverse effect on mood, happiness, and general quality of life. While diagnosing and treating the underlying condition is a good step toward reducing pain, other pain management techniques may offer relief. From exercise to biofeedback, people should know there are options for managing their pain.

1. Cold and heat

Heat therapy and cold therapy are two of the best simple and inexpensive pain management options. Heat therapy involves applying heat to the affected area; this improves circulation and blood flow. Depending on the condition, dry heat, such as heating pads, or moist heat, such as a steamed towel, may prove more beneficial. Conversely, cold therapy reduces inflammation and swelling by reducing blood flow to the target area.

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2. Yoga

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental, and spiritual practice that combines mindfulness with breathing exercises and gentle motions. Gently raising the heart rate can release endorphins that help moderate pain, as does the increase in oxygen, which also enhances mood. Physically, stretching helps reduce pain held in the muscles and joints.

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3. Exercise

Gentle exercise such as taking a brisk walk, going for a swim, or riding a bicycle can ease pain. Exercising releases endorphins that elevate mood and block pain on a molecular level. These practices also strengthen the muscles, which reduces pain and prevents re-injury in the long run.

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4. Meditation

Meditation is a mindfulness activity that requires the individual to calm and center him or herself through deep breathing and focus. The practice can elevate mood, increase energy, and help ground oneself. Studies also show that meditation and deep breathing have a positive effect on pain. Meditation releases unconscious tension and tightness that are common sources of pain.

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5. Physical therapy

Regular sessions with a licensed physical therapist can greatly reduce pain. Physical therapists will aim to treat the pain as well as the underlying source. Physical therapy sessions consist of light aerobic exercise, stretching, and strength training. Therapists may also utilize tools such as heating pads, ice packs, and massage.

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6. Massage

While many people think of a massage as part of a trip to the spa, therapeutic massage can be a useful tool for pain management in addition to relaxation. Massage releases mental stress and eases muscle tension. Although massage typically targets neck and back pain, evidence suggests it is beneficial to all types of pain, and therapists are often well-versed in treating the whole body.

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7. Avoid alcohol and smoking

Pain often makes falling asleep and staying asleep difficult. A lack of sleep can contribute to pain, creating a vicious cycle. While alcohol is a depressant and may help you fall asleep faster, it does nothing to improve the quality of your sleep, and you’ll often feel exhausted the next day; this is because alcohol blocks the deep, restorative REM sleep we need. Smoking worsens circulation, which can contribute to chronic pain.

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8. Occupational therapy

Different from physical therapy, occupational therapy involves learning and applying daily behaviors that will not aggravate the chronic pain. For example, if a person suffers from neck pain that makes it difficult to sit in front of a computer all day, an occupational therapist can suggest modifications and exercises to improve the situation. Occupational therapy is often used in conjunction with physical therapy to get the best results.

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9. Acupuncture

Acupuncture is the ancient practice of stimulating pressure points on the body to achieve specific results. While scientific inquiry into the health benefits of acupuncture is ongoing, much of the evidence suggests acupuncture is an efficient way to treat pain. Acupuncture works by activating the body’s self-healing mechanisms and can be useful in treating lower back pain, neck pain, knee pain, and osteoarthritis. It may also help with chronic migraines.

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10. Biofeedback

Biofeedback is a therapy that helps control the body’s involuntary responses to pain. Electrodes take various readings such as heart and breathing rate, blood pressure, and skin temperature. The biofeedback therapist then takes the patient through relaxation exercises that help regulate these functions and ultimately positively affect pain.

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Article Provided By: FactyHealth

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Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Pressure on the median nerve – the central nerve that connects to the hand – causes carpal tunnel syndrome. In carpal tunnel patients, it causes pain and lack of function in the hand when squeezed. People whose work requires repetitive hand movements often experience this disorder. For example, people who work on computers and hair stylists commonly experience carpal tunnel syndrome. Pregnant women are also highly susceptible. A wrist splint or exercises can ease symptoms in the early days, however, in advanced cases surgery is necessary.

1. Pins and Needles

Everyone recognizes the tingling sensation known as pins and needles. This easily happens to someone who stays in an awkward position without moving hands and legs over a period. In these cases, the feeling is no more than a slight irritant, but with carpal tunnel syndrome, the sensation is far more intense and unpleasant. Usually, it only affects the thumb and fingers, but it can also spread to other areas.

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2. Pain

Even in the early stages, carpal tunnel syndrome can be extremely painful. The pain is usually in the hands and fingers, however, in severe cases it may travel through the arm to the shoulder. Pain patterns vary from patient to patient. Doctors are continuously researching to understand more about carpal tunnel syndrome.

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3. Numbness in the fingertips

Carpal tunnel syndrome may cause loss of feeling in the fingers. The fingers may feel very little to no sensation at all. As a result, patients may be unable to complete normal day to day tasks. Surgical treatment is usually necessary to restore sensation and function. However, exercise and home treatment may be enough in some cases.

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4. Sensation of swelling

Quite regularly people with carpal tunnel syndrome feel as though their hands or fingers have become swollen. When the doctor checks them, they find no evidence of swelling, but patients continue to feel that sensation. Minor swelling may occur above the wrist at times in carpal tunnel syndrome. However, most patients report the feeling in the fingers, localized to where the numbness occurs.

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5. Hands feel weak

One of the most common carpal tunnel syndrome feelings is a sense of hands that have lost their power. In particular, people claim that they find it harder to grip small objects and this causes many breakages in the kitchen. Medical tests do not reveal any marked loss of hand power in these cases, so doctors remain uncertain why so many patients feel this way. However, some slight deterioration in grip control may happen after surgical treatment.

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6. Responds to changes in wrist movements

People with carpal tunnel syndrome often find that they can get relief by moving their hand into a different position. Symptoms are usually worse at night – presumably because of fewer hand movements. In the most severe cases, the symptoms might be so intense that they disturb sleep and cause night waking.

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7. A condition that worsens over time

Carpel tunnel syndrome worsens with time, especially if symptoms go ignored and untreated. Surgery is usually necessary for the later stages of the condition. Early detection is best, as treatment is quite simple in the early stages. Wrist splints and exercise are usually enough to relieve symptoms in the early stages.

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8. Skin color changes

A certain number of people might notice changes in the color of the skin of their hand as a consequence of this condition. Sometimes the skin could become dry. Tingling and numbness feelings in their hand is also a good indication that they might have carpal tunnel syndrome. This is especially likely to be the case if they also feel that their fingertips have become frigid.

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9. Stiffness of the fingers

Some carpal tunnel syndrome patients complain that they feel as though their fingers are very stiff. However, when the doctor examines them, they fail to find any evidence to support this feeling. If the patient’s fingers actually have become stiff, it’s likely they are experiencing rheumatic or arthritic condition.

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10. Like the twang of a rubber band

One of the strangest feelings associated with carpal tunnel syndrome is in response to a certain hand movement. People say they sense something comparable to the twang of a released rubber band in their hand and fingers. Nobody is sure what exactly causes them to have this feeling. In particular, patients report this happening after they have had surgery performed.

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Article Provided By: FactyHealth

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Peripheral Neuropathy and Diabetes

Peripheral neuropathy is nerve damage caused by chronically high blood sugar and diabetes. It leads to numbness, loss of sensation, and sometimes pain in your feet, legs, or hands. It is the most common complication of diabetes.

About 60% to 70% of all people with diabetes will eventually develop peripheral neuropathy, although not all suffer pain. Yet this nerve damage is not inevitable. Studies have shown that people with diabetes can reduce their risk of developing nerve damage by keeping their blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible.

What causes peripheral neuropathy? Chronically high blood sugar levels damage nerves not only in your extremities but also in other parts of your body. These damaged nerves cannot effectively carry messages between the brain and other parts of the body.

This means you may not feel heat, cold, or pain in your feet, legs, or hands. If you get a cut or sore on your foot, you may not know it, which is why it’s so important to inspect your feet daily. If a shoe doesn’t fit properly, you could even develop a foot ulcer and not know it.

The consequences can be life-threatening. An infection that won’t heal because of poor blood flow causes risk for developing ulcers and can lead to amputation, even death.

This nerve damage shows itself differently in each person. Some people feel tingling, then later feel pain. Other people lose the feeling in fingers and toes; they have numbness. These changes happen slowly over a period of years, so you might not even notice it.

Because the changes are subtle and happen as people get older, people tend to ignore the signs of nerve damage, thinking it’s just part of getting older.

But there are treatments that can help slow the progression of this condition and limit the damage. Talk to your doctors about what your options are, and don’t ignore the signs because with time, it can get worse.

Symptoms of Nerve Damage From Diabetes

Numbness is the most common, troubling symptom of nerve damage due to diabetes. The loss of sensation is a special concern. People who lose sensation are the ones most likely to get ulcers on their feet and to end up needing amputations.

People describe the early symptoms of peripheral neuropathy in many ways:

  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Pins and needles
  • Prickling
  • Burning
  • Cold
  • Pinching
  • Buzzing
  • Sharp
  • Deep stabs

Others describe sharp pain, cramps, tingling, prickling, a burning sensation. Still others have exaggerated sensitivity to touch.

The symptoms are often worse at night. Be on the look out for these changes in how you feel:

  • Touch sensitivity. You may experience heightened sensitivity to touch, or a tingling or numbness in your toes, feet, legs, or hands.
  • Muscle weakness. Chronically elevated blood sugars can also damage nerves that tell muscles how to move. This can lead to muscle weakness. You may have difficulty walking or getting up from a chair. You may have difficulty grabbing things or carrying things with your hands.
  • Balance problems. You may feel more unsteady than usual and uncoordinated when you walk. This occurs when the body adapts to changes brought on by muscle damage.

Because people with type 2 diabetes may have multiple health problems, doctors don’t always diagnose peripheral neuropathy when symptoms first appear. You need to be aware that your pain may be confused with other problems.

Make sure your pain is taken seriously.

Article Provided By: WebMD

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What to Say to Someone in Chronic Pain

Helpful Things to Say to Someone in Chronic Pain

Supporting someone in chronic pain can be difficult.  There is nothing that can be done to ease someone’s pain and sometimes, it leaves friends and family at a loss for words. There are no magic words or actions, but there are suggestions for things to say that could possibly help your loved one feel better.

Here is a list I have compiled from personal experience and research of helpful things to say to someone in chronic pain:

1-     “You look well today/good, but how are you feeling?”  Many times people with chronic pain feel like people see how they look on the outside, not how they feel on the inside.  This statement is helpful because you are stating something positive about the person, but asking how they are feeling despite looking good.  Additionally, asking “how are you holding up?” is a similar and helpful comment that lets the person in pain know that you acknowledge they are in pain and you wish to know how they are handling it.

2-     “I am going to be going to the store. Can I get you something?” After my second surgery my best friend would often call on weekends and tell me she was at the store and did I need anything.  The way she asked didn’t hit my pride, because I felt like she was already there and I wouldn’t bother her if I said, “sure, can you get me bread?”

3-     “I can’t imagine how hard this is for you, but you seem to be handling it well and I think you are so strong.” I often feel weakened by pain, but statements like these make me feel stronger and supported.

4-     “You are in my thoughts and prayers” As opposed to telling someone to ‘pray’ or ‘have faith,’ this statement expresses a good intention and lets us know you care.

5-     Mirror back what is being said.  If the person says “my back is really hurting me” Tell them, “Your back hurts, that must be difficult for you.”  By mirroring their statement, the person feels their pain was heard, even though there is nothing you can really say or do to help, they know you listened/heard their pain.

6-     “This must be so difficult for you, I can’t imagine.”  There are no magic words, and unless you are living with chronic pain, it’s difficult to understand what we are going through.  Comments like this show support without pretending you know how we feel.

7-     “I wish I had something to say that would help/take away the pain, but I don’t.  But I am here to listen.”  Sometimes, the best thing to say is nothing at all.  Sometimes it is best to just listen, without judgment, and just be there for someone.  Admitting you are at a loss and offering an ear is one of the most helpful things a loved one can do.

8-     “Please don’t feel bad if you have to cancel, I understand and I hope I can see you when you feel well.” This statement expresses concern without making the person feel bad about their limitations.

9-     “I hope that you feel as well as possible.”  Since we are talking about chronic pain, ‘feel better’ can be frustrating because many people don’t have ‘better’ days.  This statement is more genuine, in a way.

10- “I heard about _______(fill in miracle cure of the say).  I know every case is different, but would you like to hear about it?”  We have a lot of advice thrown at us by well-meaning people, but much of it is unwanted because it can make us feel as though others think we are not trying to help ourselves.  We also do a lot of research and see a lot of doctors, so we have probably heard it already.  By asking if the person would be interested in receiving advice shows respect for our situation and gives us the option to say ‘not right now’ or ‘sure.”

Actions speak louder than words so, remember, it can be very helpful to DO something nice for that person, like bring a meal, offer to do a load of laundry or make the bed.  Help.  But don’t make a big deal out of it.  Many times people who need help have a sense of pride and don’t like to feel they are being a burden, so by doing something and making it seem as if it’s “no big deal,” you are helping us without making us feel guilty.

Something I encounter a lot is that friends omit telling me things that have happened with their own health.  They say, “it was no big deal, it’s nothing compared to what you are going through.”  If you are supporting someone with chronic pain and you care about them, chances are they care about you and your health problems, so share what’s going on with your health as well.  It will help the person in pain feel the friendship is not one-sided.  Just because we are in pain doesn’t mean we forgot how to listen and care and, if your health issues involve pain, we can certainly sympathize better than anyone.

And, please don’t turn your back on those of us living with chronic pain just because you feel like you can’t help us.  This lifestyle carries with it so much isolation, depression and loneliness.  We count on our support system to help us.  We know we are not always the easiest of people to deal with, but please remember, we did not ask for this and we would love to have our “old lives” back.

Remember, sometimes the best thing you can say is the simplest: “I love you.”

Article Provided By: PsychCentral

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How to Sleep Well Despite Chronic Pain

Chronic pain and insomnia are an unhealthy combination. According to the National Sleep Foundation, chronic pain disturbs the slumber of one in five Americans at least a few nights a week. Whether it’s from a bad back, arthritis, or headaches, chronic pain puts you in double jeopardy: the pain robs you of restful sleep and makes you more fatigued, and thus more sensitive to pain.

But you can start to break this vicious cycle.

“For chronic pain conditions, what you need is good sleeping habits from the beginning — things that will last,” says Dr. Padma Gulur, a pain medicine specialist at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. That means relying on the brain’s natural sleep drive as much as possible.

Try “relaxing distraction”

Dr. Gulur recommends “relaxing distraction” to her patients. Some relaxation techniques use basic rhythmic breathing meditation; others focus on guided imagery, in which you imagine being in a calm, peaceful location. Find something that appeals to you and helps you fall asleep. You might look for these exercises on CD, or consider group or individual trainings or sleep education sessions.

Getting back to sleep

For some people, chronic pain not only makes it harder to fall asleep, but can also interrupt sleep. Simply shifting position in bed can trigger pain from a back condition or arthritic knee.

One approach is to take your pain medication right before bed. Check with your doctor to be sure that fits into your treatment plan. If pain does wake you in the middle of the night, first try meditation, visualization, or whatever relaxing distraction you favor. But if it doesn’t work, getting up to read a book in a quiet room with low light can help you to get back to sleep. Avoid loud sounds and bright light (that means TVs, smartphones, tablets, and computers).

Staying on a regular sleep schedule is also important. Go to bed at the same time every night and, no matter how the night goes, rise the next day at the same time and remain awake until your planned sleep time. This helps to set your internal sleep clock and enhances the natural sleep drive.

Article Provided By: Harvard Health Publishing

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Tips for Appointments

A Pain Doctor’s Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Appointment

Are you feeling frustrated every time you see your doctor? Like you aren’t being heard and not getting the help you need? My guess is that if you are feeling disappointed with your visits with your pain doctor, you probably aren’t alone.

Let’s face it, it can be difficult to create a satisfying doctor-patient relationship, largely because time together is so limited. Physicians only have about 15 minutes to meet with their patients, and much of that time is spent focused on a computer screen doing electronic record-keeping (which frustrates everyone). Making matters worse, the fallout from the opioid crisis has put tremendous pressure on doctors to focus more time and attention on precautionary protocols, further lessening the time we have to devote to treating patients. All of this can leave very little time for you to have meaningful conversations with your doctor.

To get the most out of your time with your doctor, arm yourself with a strategic plan. Here are a few tips for productive appointments that will result in better pain management:

  • Have a clear goal: Be clear, with yourself and with your doctor, about your true goals. For example, you may want to go back to work, run a 5K again, or play catch with your kids. Whatever the goals may be, that is where you want to keep the focus when meeting with your physicians. Sure, you may want to be pain-free so you can do whatever you want, but keeping your goals more practical and tangible will move things along in a more positive direction.
  • Be descriptive: Let your doctor know exactly what is standing in the way of you reaching your goals. Remember – the most important part of any evaluation is what the patient communicates to their doctor; test results and MRI reports should be secondary. When you walk, where exactly does it hurt? Is it a sharp pain, dull ache, or burning sensation? The more descriptive the picture, the better equipped your physician will be to understand how to help you. Try to be clear and focused at your appointment, and avoid tangents or deviating from your script.
  • Take notes: Write out your questions and concerns ahead of time to ensure your doctor covers what is most important to you. Sometimes medical appointments can feel overwhelming, making it hard to remember key details later. So, take notes during your visit, or bring somebody to take notes for you, so you can review it all later (having your doctor write things down for you or print something off the computer takes precious time away from your appointment, so do as much of the note-taking on your own as you can).
  • Talk about how you function: Regardless of what type of pain problems you may have, there is a good chance that it is impacting how you function on a daily basis. That includes everything from walking, driving, doing chores at home, to working and playing. And how well you can engage in these types of activities directly correlates to your quality of life, sense of independence, and general happiness. Shift the focus of your medical visits away from just how you feel, and more toward how you function.
  • Acknowledge progress: Resist the temptation to unload only negative feedback and complaints. Be sure to let your physician know what is helping, and talk about the steps you’re taking to improve your health. Discussing the positive impact that your work together is having in your life can help your doctor-patient relationship grow and deepen.

Try incorporating these 5 basic strategies into your future appointments and watch your results and satisfaction rise to new heights.

Article Provided By: WebMD

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Symptoms and Causes of CRPS

Following an injury or surgery, even something as simple as a sprained ankle, some people begin experiencing intense pain that seems to spread from the injury and makes the entire limb feel on fire or as if electrical shocks are running up and down the area. Often, doctors diagnose these individuals with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS), a condition for which there are many causes and symptoms.

1. What is Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome is a rare condition that can occur after surgery, stroke, heart attack, or an injury. It is thought to be an unusual autoimmune response to the trauma. Unfortunately, this pain is often more impactful than the injury or preceding illness itself.

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2. What Causes Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome is believed to be caused by the malfunction of, or from damage to, the peripheral and central nervous systems, combined with the immune response. The pain causes the immune system to overreact, resulting in swelling and stiffness in the affected joints. The initial cause is the trauma, which leads to a cascade of events resulting in complex regional pain syndrome.

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3. How Long Does Complex Regional Pain Syndrom Last?

Complex regional pain syndrome is often a chronic condition lasting more than six months. You may experience symptoms for a while and go into remission, only to have the condition flare up again at a later date. CRPS will affect some people just once and never again, while others are in constant pain and need treatment regularly.

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4. What are the Symptoms of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome manifests itself in several ways. You may feel constant dull or severe pain, or feel electric shocks or “pins and needles”; others describe the pain as burning and intense. Some people with CRPS have difficulty moving the affected limb, or the pain may travel to the opposite limb, as well. You may experience sweating in the affected area, where the skin may appear thin and shiny. Some people notice changes to hair and nail growth patterns and have tremors or jerking in the limb. Lastly, the affected limb may change color, becoming purple, red, blue, blotchy, or pale.

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5. How Does a Doctor Diagnose Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

There is no one test that definitively diagnoses complex regional pain syndrome. Instead, your doctor will look at your past case history and your symptoms and make an evaluation. He or she may run tests to rule out other diseases since the symptoms of complex regional pain syndrome mimic other diseases with different treatments.

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6. Are There Different Types of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

There are two types of complex regional pain syndrome: type 1 and type 2. Most people (90 percent) have type 1 complex regional pain syndrome. Also called reflex sympathetic dystrophy syndrome or RSD, it occurs following trauma that did not damage the nerves. Type 2 or causalgia occurs when the trauma damages the nerves.

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7. Complications of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

If you fail to receive treatment for CRPS, you could experience severe complications including atrophy and muscle contraction. Atrophy causes your muscles, skin, and bones deteriorate due to lack of use. Affected extremities become weakened to the point where they cannot be used at all. Alternatively, your muscles may begin to contract, fixing the injured body part in one position, again rendering the limb unusable.

 

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8. How is Complex Regional Pain Syndrom Treated?

There are many options for treating complex regional pain syndrome. Your doctor may prescribe physical therapy, medications, and psychotherapy. You may find some relief from sympathetic nerve blocks, spinal cord stimulation, neurostimulation, intrathecal drug pumps, or Graded Motor imagery. Some people find alternative therapies helpful and turn to acupuncture, chiropractic, and biofeedback for relief. Other modalities that work toward relaxing the limb include behavior modification, relaxation techniques, progressive muscle relaxation, and guided motion therapy.

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9. Who is At Risk of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome may affect anyone at any age, but the median age is 40. Children and adults younger than 30 have been known to develop CRPS. Women seem to develop the condition more than men, but men can get it, too. Anyone who has had an injury is at risk, especially if the injury affects the extremities.

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10. What is the Prognosis for Recovery from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

The earlier CRPS is diagnosed and treated, the better the prognosis. Younger people, especially those under the age of 20 are more likely to recover from complex regional pain syndrome than older individuals. However, the disorder is different for everyone and some people deal with chronic pain and disability, even with treatment.

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Article Provided By: FactyHealth

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If you would like to discuss what Carolina Pain Scrambler do to help relieve your chronic pain symptoms or receive more information on our treatment process, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-520-5011 or you can email us at info@carolinapainscrambler.com
Peripheral Neuropathy, Carpal Tunnel, Nerve Pain Relief, Pain therapy

When Your Pain Is Disabling

Pain can entirely change our lives. Ongoing pain problems can lead to disabilities like not being able to work, drive, or even maintain a home. Pain in a dominant hand or arm can make it difficult to button a shirt, comb hair, or carry groceries. Lower back pain can make it hard to sit, stand, bend, tie shoelaces, or just about anything else you can imagine. Intense, recurring headaches, like migraines, can make it difficult to concentrate, listen, read, eat, or even turn the lights on. When your pain is disabling – it is called high-impact chronic pain. Research done on high-impact chronic pain by groups like the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health have published some important findings:

  • Approximately 10.6 million Americans, or 4.8% of the population, have high-impact chronic pain.
  • Disability is typically more commonly associated with chronic pain than with a number of other chronic conditions, including stroke and kidney failure.
  • Those with high-impact chronic pain reported higher levels of mental health problems and cognitive problems, compared to those with chronic pain without disability.
  • High-impact patients reported greater difficulty performing daily self-care activity and greater healthcare utilization.

These findings suggest that an awful lot of folks are not only living with intense pain, but also experiencing life-altering limitations as a result.

When pain becomes this overwhelming, pain management becomes a far bigger challenge. Finding the best pain relief strategies while also exploring ways of engaging more with daily activities can seem like a daunting task. How can you reduce the effect that pain has on your life without undoing all the hard work you have put in to get the pain under better control?

For starters, I think it helps to focus on only a couple of tasks at a time. What function or activity would be most meaningful to have back in your life? For example, becoming just a bit more mobile can mean the difference between spending more time with friends or missing out, and being able to cook a prized recipe once again will delight all who get to enjoy it with you. Consider consulting with an occupational therapist that typically specialize in helping patients hone in skills that boost their ability to perform home or work activities.

It isn’t easy to do any activity that you haven’t done in a while. There is a good chance that being in pain has caused important muscles groups to get deconditioned and stiff, and overdoing it too quickly will only set off the pain. But building back up a strong foundation or core that can help support your arms, legs, and spine as they become more active helps prevent overstressing them. Working with a physical therapist or exercise expert can help you find ways to recondition key muscle groups and build up more foundational or core stability, so you can do more with less pain. Diminishing the impact of pain is a much taller order than getting physically stronger. Research has taught us that those living with high-impact chronic pain often experience psychological distress and mood disorders like depression and anxiety. It is hard to function when you feel overwhelmed, so try to get involved in practices that can bring a sense of calm – meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, enjoying nature, or seeing a counselor all have the potential to help. If you are suffering from a challenging chronic pain problem and feel you and your doctors have done your best to manage the symptoms, consider having a conversation with your healthcare team about how you might be able to lessen the impact that your pain has on your life.
Article Provided By: WebMD

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If you would like to discuss what Carolina Pain Scrambler do to help relieve your chronic pain symptoms or receive more information on our treatment process, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-520-5011 or you can email us at info@carolinapainscrambler.com
Carpal Tunnel, Nerve Pain Therapy, Pain Relief, CIPN, Greenville, South Carolina

Good Friend to Someone in Chronic Pain

Being a Good Friend to Someone with Chronic Pain

Many individuals experience acute or chronic pain at some point in their life. Many that suffer from chronic pain can go years without finding the appropriate relief which leads to extended discomfort, depression, and a sense of loneliness.

Chronic pain affects everyone surrounding the actual sufferer. Frustration and exhaustion can consume the sufferer making it difficult to even get through the day. Many suffers don’t see how their emotions and attitude are being inflicted on others around them. Lifestyle changes alter the relationships with family, friends, and colleagues. If you have no direct experience with chronic pain, you might not able to relate adding additional stress and anxiety to their life.

Listed below are a few tips to help someone with chronic pain:

  • Ask to attend their appointments or therapy sessions. You will be able to relate and discuss their pain.
  • Educate yourself. With medical research and their history of chronic pain.
  • Don’t feel sorry for yourself. The sufferer doesn’t want to burden you or be in a constant foul mood. Try putting yourself in their shoes. Treasure your relationship!
  • Offer a lending hand. Help clean their house, drive them to the grocery store, or any other chore.
  • Listen. At times they just want to be heard!
  • Accept Cancellations. Sufferers like to be included even if they regularly cancel.
  • Limit talking about their pain. Distract yourselves with hobbies that interest you both.
  • Be supportive. Learn and teach them how to be mentally and physically independent.
  • Be sensitive and positive. Criticism, stress, and conflict increases pain. Avoid questioning the sufferer’s pain this can hurt them and your relationship.
  • Remember to take care of yourself. Take time out to recharge. Research indicates spouses of those dealing with chronic pain show increased weakened immune system, withdrawal, discouragement, loneliness, and deteriorating physical health. It can be helpful to better understand how to care for your loved one while always remembering to take care of yourself.

Article Provided By: PainScale

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If you would like to discuss what Carolina Pain Scrambler do to help relieve your chronic pain symptoms or receive more information on our treatment process, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-520-5011 or you can email us at info@carolinapainscrambler.com
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