Research has estimated that almost 50 million Americans will suffer from chronic pain during some period of their lives. In many cases, pain management can be effected and treated by your regular health care professional. However, in cases of severe difficulty, you may require the specialist services of a Pain Clinic. These facilities have a number of benefits and generally can offer the following services:
1. Prescribe Pain Medication:
This is usually the first course of treatment. The pain clinic will usually begin with a recommendation for non-prescription medication before proceeding to stronger pain medication. This can vary from muscle relaxants through to antidepressants, depending on your particular symptoms and condition.
2. Pain Injections:
The clinic may also suggest a localized injection to provide pain and symptomatic relief. These injections can include epidural steroids through to a facet joint injection. This is a common approach in conditions or injuries in the neck, back or legs.
3. Provide a Nerve Block:
A nerve block can influence the pain signals and how they are transmitted to the brain. Blocking the nerve communication process can block the pain and reduce discomfort. A common example of this is an epidural.
4. Professional Physical Therapy:
Physical therapy is commonly used as a chronic pain treatment method. The therapist will tailor a plan of exercises and stretches which can assist with pain alleviation while increasing mobility of the muscle. The type of therapy can vary according to your specific requirements but may include aquatic exercise, stretches or hot and cold treatments.
5. Chiropractic Services:
This form of massage and stretching is often used to treat certain forms of chronic pain. The technique is used to realign the joint and release any tension in the muscles. This can be very beneficial for reducing pain in a targeted area.
6. Acupuncture Services:
Some forms of Pain Clinic also offer acupuncture. This is an alternative therapy, which has been used for thousands of years. Needles are placed at particular pressure points along the body. This is said to correct energy flow and imbalances within the body to provide pain relief and recovery.
7. Electric Stimulation:
This is a somewhat controversial alternative therapy. Small amounts of electricity are delivered to the body in targeted areas, this is said to interfere with pain receptors and provide pain management. Common forms of this treatment include TENS.
8. Counseling Services:
In some cases chronic pain can be the result of depression or stress. If appropriate, counseling services can be used to reduce anxiety and provide alternative coping mechanisms. Many people have found relaxation therapy or hypnosis extremely beneficial for controlling pain.
This is usually the last resort for chronic pain and is generally only recommended if the prognosis is good. A pain clinic can provide information about alternative options and assist you with the decision to consider surgery.
If you are experiencing chronic pain, a pain clinic could provide the solution you have been looking for. They will assess your condition and will be able to provide guidance as to the treatment best suited to your requirements.