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Asking a question like, “What is pain?” might seem silly. Surely everyone knows what pain is, do they not? You accidentally brush your hand on a hot stove or bang your elbow on a table and suddenly it hurts. Pain is a common part of everyday life and it helps us to learn to avoid situations that might cause us harm. Once you know that touching a hot stove is painful, your try to avoid doing it again.

Pain is also a big part of our earliest life experiences. Toddlers fall down and bump into things as they learn to walk and babies cry at the sudden pain of a routine injection. In recent study, researchers observed children aged 1-2 years in a play centre and reported at least one painful event (such as a fall or a bump) per... Read more

August 14, 2020 / U.S. Pain Foundation By: Ellen Lenox Smith

During this pandemic, many of you are experiencing what those of us have had to learn to live with a chronic condition. You are wearing masks, washing hands frequently, isolated from many, avoiding stores, crowds and learning to live an altered life until this pandemic lifts. And when that happens, you will get to go back to a version of the life you knew. And I and others in circumstances like me will get to return to the help we need to live a better quality of life that has been put on hold.

For people like me, this pandemic has caused the cancellation of the much needed but defined as non-essential medical help, I am used to turning to. For example, I was... Read more

March 16, 2020 / U. S. Pain Foundation By Emily Lemiska

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, I could be at higher risk of contracting serious illness from COVID-19. I live with rare neck and spinal cord defects, known as Klippel-Feil syndrome, which cause serious, debilitating pain. The condition affects my posture, which translates into reduced lung capacity. I also have the immune system of a flea; a cold that my husband recovers from in one week takes me about six weeks. My increased risk is minor compared to others, but it’s still scary. But I’ve come to realize that, in many ways, living with chronic health issues for nearly a decade has prepared me for a worldwide pandemic. 1. DON’T THREATEN ME... Read more

Conditions Most Commonly Seen in American Adults

By Erica Jacques – Medically reviewed by Jenny Sweigard, MD on April 13, 2020

Chronic pain is commonly defined as any pain that lasts more than 12 weeks. Whereas, acute pain is the normal sensation which alerts us to an injury or illness, chronic pain is one that persists, often for months or even longer.

Chronic pain is estimated to affect 20 percent of U.S, adults. It can be caused by a musculoskeletal injury (involving the bones, muscles or joints), nervous system dysfunction, chronic diseases, and autoimmune disorders.

Learn about some of the most common causes affecting American adults today below.

CHRONIC BACK PAIN

According to research... Read more

Chronic pain, especially severe pain, can have an enormous impact on our emotional health. Research has shown that people with pain are significantly more likely to experience anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. Remember that you are not atypical, oversensitive, or weak for experiencing emotional distress because of pain. These are normal, reasonable responses to physical suffering and its associated limitations.

Unfortunately, despite the widely recognized psychosocial effects of pain, caring for mental health often takes a backseat to treating physical symptoms. But stress levels exacerbate chronic pain, and chronic pain exacerbates stress levels. This does not mean the pain is “all in your head.” It simply means... Read more

Each person with pain is entirely unique; a treatment that works well for one individual may cause a negative reaction for someone else. People with pain often go through a long process of trial and error to identify what works best for them. While it is easy to get frustrated when a certain therapy option doesn’t work, don’t give up. Most likely, something else will help—you just have to keep looking.

Once you receive a chronic pain diagnosis or have lived with pain for more than three months, it’s a good idea to get connected with a pain specialist. While clinicians in specialties like neurology and orthopedics may be able to offer some pain management options, it’s important to have someone on your team who is an expert in... Read more

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