Posts Tagged: fibromyalgia

Surrey Pain & Wellness Chiropractic – Wellness Series Part 3 of 3

Is wellness physical health?  Quality of life?  Freedom from pain?

Health and wellness is all of these things.  Doctors and scientists have studied the lifestyles and genetics of people from different periods in history, from different cultures and environments to help understand health and longevity. This month the Surrey Pain & Wellness Chiropractic blog is focusing on wellness – welcome to part three of this three part series, a focus on freedom from pain.

 

Freedom from Pain

Pain.  No one needs to describe what it feels like – we can all identify with it, whether it’s the intense sensation of a scrape, burn or injury or something much more serious.

Even if you don’t know the cause of your pain, pain tells us that something in our body isn’t right.  So do you visit the doctor? The chiropractor?  Physiotherapist or massage therapist?  Take medication? Vitamins?  All or none of the above?

When pain becomes chronic – generally lasting at least three months, it becomes something else entirely.    The physical and emotional core is stressed, fatigued and their day-to-day living is affected.  Chronic pain can undermines a person’s well-being,  productivity and even of the essence of who they are, as the focus of each day is on how to eradicate the pain and trying all of the above remedies, and many others.

Chronic pain is complex in that it can differ tremendously – even between individuals  who suffer from the exact same injury or disease.   This can be because of a co-existing condition or injury or many other environmental or psychological factors that must be factored into how an individual perceives and experiences pain.

Diagnosing Chronic Pain

There is no way to measure how pain varies between individuals, but first and foremost, health care providers must take the patient’s description and feedback into account.   This is probably more important than what the medical books suggest a patient could or should be feeling for any condition.

A full physical examination can provide more insight into the cause of chronic pain.  However, more detailed and technical examinations will likely be made and may include x-ray, MRI, EEG, blood tests, etc.

Managing & Treating Chronic Pain

The goal of pain management is to improve the day-to-day function and quality of life for the patient, and as mentioned that varies from person to person.

Whatever treatment regime is it is important to remember that chronic pain is treatable, and may require a combination of many approaches, such as physical activity, relaxation, nutrition and access to health care.  Different health care providers will also recommend different approaches or courses of treatment.  While it is important for patients who suffer from chronic pain to explore a range of different health care providers, it is always best to be up front with each as to what kinds of treatments, medications etc. have been used in the past.  Each patient should document this not only to share with other health care providers, but as a reference for themselves and a tool for making decisions on what is working and what is not.

Though chronic pain is an individual and personal health issue – it is also a major issue for public health, as well as  family, friends, employers and health care providers who are affected and need to give ongoing support for those who suffer from the physical as well as the emotional impact of chronic pain.

Chiropractic treatments can be useful in reducing  many kinds of pain, and may be most effective with chronic pain, since  pain  impacts the structure and function of the body – how you move, your posture and the quality of sleep you have.  Even organic disease causes reactions in the body’s skeletal and muscular functioning that can increase the level of pain in the body overall.

Surrey Pain & Wellness Chiropractic Clinic welcomes feedback and insight for those who have suffered with chronic pain, whether or not chiropractic is a part of your current or ongoing recovery from chronic pain.

If you currently suffer from chronic pain or know someone who does, refer them to Surrey Pain & Wellness Clinic for a consultation – our goal is to let the healing begin.  604.507.9929.

 

 

The Hip Bone’s Connected to the Thigh Bone…

Arthritis in the hip (and other parts of the body)

The hip joint is a marvellous feat of engineering and is in fact, one of the strongest and most complex joints in the human body, enabling a range of movements, including the most basic of them all -  walking.

With the complexity of the hip, there is also much that can go wrong.  To understand why, we need to know a little bit about the anatomy of the hip.   A ball and socket joint connects the hip bone to the thigh bone.  A thin, smooth, cushioning cartilage, known as articular cartilage, covers the moving surfaces inside the joint.  This serves as a shock absorber and lubrication for the bones.

Cartilage is subject to wear and tear.  If the stress on the joint is too high, articular cartilage degenerates and is worn away, leaving the bones to rub against each other, causing pain, swelling, stiffness, muscle weakness, and progressive loss of mobility.   The condition -  known as arthritis – affects a large percentage of people over the age of 50.

In advanced arthritis, the articular cartilage of the hip is completely worn away and the bones of the hip come into direct contact.  This condition, known as osteoarthritis, is a severe inflammation of the joints accompanied by chronic pain.  Another common type of arthritis that can affect the hip is rheumatoid arthritis.  This is caused by a dysfunction of the immune system.  Abnormal antibodies are produced that get deposited in the lining tissue of the joints, causing chronic inflammation and slow destruction of cartilage.  All joints may be affected by rheumatoid arthritis and both sides of the body are affected equally.

The hip joint is a ‘ball and socket’ joint that allows movement between the thigh bone (femur), and the hip bone (pelvis)

Whatever the type of arthritis, some cases can be successfully managed by conservative means such as:

- Medication
- Physiotherapy
- Weight Control
- Modification of leisure/sporting activities

Therapies at the Surrey Pain & Wellness Clinic that may be of interest for people with rheumatoid or osteoarthritis include:

Chiropractic care to help structurally realign the joint to reduce stress and slow down the damaging process.

Laser pain therapy to manage/eliminate cycles of pain and significantly reduce inflammation in the joint.  Laser therapy is completely safe for long term use in managing such severe, chronic conditions (and provides better results and longer term results than pain killers)

Customized foot orthotics can also prove valuable and are complementary to the above therapies in terms of pain relief, supporting alignment and function and therefore contributing to stability and functional motions such as walking and sports.

Managing arthritic pain can help you resume gentle activities and leisure pastimes, allowing patients at Surrey Pain & Wellness to become stronger and more mobile and an overall feeling of improved health and well being.