Just about anyone and everyone in their lifetime can experience some form of pain. If you cut yourself cooking, experience cramping, or burn yourself, these pain signals are your body’s language in telling your brain that something is not right.
Chronic pain is very different from these types of pains mentioned. With Chronic pain, your body continually hurts for weeks, months and even years. Chronic Pain is defined by physicians as pain that is lasting for 3 to 6 months or longer.
Chronic pain is known to have very real effects on living day to day. Especially your mental health. If you have the opportunity to speak with a doctor and communicate your chronic pain experiences, there are ways to treat it.
The feelings of pain are coming from series of messages that are being sent through your nervous system. When you experience something that hurts yourself, the event of injury sends messages to the pain sensors in the area that was hurt. Electrical signals are sent and travel from nerve to nerve until eventually reaching your brain. The brain then processes the messages and responds by sending out responses that you have been hurt.
For some they are lucky enough to have the signals stop when the injury is resolved or healed. With Chronic Pain, the nerve signals continually keep firing even if healing has happened.
Some common conditions that involve chronic pain are from injury or a prolonged health condition. Some leading causes of Chronic pain are:
Ranges of Chronic Pain
Chronic pain comes in ranges of mild to severe. It can continue, come and go and even last day to day. The pain can sometimes feel like:
Other Chronic Pain Symptoms
Pain can be just one of the many symptoms involved with chronic pain. Some other symptoms can include:
Ultimately, Chronic pain can take a very strong toll on your daily life and prevent you from having a quality of life that is beneficial to yourself and your loved ones. Your self-esteem can take a strong hit and make you feel anger, depression, anxiety, and frustration.
Realizing and recognizing that your chronic pain is a problem is the first step in finding a potential treatment. Begin by talking to a physician about your symptoms. Then together, you can identify the source of the pain and create a plan for treatment that takes into account your individual lifestyle and overall health.
Over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription medications are the most common methods of managing chronic pain. For most, a combination of medication and physical therapy is most effective. Medication may be combined with:
Finding the perfect mix is hard but will be of more beneficial in the long term. Below we have detailed some examples of OTC and Prescription forms of pain relief as well as their benefits and limitations.
The most common types of OTC pain relievers are acetaminophen (Tylenol) and non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Types of NSAIDs include:
Both acetaminophen and NSAIDs can be used successfully to relieve mild pain, reduce inflammation and swelling which are the most common symptoms of chronic pain. However, long term use of these OTC drugs can have potentially severe side effects. We advise that you always consult with your doctor or registers medical professional when considering any form of self medication.
Topical Pain Relief
Oral medications are not the only form of OTC pain relief. Topical Creams are also available. These are often used to relieve pain associated with arthritis and muscle aches. It should be pointed out that they also provide a placebo effect i.e. sore muscles can feel better because you rubbed them better not necessarily because you used the cream.
Prescription medications are usually used for chronic pain when over the counter options do not work. These types of medication are more powerful and sometimes over used for a quick fix to a long term solution with highly likely negative side effects (opioid addiction).
Several major classes of medications are used to treat chronic pain. They are:
Possible Prescription Medication Side Effects
These types of medications can cause a variety of side effects that can range from mild to severe. Example of these potential side effects are:
Due to the negative publicity modern opioid medication has been receiving recently many people are turning to effect natural treatments such as CBD oil (cannabidiol) instead. CBD Oil is extracted from hemp and is one of over 60 compounds called cannabinoids which are found in different plants including the cannabis plant. CBD does not produce euphoria or a psychoactive high which is caused by THC which also comes from the cannabis plant. This is because CBD does not affect the same receptors in the brain that THC does.
While you can get CBD from both the cannabis and hemp plant, the hemp plant does not have any traces of THC where CBD from the cannabis plant will likely have ineffective trace amounts of THC. In other words, if you are using CBD oil you do not need to worry about getting high regardless of whether or not it comes from a cannabis or hemp plant.
Our bodies have a system called the endocannabinoid system which is responsible for regulating the body via the brain and the immune system as well as other areas. When we have chronic pain as well as other issues our endocannabinoid system is not producing enough of our own cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) to help deal with the issues. Taking CBD oil or THC in other cases influences our ECS to produce more of what we need to get better. It brings our body back into balance. Using CBD oil is better than opioids because it is a natural treatment with virtually major side effects.
According to some small studies and anecdotal evidence from users, CBD has been used successfully to relieve pain associated with arthritis. Topical gels and creams are a great method of relieving pain from arthritis. Research studies have found that the inflammatory properties provided by CBD oil result in significant drops in inflammation and helping with the side effects of chronic pain without having any additional side effects. For example, CBD oil has relieved someone of chronic pain and also made them feel more relaxed, helped them sleep better or improved their appetite.
Middle Back Pain
Middle Back Pain is caused and comes from other underlying diseases and conditions that affect the back. Some health related conditions are compression fractures, muscle strain, or herniated disks. Modern treatments of these these issues can create symptoms through dangerous medications (NSAIDs_ that create long ongoing health issues, such as damage to organs (liver damage), dependency and even addiction.
CBD oil is being used by patients to relieve back pain in similar ways to arthritis i.e. acting as an anti-inflammatory and mood stabilizer. Once again CBD oil is proving to the “Swiss army knife” of medications but further studies are needed to provide official findings.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) an autoimmune disease that through the nerves and brain affects the entire body. One of the most common symptoms of MS are muscle spasms. These spasms can be so powerful, that they cause continual and constant pain for some people suffering from the condition. Like many serious illnesses CBD oil is great for people with a serious condition (MS) but in this case it is good at helping the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis not curing the cause. CBD oil can do this by interacting with the immune system as mentioned before and bringing it under control (providing balance).
Consuming CBD oil is just as simple as popping a pill, or rubbing on an ointment. The most common way to take CBD oil is in the form of crystals or oils. The oils are made using the oils of either the hemp or cannabis plant and combined with other essential oils. Although mixed other oils most treatments are high in CBD purity and only have essential oils added for flavor properties. Standard oils taste basic but you can get further flavors from other providers. It is advised that you avoid flavors if you are looking for a high purity (Full Spectrum), which is most beneficial for medical purposes.
You can consume the CBD crystals and oils by placing them under the tongue to dissolve, inhale by smoking or using a vape pen, or through a dab rig. The crystals are also used by being sprinkled onto a joint or into a pipe for a boost. Some even like to use the crystals in their food or smoothies, or drinks. You can purchase CBD from any dispensary that sells the oil, oil cartridges and are free from THC that contain CBD for your pain relief.
Even as a new product in a world of a great many supplements, CBD excels in modern society as a naturally calming and soothing form of pain relief. Many people are becoming accustomed to the benefits of CBD products. To find out whether you can benefit from these treatments, we encourage you to do your own research or ask your medical professional where you can find CBD oil to try it for your own individual medical needs.
At the end of the day, living with chronic pain daily is enough for many people to look for alternatives compared to the dangerous, and toxic medicines that we are used to. Looking to and using natural alternatives are starting to become known as safer and better and are more beneficial. Fighting the negative stigmas that have been created through reading and researching the different studies and types of research that are going into Cannabis and CBD products, can help with having better discussions about what we can do to better our lives, especially those living with chronic pain.