If you are living with a chronic pain condition, then you will know only too well that it can affect every part of your life. Your inability to function as you used to or carry out the simplest of tasks can affect your mental health as well as impacting on personal and working relationships.
Many chronic pain conditions can worsen depending on diet, exercise levels, and the sufferer's general mindset. It's important to understand the signs that go hand in hand with a flare-up and monitor the triggers to allow you to manage the pain as effectively as possible. Food diaries in particular can be extremely beneficial as many foods go hand in hand with increased pain.
Here are 3 tips for anyone living with chronic pain.
There are no benefits to smoking, however, many people who suffer from chronic pain conditions smoke because they think it helps the pain – it doesn't. Nicotine activates certain white blood cells that release inflammation-increasing molecules which can make pain worse. It can also cause an increase in stress levels - another well-known trigger for pain flare-ups.
If you are a smoker, try to stop as soon as possible. Not only might you notice a reduction in your pain levels, but you will feel happier and healthier once you are smoke-free.
CBD (short for cannabidiol) is one of over 100 cannabinoids extracted from the leaves, stalks, and flowers of hemp plants.
It is used by many as a substitute for prescription medication due to its anti-inflammatory properties that can help to alleviate pain with little to no side effects.
CBD is said to minimize pain by interrupting the pain signals that travel to the brain. It can be taken orally by placing a few drops on the tongue, or via edible methods such as gummies and capsules.
Full spectrum CBD oil is particularly effective for chronic pain as it contains all the cannabis nutrients that help to relieve both inflammation and pain.
There are various strains of CBD available, so it's worthwhile doing some research to find a product that best suits your needs.
A warm bath can not only relax your mind, but the combination of buoyancy and heat is also great for your joints and muscles. Many sufferers of pain conditions such as fibromyalgia suggest that a warm bath can provide instant overwhelming relief and substantially reduce pain within a matter of minutes.
Epsom salts are a natural anti-inflammatory remedy that can be used in the bath to treat muscle aches and are very popular with pain sufferers. It's recommended to have an Epsom salt bath around 3 times a week, and soak for at least 10 minutes each time. Hydrotherapy has been around for centuries, so it is no wonder that baths are such a popular pain soothing aid.
A good soak in the bath will also promote a good night's sleep – something that many pain sufferers can struggle to achieve.