Chronic pain disorders have been around since the dawn of man. If you were to compare 18th-century treatments to the 21st century, you will see that so much has changed and that chronic pain sufferers do have access to better options. Although a pain sufferer will say they still suffer, our technological advances have grown and will continue to grow as we learn more about the body and make changes to treatments. Whether you are dealing with hip arthritis or an autoimmune disease, there are options that can make your life more bearable.
Injections Have Come A Long Way
Steroid injections have been used for years to help manage chronic pain. Botox may be a better solution for a number of people. This is especially true for patients who have cerebral palsy, a disorder caused by neurological damage at birth. These patients often have chronic pain because they lack the spasticity when it comes to walking or being able to hold a spoon or fork. Botox will not only allow them to relax a little bit of pain and give them the ability to do some physical therapy to improve their mobility. Some arthritic patients have used Botox in conjunction with a lifestyle change to help improve their mobility and pain levels as well. But not all situations call for Botox! Patients suffering from severe back and neck injury will need a steroid injection for relief because it focuses solely on blocking the pain and is more powerful in that arena.
The Homebound Can Use Telemedicine
With technology allowing us to live in the George Jetson world, using Skype or FaceTime can have plenty of benefits outside of having a chat with a loved one far away. Many health organizations are now using those same tools in Telemedicine, the ability to diagnose and treat a patient over a video chat. Many chronic pain sufferers will tell you how painful it is to get into a car and drive to a doctors office, sit in an uncomfortable chair in the waiting room, then be poked and prodded by staff, and then another painful journey home. With telemedicine, they can meet with their doctor online and discuss one-on-one about their progress and do some movements to show the doctor what their situation is. If they need a medicine prescribed, the doctor can call it into a nearby pharmacy and a designated person can pick it up for them. Although physical doctor’s appointments are still encouraged on occasion, this form of appointment lowers canceling/rescheduling appointments due to too much pain or extra suffering on the patient.
Bedding Is More High-Tech
A bed can be a nightmare for any chronic pain sufferer. Fortunately, it’s been the inspiration for many new bed trends over the past 10-20 years. We saw it with the Craftmatic Adjustable Bed that let you control the position so that you could get the best sleep ever. Adjustable beds are still popular and have certainly come down in price since then. Now there is a new mattress in the market that adjusts to you. You still control the firmness in the mattress but as you sleep and move, it will inflate or deflate at specific pressure points to keep you well supported and ease some of your pain. Who knew a mattress would be able to do that?
Chronic pain is one of the worst things a person will have to deal with. We have developed plenty of medications to help with it and as our technology grows, we will have more tools at hand so that a sufferer can stop taking those meds.