Chronic Pain Articles

Talking Pain to your Doctor

Chronic Pain Conditions, Lifestyle Tips for Chronic Pain, Therapies & Treatments
How to talk to your doctor about pain On a scale of 0 to 10 what is your pain? Patients who are asked to describe the level of their pain using a numerical scale or smiley faces. Pain scales are used from diagnosis to recovery and often help guide treatment. While the pain scale helps evaluate the pain a patient feels, it’s not the whole story. Here are a few ways of talking to your doctor about pain, to help assess the best treatment options for you. Be Creative Descriptive words can often be helpful when describing your pain to a doctor. Certain conditions or injuries can have specific sensations, such as neuropathy with numbness and tingling sensations can signify nerve damage. Next time you need to describe pain, here…
Read More

Platelet Rich Plasma How Does it Work?

Platelet Rich Plasma, Regenerative medicine
PRP Therapy How Does it Work? Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy is a growing area in pain management. It is a regenerative medicine that uses a patient’s own blood cells to treat pain. According to the American Association of Orthopedic Medicine, PRP shows promise for treating ailments such as osteoarthritis in joints, rotator cuff tears, plantar fasciitis, ACL injuries, and much more. Platelet Rich Plasma is a minimally invasive procedure, that can be performed in office. Platelet rich plasma can help many conditions, including knee pain. How PRP Works The process of platelet rich plasma therapy begins with Dr. Castillo drawing a blood and placing it in a centrifuge to be spun down to separate platelets from red blood cells. Dr. Castillo then takes the platelet concentrate and injects it…
Read More

Heat Therapy for Chronic pain

Lifestyle Tips for Chronic Pain, Therapies & Treatments
Simple remedies are often the best Those remedies your mom tells you to try, you know the ones.“Put your foot up. Ice it. Use the heating pad.” Can often be the best at relieving lower back pain. Heat therapy is one of those mother approved pain relief therapies. Using heat therapy to relieve lower back pain *apply heat for no longer than 20 minutes at a time. (same goes for icing an injury) Some of the benefits of applying heat therapy to injuries: Blood flow stimulation. Heat dilates blood vessels. When dilated this increases the flow of blood carrying oxygen and nutrients to the painful area.Sensory receptor stimulation. Similar to a massage heat stimulates sensory receptors, which muffles pain signals sent to the brain.Stretching soft tissues. Heat can help stretch…
Read More

Exercise Ball Therapy for Lower Back Pain

Chronic Pain Conditions, Therapies & Treatments
The exercise ball therapy is an exercise treatment option for back pain sufferers and is designed to help prevent or minimize further episodes of low back pain as part of a rehabilitation program. The exercise ball is effective in rehabilitation of the back because it strengthens and develops the core body muscles that help to stabilize the spine. With the exercise ball, also called a Swiss ball or physio ball, an element of instability is introduced to the exercise that one would not normally get in a floor exercise. The body responds naturally and automatically to this instability to keep balanced on the exercise ball. Over time, the muscles used to keep in balance on the exercise ball become stronger. In essence, individuals build strength in important back muscles and abdominal muscles without knowing…
Read More

PRP Therapy for Arthritis

Regenerative medicine, Therapies & Treatments
Platelet-rich plasma therapy, sometimes called PRP therapy or autologous conditioned plasma (ACP) therapy, attempts to take advantage of the blood's natural healing properties to repair damaged cartilage, tendons, ligaments, muscles, or even bone.Although not considered standard practice, a growing number of people are turning to PRP injections to treat an expanding list of orthopedic conditions, including osteoarthritis. It is most commonly used for knee osteoarthritis, but may be used on other joints as well.This article describes how experts think PRP works, who might consider PRP injections for osteoarthritis, how to choose a doctor, and the injection procedure. Also discussed is the available research examining whether PRP is an effective treatment for osteoarthritis. When treating osteoarthritis with platelet-rich plasma, a doctor injects PRP directly into the affected joint. The goal is to:…
Read More

10 Tips to Prevent Neck Pain

Chronic Pain Conditions, Lifestyle Tips for Chronic Pain
It’s probably safe to say that most of us at some point in time have woken up with neck pain or can recall an event or injury that resulted in neck pain. In fact, at any given time, 13% of American adults (women more than men) suffer from neck pain. Neck pain usually arises from muscles, tendons, and ligaments—commonly referred to as the soft tissues—in and around the cervical spine (the neck). Muscle strain and resulting muscle spasm is often caused by an underlying neck problem, such as spinal stenosis, arthritis, or disc degeneration and can be triggered from trauma but frequently occurs insidiously, or for no obvious or identifiable reason. Whether your neck pain is from a chronic condition or if you've just woken up with a stiff neck, the following tips should help…
Read More

Cervical Nerves

Chronic Pain Conditions, Nerve Pain
In addition to the seven cervical vertebrae, cervical anatomy features eight cervical nerve roots (C1-C8) that branch from the spinal cord and control motor and sensory abilities for different parts of the body. Each cervical nerve is named based on the lower cervical vertebra that it runs between. As an example, the C6 nerve root runs between the C5 vertebra and the C6 vertebra. Cervical Nerve Functions Each level of the cervical spine actually has two nerve roots—one on each side—that branch off from the spinal cord. Keeping with the aforementioned example at the C5-C6 level, each C6 nerve root exits the spinal canal through a bony hole (foramina) on both sides of the neck. From there, the C6 nerve root feeds into nerves that run down their own side’s…
Read More

11 Pain Control Techniques

Lifestyle Tips for Chronic Pain, Therapies & Treatments
To prepare for any chronic pain control technique, it is important to learn how to use focus and deep breathing to relax the body. Learning to relax takes practice, especially when you are in pain, but it is definitely worth it to be able to release muscle tension throughout the body and start to remove attention from the pain. Coping techniques for chronic pain begin with controlled deep breathing, as follows: Try putting yourself in a relaxed, reclining position in a dark room. Either shut your eyes or focus on a point. Then begin to slow down your breathing. Breathe deeply, using your chest. If you find your mind wandering or you are distracted, then think of a word, such as the word "Relax," and think it in time with…
Read More

Rheumatoid Arthritis vs Osteoarthritis

Chronic Pain Conditions
Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis both cause joint pain and stiffness. They are both forms of arthritis but have different causes and treatments.There are over 100 types of arthritis and related diseases. Two of the most common types are rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA). OA is more common than RA. Both OA and RA involve inflammation in the joints, but the inflammation in RA is much greater. Until recently, healthcare professionals believed that inflammation was not present in OA. OA and RA share some symptoms. RA can affect multiple joints in a subtype called polyarticular arthritis, and it tends to affect the body symmetrically. OA usually affects a few joints and typically occurs on only one side of the body. In this article, we take a look at the similarities and differences between RA and OA, including their symptoms, causes,…
Read More

5 Signs of Chronic Hamstring Tendinopathy

Chronic Pain Conditions
Just as your favorite pair of jeans can become worn and threadbare in the knees, your tendons can also develop chronic injury through wear-and-tear. Tendinopathy refers to a disease of a tendon. The clinical presentation includes tenderness on palpation and pain, often when exercising or with movement. Several terms have evolved in the medical terminology to refer to injuries that cause tendon pain: Tendinitis - acute tendon injury accompanied by inflammation. Why does chronic tendinopathy occur? There are 3 tendons in the back of the thigh that connect the hamstring muscles to the ischial tuberosity (the sit bone) in the pelvis. When people engage in sports or activities that subject these tendons to repetitive motions, the elastic collagen proteins in the tendon become injured and start to break down, causing degeneration of…
Read More