Pain is a serious problem in today’s world. An estimated 1 out of every 5 Americans suffers from some degree of chronic pain, and 8 percent of those sufferers find the pain so intense that they can’t pursue their normal activities. It’s little wonder, then, that painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs have grown into such a mammoth industry.
Unfortunately, these drugs offer their own share of troubles, from addiction to dangerous effects on internal organs. Many people are now seeking effective pain relief that doesn’t come from a pill bottle. If you’re one of those people, you need to know about the amazing pain-busting potential of physical therapy.
As stated by the APTA website, “The White House has announced that APTA is among the organizations that have joined a public-private partnership to combat opioid usage and prescription drug abuse, and that the association will reach out to the public and its members to deliver the message that pain can be effectively managed through conservative, non drug approaches.
Physical therapists can help individuals manage pain, and greater use of physical therapy could make a real impact on the tragic levels of drug abuse in this country—abuse that often begins with a prescription for pain medication.”
So, instead of turning to opioids, consider physical therapy first!
Physical therapy offers numerous advantages as a safe, effective, all-natural pain management tool. A physical therapist takes each individual’s symptoms (and those symptoms’ underlying causes) into account when devising a physical therapy plan for pain management. Your plan might include modalities such as:
Physical therapy appears to have one more major contribution to make toward freeing pain sufferers from their symptoms.
Some physical therapists have adopted “brain-rewiring” techniques such as graded motor imagery to help patients develop a new perception of their pain – one that allows them to master and minimize their responses to it. This form of physical therapy seeks to give individuals more control over their pain so that they can tolerate more exercise, which then reduces the pain even more.
Physical therapy can do more than just help you feel better. By providing you with non-pharmaceutical pain control measures, this form of care can help you steer clear of the side effects of prescription and non-prescription drugs.
Better yet, you’re going beyond the temporary numbing of your symptoms by actually treating the underlying causes of those symptoms. Why settle for the illusion of relief when you can have the real thing — and improve your health and functionality in the process?
A variety of over-the-counter and prescription medications promise to ease pain and inflammation temporarily. Steroids do this by suppressing the immune system for people suffering from painful auto-immune disorders (such as rheumatoid arthritis).
That same immune-suppressing power, however, also makes the body more vulnerable to infection. Long-term steroid use has also been associated with cataracts, glaucoma, hypertension, water retention, acne, high blood sugar and osteoporosis. NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) block the production of inflammatory chemicals in the body.
These drugs aren’t necessarily safe, either. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding and kidney damage in some individuals. They have also been associated with elevated heart attack and stroke risks.
Perhaps the most ominous danger comes from opioid drugs. Opioids can deaden more than just pain. These powerful drugs caused over 70,000 fatal overdoses in 2017 alone. Some of these deaths may have been related to recreational drug use, but over 60 percent of the deceased were chronic pain sufferers.
Opioids are the most commonly used medication for pain management across the United States. Even though they are commonplace, they contain some shockingly harmful facts:
Our physical therapist will be happy to create a pain management program just for you. Contact ProMotion Rehab and Sports Medicine today for a consultation!