September is Pain Awareness month, a full month of spreading awareness about the causes, treatments, and management of pain and chronic pain disorders.
Pain Awareness month originated in 2001 when a coalition of members from The American Chronic Pain Association (ACPA) sought to establish a time of the year to focus on individuals who experience chronic pain in any region of their body, subsequently impacting their daily lives. The purpose of Pain Awareness Month is to recognize the many different forms of pain and areas of persistent pain we or loved ones experience and how we can manage this kind of pain as it progresses throughout our lives.
Common Sites for Persistent Pain
The most common sites of pain and chronic pain in adults include:
- post-surgical pain.
- post-trauma pain.
- lower back pain.
- pain associated with cancer.
- arthritis pain.
- neurogenic pain (pain caused by nerve damage)
- psychogenic pain (pain that isn’t caused by disease, injury, or nerve damage)
Causes of Chronic Pain
There can be many causes of chronic pain, including:
- chronic fatigue syndrome: characterized by extreme, prolonged weariness that’s often accompanied by pain.
- endometriosis: a painful disorder that occurs when the uterine lining grows outside of the uterus.
- fibromyalgia: widespread pain in the bones and muscles.
- rheumatoid arthritis: a long-term autoimmune disorder that primarily affects joints, typically resulting in warm, swollen, and painful joints. Pain and stiffness often worsen following rest.
- CRPS: Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a chronic pain condition that most often affects one limb (arm, leg, hand, or foot) typically after an extreme injury.
- inflammatory bowel disease: a group of conditions that causes painful, chronic inflammation in the digestive tract.
- interstitial cystitis: a chronic disorder marked by bladder pressure and pain.
- temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ): a condition that causes painful clicking, popping, or locking of the jaw.
- vulvodynia: chronic vulva pain that occurs with no obvious cause.
Pain Prevalence in Women vs. Men
Men and women can be prone to different pain sites, longevity, and severity. According to the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP), women generally report experiencing more recurrent pain, severe paint, and longer-lasting symptoms of pain than men. Doctors suspect different reasons for this statistic is related to higher occurrences of extreme changes in hormone levels in women vs men, endometriosis diagnosis on the rise, and more painful conditions that show a greater prevalence in women like migraine headaches, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, and osteoarthritis.
Although women do report a higher level of pain and more instances of persistent pain than men, they are less likely to seek help or treatment.
Ketamine Infusion Therapy could be the solution for your persistent pain. Don’t put off scheduling a free consultation if you are struggling with chronic pain, or other conditions such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, and OCD. We’re here for you, and we would love to discuss your treatment options.
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The IASP: www.iasp-pain.org