Do you understand your body's pain?
Take this 5 question quiz and find out!
Also it is important to know that all tissues heal at a relatively predictable rate even if there are other factors that might slow healing. Pain is often not very well correlated with how much tissue damage has occurred.
In short this statement is False
2. True or False: In patients with chronic pain the central nervous system becomes more sensitive to danger messages?
When you have nerves that are extra sensitive they send information to the spinal cord and then on to the brain so something can be done about it. This system is designed so the brain can interpret the messages from the nerves and determine what action needs to take place such as stopping movement of that area. When these messages continue to be sent from the nerves then the spinal cord and the brain become more sensitive to these messages and may start to interpret them as more intense pain.
Think about this analogy: A CEO of a company gets reports from each of his departments regarding how they are functioning. If the CEO is consistently getting reports from a department that is alarming, the CEO will start to pay closer attention to what is going on and also subsequent reports from his director. The brain and the spinal cord function the same way.
This statement is True
3. True or False: The body tells the brain when it is in pain?
The body is only capable of sending pain messages to the brain from special pain receptors. The brain then interprets the signals and determines whether the output should be pain.
A good example of this would be the following: A person crossing the street sprains an ankle and falls into the street. A bus is then noticed to be coming towards the person who has fallen. Because the danger of the bus is greater than the ankle sprain; the brain will likely not produce any pain in the foot because the oncoming bus is a greater threat. So this means that all pain is in the brain and that is exactly where it is supposed to be.
4. True or False: Chronic pain means that an injury hasn’t healed?
Many people have continued pain long after the injury has healed. We know that rate at which some tissues heal and this is fairly constant for most people though there are some variables that can slow or speed the process.
Look at the patient that was in a motor vehicle accident 6 months ago and is still having neck pain. They have had diagnostic testing that was negative and they have restored the neck motion to pre-injury levels but are still complaining of pain.
This is a common phenomenon and has to do with heightened sensitization of the nerves that is not related to tissue damage.
5. True or False: You can calm your nerve pain on your own without medication?
Of course you can. This is the whole point of physical therapists treating chronic pain. Here is a number of potential treatments though the list is certainly not exhaustive.
If you have further questions about chronic pain please don’t hesitate to contact us and let us be a reference in your journey to become pain free.
If you would like to know more or schedule an appointment with our Physical Therapy team call the number below.