Body and mind: Tips to counteract pain’s psychological impact

Across the U.S., pain is the leading reason individuals seek medical care. While acute conditions can be corrected with treatment or surgical procedures, more than often painful medical conditions can last months or even a lifetime – this is commonly classified as chronic pain. If left untreated or not managed properly, this long-term uncomfortable physical sensation of pain can strain the body and most notably significantly impact one’s mental health. 


The fight against pain is not simply physical, there is critical need to address and counteract the mental toll of patients’ conditions. 

Those living with chronic pain know, it can be all-consuming. Pain can derail entire days or even weeks. It can disrupt work commitments, create resentment among families and prevent one from taking full advantage of joyful pleasures. This all too common pattern is vastly detrimental for an individual’s mental health, especially over long periods of time. 


Further so, often a patient’s pursuit of preventing or healing the physical condition at the root of pain can prevent patients from taking care of their mental state. By neglecting to address the psychological effects of their chronic pain patients can find themselves in challenging mental health conditions, even once their pain has been addressed medically. 


Clinical studies have shown nearly 85% of people who suffered from chronic pain reported feeling depressed.


Our Jacksonville, FL expert pain management team knows just how difficult it can be when you’re living with daily aches and pains. As discussed, chronic pain can hurt more than just your body. If you’re not living the life you want, you can change that life by changing your approach to your chronic pain problem, our team can help. Make an appointment today


Beyond seeking professionally-guided pain management therapies, what can patients do to improve or safeguard their mental wellbeing? Our pain care team worked up these expert tips. 


1.  Find Real Support  

No man or woman is an island. While physical pain and feelings of depression can make withdrawing from friends and family sound like the only choice, it can only make those feelings worse. Finding support, the right kind of support is essential. Others with similar circumstances or support groups can provide a valuable outlet for venting, getting words of encouragement, and even tips to overcome difficult seasons of life. 


2. Meditate 

Meditation uses different brain pathways to deal with pain from those used by other pain treatments. Studies have shown mixed results on the effectiveness of meditation for counteracting pain, however, in many cases it has been correlated with improved health and even a reduction in painful sensations. If you’re considering trying meditation to improve your mood there are many articles or apps that can help you get started. 


3. Set Realistic Goals for the Future

Small wins lead to big victories. Setting realistic, achievable goals is a great practice for anyone, but greatly beneficial for those fighting daily battles with painful conditions. Decide what you want to achieve today, tomorrow and next week or beyond. Write down the steps you need to realize your goals. You’ll enjoy a tremendous sense of accomplishment and self-worth as you progress toward your goal, which greatly boosts your mental wellbeing. 

4. Avoid Destructive Self-medication

A bad day or phase of life can often cause patients to turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms.  Keep alcohol use to a minimum and avoid other drugs. Many times those with painful conditions use alcohol and other drugs to “self-medicate” but in reality, alcohol and other drugs only aggravate problems. Medically-guided pain therapies are vastly more effective than destructive habits. 

5. Try A Free Resource – “Explain Your Pain”

Physician-guided resources and care can provide a bigg boost for understanding and overcoming pain. As a pain care leader in Jacksonville, FL, we recognize that and have worked to create a pain assessment resource for those experiencing pain. 


“Explain Your Pain,” is a free self-assessment for identifying, understanding and tracking chronic pain. 


This assessment guide is an easy-to-use tool to measure and track pain over time and even monitor the success of pain management therapies. Getting started is easy and can be done anywhere. Download your copy today! 


Once completed, you can bring this checklist with you to our office as a tool to assess your pain and work together to find relief.


Have questions on how to receive your copy of the “Explain Your Pain” guide? Are you experiencing pain and looking for additional guidance or resources? Omega Health & Wellness’ professional pain management team can is here to help. Call us at +1 904-724-5767. Our staff can help answer your questions, guide you to resources and even help schedule your appointment with us as soon as the next business day. 


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