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The Chinese Medicine Sampler & Online Diagnosis - Pain

Pain - Main page

Pain - Increeasing Your Tolerance






Isn't it remarkable how much territory a single four letter word can rule? Chronic pain, acute pain, dull pain, acy pain, sharp pain, throbbing pain, burning pain, pounding pain, pain from trauma - hammer on thumb to pain from severe injury at work or a motor vehicle accident, post-op pain, nuisance pain, debilitating pain, disabling pain. I can go on but I'll save it for the Oriental Medicine diagnostic categories of pain.

Pain is extremely costly to a society. In the workplace, production decreases, work quality suffers because of a worker distracted by pain, employees cost more to insure. Many people become disabled which can mean financial disaster. Chronic pain is much more common than we may notice in day to day life. Most people rarely admit to having the pain or just how severe the pain is. These numbers may surprise you.

60 to 70 million Americans have chronic pain.

90% of Americans with chronic pain work while in pain.

The Breadth and Depth of Pain's Effects

Pain has a wide variety of ways it interferes with our ability to function in life. Few things disrupt life as dramatically and as much as pain. Pain can truly stop us in our tracks and keep us from moving on. The more pain interferes, the smaller the scope of life. For many with chronic pain, life is existence and little else. The list below is composed of well-documented secondary effects of chronic pain.

Direct Negative Effects & Negative Social Consequences
Impaired physical functioning
Reduced ability to perform activities of daily living
Decreased work performance
Friction with co-workers
Decreased ability to think clearly and well
Pain often leads to depression, anxiety, and irritability
Negative evaluation by self and sometimes by others.
Friction and/or distance in marital and family relationships
Decreased intimacy in family relationships
Decreased or loss of sexual intimacy
Change or loss of social roles
Strained or lost friendships

All Too Often...

Left unaddressed, each of these issues can result in severe consequences for the patient and loved ones. Several things prevent patients from avoiding the pitfalls of life with pain. Perhaps the most problematic is the widespread belief that one should not let pain "get in the way", that pain can be dealt with by pure force of will. This is true for some levels of pain severity but it requires much more physical and mental energy than life without pain.

Ironically, for the many people in the middle ground of pain severity there are many ways to ease the struggle.



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