Lifestyle & Habits

Salad
You may have noticed that at any given moment your pain levels can fluctuate based on many different variables, including the weather, how much sleep you got the night before, and whether or not you are having a stressful day. But you may not have given much thought to the role that bacteria might be playing in how you feel.  
No Sleep
Difficulty sleeping is a common source of frustration that I often hear from patients. While pain often causes insomnia, studies suggest that the reverse may be true as well – not enough sleep can lead to more pain. In fact, some researchers now believe that a good night’s rest can serve as a powerful pain reliever.  
Doctor writing report
Are you feeling frustrated every time you see your doctor? Like you aren’t being heard and not getting the help you need? My guess is that if you are feeling disappointed with your visits with your pain doctor, you probably aren’t alone.  
Cardio Running on a Treadmill
It can feel like a Catch-22: Everyone is telling you need to exercise, but when you’re in pain, exercising may be the last thing you feel like doing. And unfortunately, the longer you avoid doing it, the harder it can be to get started. Muscles and tendons get weak, stiff, and sore when they aren’t being used, so there can be significant aches and pains when you decide to start moving again. But finding the right exercise program can be an...
If you’ve seen the regular stream of stories in the media about the “opioid epidemic,” the thought of starting an opioid pain medication might make you a little uneasy. But if you are scheduled for an elective surgery, dental work, or experience an acute injury, your doctor is likely to prescribe one – an estimated 1 out of every 5 patients with non-cancer pain are prescribed opioids by their doctors. So how can you make sure you don’t turn...
As a pain specialist, I’ve learned that one of the most powerful things I can do when I meet a new patient is to provide a sense of validation. Many of my chronic pain patients show up for their first appointment feeling misunderstood, frowned upon, or just not taken seriously. Most feel isolated – on an island with no one else to understand or appreciate what they are going through.  
Pain management is an important consideration when you’re having surgery – not only to minimize discomfort, but also because go
If you live with chronic pain, one of the most important things you can do for yourself is to learn how to manage pain flare-ups. A pain flare-up is a substantial increase in the intensity of an underlying chronic pain problem. While the change in pain level can be dramatic, it is not a new pain, but rather a significant exacerbation of a pain problem that already exists.

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