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How Do I Choose the Best Pain Management Options?

Article Details
  • Written By: M. Kayo
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 03 March 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2019
    Conjecture Corporation
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Choosing from the best pain management options is critical especially for those suffering from long term or chronic pain. Since pain levels and symptoms are different for each individual, the type of pain management must be specifically tailored to each individual. With your doctor, make a complete evaluation of the pain management options and treatments available to you before making a final selection. After that initial consultation, get a referral to a pain management specialist if needed. Since there is more to pain than just the physical aspect, pain management options will also likely include other professionals to help manage all problems associated with pain.

One of the first things to do when considering pain management options is to educate yourself about your state of your health and the types of medication and treatment available to you. If your own efforts at managing pain are not working, it may be time to seek professional help. Start the process by scheduling an appointment with your primary care physician. In order to find the best ways to manage pain or to eliminate it completely, discuss all available pain management options and treatments with your doctor and ask questions until you fully understand your choices. In some cases, medication may not be the best or only choice among all available pain management options.

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As part of an overall approach to managing pain, your doctor may refer you to an experienced pain consultant, or algiatrist, who may have a better understanding of your particular situation. Other doctors that often have experience treating pain include neurologists, anesthesiologists, neurosurgeons, and physiatrists. Working closely with your primary care physician, a pain specialist should be able to make an accurate assessment of your pain situation and prescribe the appropriate treatment. Look for a pain specialist who listens well, has a compassionate disposition, and encourages you to ask questions. Ultimately, you will have to trust that your pain specialist knows what is best for you regarding available pain management options.

Pain will likely have a direct effect upon your physical health and psychological well-being, so it is important to have pain management options that address each of these. Diminishment of quality of life can occur due to conditions that sometimes accompany pain, such as loss of function, loss of money, or loss of a job. The best pain management options include treatment for pain as well as emotional support and physical therapy if needed. This may require the services of more than one single specialist. For example, a counselor may help you cope with depression, a physical therapist may assist in restoring physical functionality, and a primary physician may prescribe and manage medication.

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