Updated: Dec 15, 2020
Chronic pain affects millions of Americans. According to the new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “Nearly 20 million Americans are suffering from chronic pain that interferes with their daily activities. In 2016 National Health and CDS Interview Survey found that 1 in 5 Americans, or about 50 million people, suffer from chronic pain. Of those, 8%, or about 19.6 million, suffer from pain that interferes with their daily lives.”
What is pain? Merskey’s classic definition of pain modified by the International Association for Study of Pain (IASP) states that pain is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage. Note: “Pain is always subjective. Each individual learns the application of the word through experience related to injury in early life.”
Pain may seem a simple event, but we who experience it are complex beings. We have divided our lives into many categories. Consequently, it is difficult to explain a phenomenon that does not honor the artificial barriers we have drawn between one part of our life and the others. A far more simple explanation is that life itself is multidimensional. These distinctions between our body, intellect, emotions, and consciousness are the only made to explain these phenomena to our mind, which likes to divide things up into neat components. In reality, the connection between our body, mind and soul, our physical, mental and conscious aspects are so intimate and dynamically interconnected that it is absurd to think we can experience something as primal as pain without it crossing all the three dimensions in our lives.
How to manage chronic pain?
Pain when chronic is often resistant to simple treatment alternatives. For those reasons chronic pain can lead to depression. Common medical approaches, medication and even surgery are not always a solution and in fact, sometimes can cause worsening with dependences and further loss of function. As James Gruft, MD points out, “To treat chronic pain as an exclusive physical entity is to treat it incompletely.”
According to Dr. Gruft, pain specialist explains, understanding and accepting pain is the most important step. It requires knowledge, courage and persistence. Choosing the correct approach to deal with the pain and moving toward wellness is the second. His approach for treating chronic pain over 20 years has helped many patients to cope with pain and achieve wellness.
How do you measure pain?
Pain is multidimensional, understanding pain and when it needs healing by dissecting it into physical, emotional, mental and consciousness. A comprehensive pain treatment is effective in healing the pain as these four variables are dependent on each other in the process of wellness.