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Are you in pain?

Pain is universal. It is complex as well as unique. The degree of pain experienced and how you react to it are the results of your own biological, psychological, and cultural makeup.

100 questions & answers about chronic pain
Vladimir Maletic, Rakesh Jain, Charles L. Raison.
Sudbury, MA : Jones & Bartlett Learning, c2012.
Maletic (neuropsychiatry and behavioral science, U. of South Carolina, and psychiatry, Duke U.) et al. answer 100 questions sufferers and their families have about chronic pain. They provide background on pain and common disorders and discuss neurobiology, pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments, interventional and surgical procedures, and coping strategies, with definitions of medical terms in the margins of the text. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
     
Defeat chronic pain now! : groundbreaking strategies for eliminating the pain of arthritis, back and neck conditions, migraines, diabetic neuropathy, and chronic illness
Bradley S. Galer, Charles E. Argoff.
Beverly, MA : Fair Winds Press, 2010.
If you are one of the millions of people suffering from chronic pain, it can often seem as if your discomfort is running-and ruining-your life. Maybe you’ve even been told that “it’s all in your head” and you just have to endure the debilitating effects of migraines, arthritis, back and neck pain, and chronic illness. You can feel good again! Defeat Chronic Pain Now ! is your survival guide to preventing, reversing, and managing chronic pain. Referencing breakthrough medical research, two of the leading pain specialists in the field, Bradley S. Galer, M.D., and Charles E. Argoff, M.D., present hidden and little known causes of common chronic pain conditions, how to avoid misdiagnosis, and the latest treatments under development including: -Myofascial Dysfunction: The real (undiagnosed!) culprit in 90% of Back and Neck Pain -DMARDS and NSAIDS: Two breakthrough drugs that promise significant relief for Arthritis -Nutraceuticals: The natural wonder treatment for Peripheral Neuropathy -Focal heat trigger-point (FHTP) therapy: The new drug-free approach to Migraine relief The first practical book on integrative pain management, Defeat Chronic Pain Now ! gives you the latest information on surgical options, new medications, complementary therapies, and psychological interventions that can be used to rewire your body for pain relief. For each condition and procedure, you’ll learn what to expect in the hospital and the doctor's office, and what self-therapy solutions you can do on your own. Detailed illustrations and easy-to-understand descriptions help you select the best treatment options to improve your unique type of pain and take back your life.
     
Do fish feel pain?
Victoria Braithwaite.
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2010.
Each year millions of fish are caught on barbed hooks or left to die by suffocation on the decks of fishing boats. But while there has been increasing interest in recent years in the welfare of mammals, fish are thought to be too different--too dim-witted, too cold-blooded, too simple--to merit our concern. Here, biologist Victoria Braithwaite explores the question of fish pain and fish suffering, explaining what science can now tell us about fish behavior, and examining the related ethical questions about how we should treat these animals. Fish have in the past been portrayed as slow, cold automata with a very simple brain that generates stereotyped behavior. But Braithwaite presents new scientific evidence that seriously challenges this view. Indeed, there is a growing body of science demonstrating that fish are far smarter and more cognitively competent than we have previously suspected. Several fish species are surprisingly intelligent and research has shown that they can have both accurate and long lasting memories, which in some cases, such as migrating salmon, can span years. Moreover, the author demonstrates that fish have more in common with other vertebrates than we think. Their overall physiology, for instance, shares many similarities with other vertebrates--even ourselves. The way that they respond to stressful situations, the so-called "stress response," is strikingly similar. After experiencing a stressful event, our bodies release cortisol into the blood, and the same is true in fish. Victoria Braithwaite is one of the key scientists working on fish pain and she is also actively involved with both the fishing industry and the angling world, helping them sort through the implications of these findings. Though far from anti-fishing, she concludes that scientific evidence suggests that we should widen to fish the protection currently given to birds and animals.
     
The complete idiot's guide to pain relief
by Alpana Gowda and Karen K. Brees.
New York : Alpha, c2010.
Practical help for the millions who suffer. The Complete Idiot's Guide(r) to Pain Relief offers readers advice on how to live with, manage, and treat their specific symptoms as they occur, and get quick and lasting relief from their discomfort through both traditional medical and alternative therapies. bull; bull;Includes the major sources of pain from head and back aches to chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia. bull;Clear and accessible information from a certified medical expert. bull;Covers the impact of diet and exercise on pain relief. bull;According to the National Institute of Health, over seventy-six million Americans suffer from sustained pain every day.  
     
Stop pain : inflammation relief for an active life
Vijay Vad, with Peter Occhiogrosso.
Carlsbad, Calif. : Hay House, c2010.
Do you feel trapped by chronic pain? Do you avoid going places and doing things you once loved, because getting there simply hurts too much? If you are one of the estimated 50 million people who suffer with chronic pain, you know the impact it has on your life. But now, with advances in our understanding of pain, relief is possible with self-care options that will minimize your dependence on narcotics or medical procedures. InStop Pain,Vijay Vad, M.D.,teaches you the ins and outs of pain-bringing to light the links between inflammation and other factors that increase pain. Covering everything from stress relief techniques to an anti-inflammatory diet, Dr. Vad shows you the thingsyoucan do to alleviate pain. Dr. Vad lays out concrete strategies for dealing with the most common pain problems. He then addresses the possible risks and rewards of various treatments for other types of chronic pain. His analysis of conventional and complementary options-including everything from prescription medications and surgical intervention to physical therapy, acupuncture, and breathing exercises-will open your eyes to the many ways you can take back control of your life.
     

For persistent pain, called chronic pain, medication alone may not be the best form of treatment. Instead, a comprehensive approach that includes exercise, relaxation skills, and behavioral changes can help to control the pain. These usually can be practiced without the risk of serious side effects.

Pain can be classified as "acute" or "chronic." Acute pain lasts a short time and should end soon.  Chronic pain lasts beyond the healing of an injury and continues for several months.

Struggling with chronic pain can be especially difficult for someone who is used to being in control. This type of person must first admit to being in pain, and then learn to adjust life goals. It is important to not compare current activities to how things used to be. Instead, learn to adjust and enjoy life as it is now.

Pain medication taken regularly may actually make the pain worse instead of better. This is called rebound pain. Any type of pain reliever may cause rebound pain. When medication wears off, the pain can return with a vengeance. A cycle of taking more pain medication, and severe pain, can be never ending. A physician can provide alternatives.

Living with chronic pain makes it uncomfortable to get a good night's sleep. In order to attempt getting to sleep better, try to:

  • Establish regular sleep hours.
  • Don't "try" to sleep, instead read or watch television.
  • Limit bedroom activities.
  • Avoid or limit caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine.
  • Minimize interruptions.
  • Schedule a "worry time."
  • Check your medications to see with your doctor if they contribute to your difficulty in sleeping.
  • Don't substitute a nap for a full night's sleep.

Those living with chronic pain need to learn new skills, have a positive attitude, and give themselves realistic expectations. To gain a better understanding of what can be done to manage chronic pain, many join a support group. Here coping techniques may be shared with others who live daily with chronic pain.

More about pain

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff