The Surprising Impacts of Chronic Pain to Our Body
Canadian Pain Task Force report shows that there are about one in every five Canadians lives in chronic pain. When this pain persists it can affect one’s daily life.
We all have once gone through some periods in our life when our body has to face chronic pain, the pain that lasts for more than 3 months. Normally pain is a normal thing that signals that something is unusual and needs to cure. However, when this pain persists for a long time. It paves the way for many other issues in the body. The article aims at disclosing the effects of chronic pain on our body.
The Effects of Chronic Pain to Our Body
Affecting your mood
Anyone going through chronic pain is more susceptible to emotional changes some studies show that 4% more than the normal person without any pain. Chronic pain can result in depression, anxiety, and fear of some dangerous diseases. Such people become dependent on pain-relieving medications. The more hopeless they become, the more they take pain-relieving medicines that cure the pain for some time. Afterwards, when pain reveals itself again, such people become more hopeless and ultimately aggressive.
Living with continuous pain brings about a negative impact on the brain and also disturbs the hormones and neurochemicals in the brain which may lead to many hormonal issues and the cycle of stress worsen the hormonal health of the body. It results in depression, lowered self-esteem, and hatred towards life because such a person wants to get off pain at all costs.
Impact on sleep
Not only does chronic pain result in depression and stress issue but ultimately lead to changes in sleep pattern and may result in insomnia it becomes very difficult for the patient to have a straight and sound sleep of 7 to 8 hours.
A study has shown that people with 50-89% of people with chronic pain face the problem of impaired sleep patterns. Chronic pain makes it difficult to sleep peacefully.
Impact on memory
According to a study by the University of Alberta, pain not only disturbs the physical, emotional, and mental states of the patient but also has a bad impact on memory and concentration. It affects the centers responsible for memory storage and processing of information for further use. This not only disturbs the memory but also result in dis-functioning.
Leading to Deconditioning
Deconditioning is the loss of functioning due to chronic pain. This happens when due to being on long-term rest, the muscles become inactive and ultimately start weakening. This renders the body unfit because of the loss of physical activity and proper exercise which is the basic requirement of the body to stay healthy and fit. Deconditioning further increases the pain by the weakening of muscles.
Being in constant pain results in muscle atrophy, neuropathies and contractures make it difficult to move and relax. When a part of the body does not function, other parts function to compensate for the loss of functioning of one part which results in overwork on the compensating parts and ultimately leads those parts or organs to degeneration due to overuse. The compensating organs may pain more than the chronic pain of the original pain.
It is a well-known fact that living with chronic pain affects an individual’s very own associations with family and friends. The inclination to be less patient while in agony can restrict one’s capacity to cooperate and understand others. This can affect the social life of the person and the person would like to stay at home rather than getting engaged in social activities. It can likewise meddle with sexual relationships, family, parenting, and relation with others.
Impact on Cardiovascular health
The patients of chronic pain are more exposed to cardiovascular diseases due to stress and depression issues. It leads to hypertension caused by the rise in blood pressure in the blood vessels. Studies have shown an overlap in the pathways of pain and the cardiovascular system. Due to the pain, the pathway gets altered. Baroreflex is a mechanism that is involved in controlling blood pressure has also been seen as an important factor in normalizing pain. It decreases pain and does not allow it to get chronic.
Chronic pain results in the malfunctioning of the Baroreflex mechanism and so this increases blood pressure. Hypertension means there is stress on the body during the flow of blood and hypertension is the leading cause of several other diseases like heart attack, stroke, angina, etc.
Affects your weight
Hormonal disturbances also disturb the normal weight of the body and result in weight loss. This also happens because the body is usually in-active during chronic pain and so reduced muscle activity result in less burning of calories and hence the accumulation of fats in the body. An overweight body puts more pressure on the joints even for minor movement and hence joints start paining which further has an impact on mobility. Being overweight also affects the other organs of the body like the lungs, heart, kidney, etc.
Hormonal and chemical effects
Chronic pain disturbs the endocrine system which is responsible for the release of hormones from different parts of the body. Hormones regulate metabolism and carry out a lot of functions in the body. Disturbance in the endocrine has further worse impacts on the body.
What You Can Do
Living with chronic pain is really a constant struggle as one has to fight with not only the pain but also the negative impacts it has on the body. Trying to cope with all the issues simultaneously seems very difficult but with help of family, companions, and the proper medical treatment, a ray of hope can be induced in the patients which ultimately would lead to proper health and life without pain.
If you are going through this condition you may ask for the help of a health professional especially in treating your irregular sleep patterns. Also, they can help you engage in activities to keep the muscles active. You can also look for moral support from the people closest to you, your family, your partner, and your peers.
It’s essential that your condition has been checked and assessed thoroughly. At Evergreen Rehab and Wellness, we can help you with your chronic pain. We have registered Physiotherapists, Chiropractor, Kinesiologist, Massage Therapist and Clinical Counsellor.
You may book for our services online by clicking the link here.