They say that many of the beliefs about pain and pain relief are actually false! but that is far from the truth as many chronic pain sufferers know only to well.
‘No pain, no gain’, is a classic example of this myth that is said amongst athletes but in actual fact, there is no evidence to support the actual notion that you can build strength by pushing your muscles to work to the point of actual pain. However, resting and letting your muscles repair, although probably not very macho, is the sensible thing to do.
Another common myth ‘it’s all in my head‘, but the pain is a complex problem, involving both the mind and the body. Pain is an invisible problem that others can’t see, but that doesn’t mean it’s all in your head.
It may not always be possible to completely control your pain, but there are many techniques which can help you manage it better. So, the myth that ‘you just have to live with the pain’, is also just not true.
One classic myth is the ‘I’ll get addicted to the pain relief medicine‘. However, GP’s start your pain relief with a conservative approach by prescribing non-opioid pain-relief medicines which are in no way addictive. Physical dependence is not the same thing as addiction. And, physical dependence isn’t a problem as long as you do not stop taking the pain relief suddenly. Addiction is rarely a problem unless you have a history of drug or alcohol addiction.
‘You went to that event yesterday, so you can’t be in that much pain‘. Just because someone is in chronic pain doesn’t mean that they have the same amount of pain all the time. It’s quite possible to feel good enough one day to make it to that concert, and then the next day be in so much pain you can’t make it out of bed. It’s also possible to push through the pain long enough to go to that concert that you’ve always wanted to attend, knowing that you’ll pay for it later with even worse pain for days.
‘You look amazing so how can you be in pain’. This is a similar myth to number 5 and one that many people with #fibromyalgia (in particular) are told this. Why would you not want to look your best when you go out whether you are in pain or not and just because you have made an effort to look good does not mean you are lying about how you feel.
‘You can injure yourself further if you exercise when in pain’, This could not be further from the truth, as exercise such as physical therapy can be key to successful rehabilitation.
‘A pill can fix it‘. Pain Doctor says chronic pain is not the same thing as a headache. A simple headache is usually easily addressed with a tall glass of water and a few ibuprofen. Chronic pain is not as easily fixed. A few aspirin or even a handful of ibuprofen may not even touch the edges of a painful flare-up, and evidence is mounting that even prescription opioids are not effective.
‘Chronic pain is forever‘, Pain Doctor also comments that although chronic pain is called “chronic” for a reason, it is not an incurable disease. If a chronic pain patient has been in pain for years, it is unlikely that a doctor will be able to fix it in just a few visits, but with persistence and teamwork, it may be possible to diminish or even eliminate chronic pain over time.
Im sure there are lots more myths about pain, do you know any?