Getting the Right Chronic Pain Treatment
Often, chronic pain is really more than just pain; it's a constellation of related symptoms and conditions. You might need treatment not only for the pain, but for the underlying cause. You might also need treatment for other problems that developed as a result of your pain -- sleep problems, depression, anxiety, or secondary pain.
"Treating chronic pain is not as simple as taking a single medication," Savage says. "It's more of an ongoing process." To control pain, it often takes a number of different experts working together. That could include your GP, a pain specialist, a physical therapist, a psychologist or psychiatrist, other specialists -- and you.
"The patient is really the most important member of the team," Savage says. While doctors can offer possible treatments for your chronic pain, only you can tell how well they're working.
"Patients who have the 'fix me, Doc' idea tend to do poorly," says Ferrante. Instead, you need to take an active role in your medical care. Be ready to talk about your chronic pain and how it affects you -- and be prepared to advocate for yourself, even in the face of doubt.
"You can't listen to the people who doubt the pain you're feeling," Ferrante tells WebMD. "You can't give in to their negativity. You must have faith in yourself and keep trying to get the right treatment."