If you live with an orthopedic condition that has caused you to experience continuous or intermittent nerve pain for an extended period of time, it has probably hurt your quality of life considerably. More than that, chronic nerve pain can have deleterious effects on your health that extend far beyond the pain and symptoms associated with the injury itself. To reinforce your general well-being, you’ve got to be strategic about the steps that you take to stay fit and healthy.

Understanding Nerve Pain and Caring for Your Condition

Chronic nerve pain originating from a herniated disc or other type of spinal cord injury is the result of nerve impingement. Your spine’s vertebrae are supposed to keep the nerves running into the spine stable and safe. A small deficiency in the support provided by the discs between vertebrae can cause the disc or the spine itself to push on the root of the nerve. Consequently, radicular pain may shoot down to other areas of the body including. Individuals with cervical issues typically feel this in their shoulders, arms, and hands. Lumbar problems usually cause pain or numbness to shoot down people’s thighs, legs, and even as far as their feet. 

Of course, this is the etiological cause of radicular pain, and targeting the area that’s causing the pain is the most direct way to treat it. Nevertheless, when traditional treatments such as physical therapy or surgical intervention have failed, you need be conscientious about the habits that are likely to exacerbate your pain. Some of your physical activity or lack of activity as well as dietary choices can worsen inflammation and pain levels.

Stay Engaged With Care Providers

You need a lot of patience and perseverance to cope with chronic nerve pain. It’s frustrating to put a lot of effort into your recovery and still not be able to get relief. Nevertheless, it’s important to stay engaged in treatment and be optimistic about what you can do to improve your condition and your quality of life. If you’ve seen more than a couple doctors but haven’t been able to generate much improvement, don’t give up on continuing to pursue treatment.

If you feel like you’re having a tough time communicating with doctors or you get the sense that you’re not getting the right caliber of care, don’t hesitate to find another orthopedist or neurologist to consult with. Meeting with a physiatrist may be a good alternative to a pain management center. Search your health insurance carrier’s network for a provider in your area who has extensive experience treating patients with conditions similar to your own. 

Be Consistent About Attending Physical Therapy

An intensive physical therapy is one of the most effective ways to treat spinal conditions and also recover after a surgical procedure. If you haven’t found physical therapy to offer much appreciable relief from your symptoms, don’t be quick to conclude that the work that you’re putting into it isn’t worth it. 

Many physical therapy patients get discouraged about not making progress because they make a significant time commitment and visit costs can be expensive. Moreover, it’s common to leave sessions feeling a little worse than you did before you went. 

Physical therapy can be taxing on an injury site, particularly supporting muscle groups. However, strengthening these muscle groups could play a key role in protecting spinal injuries from advancing and becoming more discomforting. When your spine hurts, the surrounding muscles and other soft tissues stiffen up to defend the spine. By keeping these muscles toned and strong, that contraction is less likely to lead to inflammation or aggravated nerve pain. 

Ultimately, any small thing that you can do to feel better and reinforce a neutral or positive outlook towards your recovery is well worth pursuing. Stay committed to supporting your health, and don’t let the ordeal of chronic nerve pain undermine the priority that you assign to taking care of yourself.