September is Pain Awareness Month. Omron wants to help get the word out so those living with chronic pain know that technology, research, understanding and pain management techniques are at the forefront of public awareness. Ask a friend or family member how their pain is this month.
Nearly 100 million Americans experience acute pain, that’s more than those who have diabetes, heart disease and cancer combined. September has been declared Pain Awareness Month, a month in which various health organizations come together to raise public awareness about pain and pain management.
Back in 2001, the American Chronic Pain Association established a Pain Awareness Campaign with the key element of making September a month for organizations with similar health missions to promote the word on pain and pain management—including recognizing pain more readily, understanding pain disorders and dropping the traditional stigma attached to pain, as well as managing it more effectively.
It was then that the pain was adopted as the “fifth vital sign,” increasing the legitimacy of pain as not just a symptom but an obstacle to quality of life.
Since pain is often a warning sign that indicates a problem, pain starts in receptor nerves that live beneath the skin and in organs of the body. Scientists have recently discovered a protein that may turn off pain receptors. Great news for so many.
Positive thinking may also play a role in pain. Researchers have found a link between a negative attitude about pain and poor sleep and worsening of pain among patients with temporomandibular disorder, or TMD, serious facial and jaw pain.
Many innovations are happening in the field of pain management, including the awareness of mental attitude, how stress plays a role in pain, and the latest physical treatments like using radiofrequency to burn away scar tissue.
Pain specialists and pain clinics work tirelessly to help pain patients manage and control pain with the latest technologies available.
So, what can you do to celebrate Pain Awareness Month and participate in getting the word out? A lot. If you or someone you care about experiences pain, you have a role in this fight. Ask them today how their pain is lately.
Here’s how you can help:
- People who suffer with pain need support from those who understand.
- Recognize that pain disorders come with emotions other diseases may not, including anger, sadness and hopelessness since being in pain is hard both mentally and physically.
- Pain isn’t all in the head.
- Relaxation and stress relief play important roles in pain management.
- Staying active, as best as possible, can help by keeping the body strong and flexible.
- Chronic pain involves the entire family, not just the sufferer.
- Talking about pain and pain disorders with friends, families and physicians may help reduce feelings of isolation.
To learn more about Pain Awareness Month go to http://www.painawarenessmonth.org/