As you grow older, you start experiencing pains and ache in different parts of the body. However, such issues can be chronic for some, especially people who have crossed the age of 65. Everyone knows that chronic pains for an aging person are a lifelong problem.
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association says that “…between 25% and 50% of community-dwelling elderly have important pain problems…Geriatric nursing home residents have an even higher prevalence of pain…between 45% and 80%.” Such pains can be due to –
- joint disorders
- other chronic problems
Chronic pain mostly remains untreated and this causes great problems. Aged people believe that pains are natural with aging and so, they do not seek any treatment for them. They feel that nothing can give relief from such pains. Now, going without treatment affects quality of one’s life and imposes serious problems over mental and physical health. This can result in many things like –
- Sleep problems
Elderly people also lack in understanding pain management and they fear medication because of adverse impact on their health.
How to assess pains in aged people?
Chronic pain in older people can be treated only when you can assess their discomfort level. The 0-10 pain scale is a good way to measure intensity of pain. “0” here implies “no pain” and “10” means “worst pain possible”. This rating helps doctors to have a comprehensive assessment of the pain, its nature, severity and the way it might change with time.
Methods of Pain Management
One common treatment of chronic pain is through prescribed medication. However, you should remember that aged patients metabolize medicines in a different way because of changes in blood flow, liver functioning and kidney condition. Hence, it is essential to identify real cause of the pain. For instance, nociceptive pain is related to stimulation of nerve cells due to illness or injury. Again, neuropathic pain occurs due to nerve injury.
Each pain is treated differently. Thus, what is effective for one pain might be ineffective for another. Musculoskeletal pain is treated by anti-inflammatory and non-opioid analgesic medications which include naproxen (Aleve), acetaminophen (Tylenol), aspirin and ibuprofen (Advil). Opioid analgesics should be carefully employed under the close supervision of an expert physician.
Pain Management beside Prescribed Medication
There are other alternatives of treating pain asides prescribed medications. Some physicians recommend these methods together with medication.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This is psychological intervention which may alter and reduce the reaction towards pain.
- Massage Therapy
Massaging might help in relaxing the muscles in the affected area.
- Cold Laser Therapy
With the help of this therapy, damaged tissue is stimulated and pain is reduced and healed.
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation(TENS)
This method uses electrical impulse for stimulating the nerves and give relief from pain.
- Physical Therapy
This therapy includes yoga, walking, stretching or weight training. Exercise also helps a lot in ailing pain. In other words, old people have to be physically active to be healthy and promote overall body functioning.
Are you worried about chronic pain in your near and dear ones or yourself? Do not leave it without any treatment! Immediately get in touch with a doctor and go for proper treatment to reduce and manage the pain. Book an appointment at https://jbchrpl.com/.