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Pain is a symptom in which the person feels an uneasiness or discomfort. This feeling is triggered in the nervous system, the nerves detect damage to the tissues and transmit to the brain via spinal cord.
Pain can be acute or chronic.
Acute pain is caused by injury, surgery, illness, trauma or painful medical procedures. It serves as a warning of disease or a threat to the body. It generally lasts for a short period of time, and usually disappears when the underlying cause has been treated or has healed.
Pain may go on for weeks, months or even years. This is called chronic pain. Sometimes chronic pain is due to an ongoing cause, such as cancer or arthritis, postsurgical pain, post-trauma pain, neurogenic pain (pain caused by nerve damage), psychogenic pain (pain that isn’t caused by disease, injury or nerve). Many a times the cause is unknown and is very specific.
- Old age (Older people are more prone to having health conditions that might lead to pain)
- Certain health conditions such as cancer, arthritis, depression, anxiety, fibromyalgia (it is syndrome that affects muscles and soft tissues causing pain)
- Sedentary lifestyle (not exercising regularly and not maintaining a healthy diet)
- Low immunity
The person may feel pain in the affected area of the body, such as your back, abdomen, chest, or pelvis.
Pain can be helpful in diagnosing a problem. Without pain, you might hurt yourself. In the absence of pain, you may also not realize about the underlying problems in the body. Following are the signs and symptoms that occur along with pain:
- moaning and groaning
- resistance to care
- reduced social interactions
- increased wandering
- not eating
- sleeping problems
Diagnosing the source of a pain can often depend on the patient's own descriptions. There are scales to help identify a likely underlying cause.
- the character of all pains felt by the patient, such as burning, stinging, or stabbing
- the site, quality, and radiation of pain, or where the pain is felt, what it feels like, and how far it feels like it spreads
- what factors aggravate and relieve the pain
- when the pain occurs throughout the day
- the impact on the person's daily function and mood
- the person's understanding of their pain
Fortunately, there are many ways to treat pain. Treatment varies depending on the cause of pain.
- Medications include analgesics (Pain relievers)
- Alternative therapy such as acupuncture
When to consult a doctor?
Sharp and continuous pain is an alarming sign to get admitted in emergency and treated by a doctor.