How to Cope with Chronic Pain

chronic painPhoto by Raj Eiamworakul on Unsplash

Have you heard of the “Don’t Push Pain” movement? It is a group of patients who are not able to get the medication they need to cope with their chronic pain and are tired of suffering in silence. They rallied on the steps of the Capitol building in mid-September 2018. There are multiple aspects of the opioid epidemic. There are those who, like the example mentioned above, do not feel they are getting the medication they need. Another group of people are the individuals who became addicted to medication designed to help their chronic pain, suffered terribly, and eventually got help through opiate rehab.

No matter your opinion on the opioid epidemic, the truth is that many individuals out there are suffering with chronic pain. While medication has proven to be helpful for some individuals, other therapies or at-home treatments have also proven to be helpful. Here are some techniques you can use to cope with chronic pain.

One of the first things that a person can do when they are experiencing chronic pain is to keep a journal. They want to write down how much pain they experience each day. They can use a 1 to 10 scale in order to judge how much pain they feel. It is a good idea to write down other things in the journal that relate to their pain and their overall health. They could include things like how much exercise they get, the foods they eat, how much stress they experience, and other information. First, this journal may help a person to get a clearer view of why they experience pain. Second, it is helpful when visiting a doctor. The doctor will be able to see in writing how much pain you experience each day as well as learn about your overall lifestyle.

Try to get more exercise. While engaging in physical activity can be challenging for individuals who suffer with chronic pain, it is not helpful to be inactive. The idea is to find some type of physical activity that you can engage in comfortably. It may be as simple as going for a slow-paced walk every evening. Or it could be visiting a local pool a couple of times a week and getting low impact exercise. There are multiple reasons why getting regular exercise can help you to cope with chronic pain. First, chronic pain can often lead to a person gaining weight. This puts extra physical pressure on their body and can lead to emotional distress. Getting regular exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight. Second, exercise is good for your muscles and joints, which are often affected by chronic pain. Third, exercise encourages your brain to release endorphins. Endorphins are natural painkillers. This is especially helpful for individuals who are fighting against opiate addiction.

Try to find ways to reduce stress in your life. When a person experiences high levels of stress, this can actually make their body more sensitive to pain. The first step that you should take is to eliminate things in your life that cause you stress. Perhaps it is time to quit your job and find something else. Perhaps it is good idea to cut off a relationship with someone who only brings negativity to your life. The next step is to create an environment where you can better deal with the stress that you can’t eliminate. Use soothing music, calming colors, or even aromatherapy to create a welcoming environment in your home or office.

Many have found that deep breathing exercises can help them manage their chronic pain. This is especially true if the reason why they have chronic pain has to do with their muscles. Deep breathing exercises will relax your muscles and allow your muscles to release the pain that you are experiencing.

It is important to work closely with your doctor when managing chronic pain. Your doctor will help you to determine if medication is the right option for you. They can also tell you about other therapies that can be used to treat your specific type of chronic pain. Many have found that acupuncture and alternative treatments have helped them eliminate their pain or at least minimize it.

It is estimated that one in five individuals in the United States has chronic pain. The techniques that are mentioned above have been able to help many of these individuals minimize their pain and get it under control.

Medical Training to Assist Local People Who Have Fallen, Experienced Accidents or Become Ill

healthcarePhoto by Stefan Schranz @Pixabay

If you’ve ever had the desire to help people and wondered how you can apply that as a career, then you should strongly consider training for the medical field. There are many ways that you can assist people in your local community who have fallen in the street and hurt themselves, been involved in a car accident or become seriously ill. It all starts with deciding that healthcare is an interesting field to enter and choosing a career path within the healthcare profession that suits you best.

Although attending classes on campus is certainly one option, the advent of online study courses to complete a degree opens the door to students who require flexible study hours. Not needing to transit to and from a college by taking advantage of online medical-related degree courses from this school helps students enter the healthcare field sooner than they might have previously thought possible. Their accessible campus is in Clearwater, Florida should you have questions that you wish to ask in-person.

Let’s look at the career options available when studying for a medical-related associate degree.

Working in Health and Human Services

An associate degree in Health and Human Services puts you front and center working in the local community. An entry-level posting as a community coordinator, an outreach specialist, or a social services assistant are just some of the possible roles. It really helps if you’re the type of person who gets along well with almost everybody and puts people at ease easily. This is a growing field that is expected to expand by 16 percent through to 2026, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The excellent work that Walk San Francisco has been doing to raise awareness about the need for safer walking areas in the city to avoid accidents speaks to good community relations and the safety of local people on public walkways and when crossing the street. In this way, healthcare professions can play a diverse set of roles affecting not only patients but the people working tirelessly to make improvements to the life of others living nearby.

Other possible roles within Health and Human Services includes veteran outreach to see how the healthcare profession can better assist our respected veterans. Both child care and elder care programs, along with mental health care facilities, are other specialized areas that are open to workers with this specialty.

Getting Technical with Technology

If you’re good with computers, software and figuring out complicated things that baffle other people, then qualifying as a Health Information Technician is going to be right up your alley. The role has a median pay of approximately $39,000 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The most important responsibility in this kind of role is to keep the electronic health record (EHR) current and accurate. This is the patients’ electronic records that doctors and nurses rely upon to examine their history, make a diagnosis, prescribe medication or medical procedures, and monitor the progress of the patient through the course of their treatment.

Due to the HIPAA regulations governing how patient information is to be collected, accessed and stored, the role often includes topics like data security, privacy, maintaining confidential records and other important subjects. The healthcare organization has overall responsibility for keeping patient records private and often even uses encrypted pagers to message personnel about urgent matters to ensure patient information is not disseminated.

The course should be CAHIIM-accredited. This provides for a course review progress to validate that it covers necessary subjects and meets or betters the standards as set by the American Health Information Management Association.

Healthcare Management for Problem Solvers

The Healthcare Management Associate degree provides analytical thinkers and superb multi-taskers with the tools to be an effective supervisor or specialist. Whether working as a medical billing supervisor ensuring the bills are for the correct amount and go out to the right person or organization, a front desk supervisor to deal with arrivals or disputes as they arise, or an office supervisory role, they all have their challenges and applicability in a healthcare organization.

A career in healthcare management suits a person who likes thinking on their feet, is methodical and organized, and can manage other people well. Being a people person, to an extent, is useful but you don’t need to be the life of the party. You steer the ship, reduce administrative mistakes and smooth out disputes when they arise. You’re the dependable one. Can you handle that?

Preparing Medications as a Pharmacy Technician

The Pharmacy Technician must complete their training to qualify for this demanding job. In this instance, there isn’t an associate degree to complete, but a full training program instead. Students also have the option whether to take the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE), which some healthcare facilities/states count as a prerequisite to employment in this type of work. This is because, not only must medications be correctly selected and dosage numbers accurately calculated, but insurance claims are part of the responsibility in this role too.

Patients must receive the correct medication in the appropriate dosage as prescribed by their attending doctor. With medicine, it’s black and white. It’s either correct or it’s not. Mistakes can be costly, so the Pharmacy Technician must be someone who’s trained to always have a high attention to detail. There’s no margin for error here. If you choose this option, then jobs include working in a retail store that has a mini-pharmacy, a full-time position in a pharmacy, a long-term care facility or in a hospital.

As you can no doubt tell, not every job in a healthcare facility is that of a doctor or a nurse. There are many different positions that must be filled by professional, knowledgeable employees who can complete their assignments and fulfill their responsibilities successfully and consistently. Choosing the right career path for you within the healthcare industry is probably the hardest part. For that, you must go with your gut and what naturally interests you.