September is Pain Awareness Month – when we raise public awareness about the chronic pain nearly 100 million Americans experience and ways to effectively manage it.
Everyone has acute pain from time to time, typically coming from an injury, like cutting a finger or pulling a muscle; usually the pain goes away within 30 days or once the injury heals. Chronic pain, on the other hand, persists or progresses; your body keeps hurting for weeks, months or even years.
If you have arthritis, you may experience chronic pain.
Not All Pain is Created Equal
There are more than 100 types of arthritis and related diseases, and not all arthritis pain is alike. It can originate in different areas of the musculoskeletal system, triggering chemical and electrical signals that travel from the affected area and alert your brain that you’re hurt. From there, things get personal. Everyone’s threshold and tolerance for pain is unique.
Coping with ongoing pain can be the hardest part of living with a joint disease. It can disrupt every part of your life – and many parts of your life can also affect your pain.
- As many as 75 percent of those 65 and older report persistent pain from arthritis and other chronic conditions.
- Almost four out of five older adults have multiple chronic conditions besides arthritis, like diabetes, heart disease and obesity. And the combination can heighten pain and discomfort.
- Women are more likely to develop chronic pain and often feel pain more intensely than men.
Our Breaking the Pain Chain toolkit, sponsored by Biofreeze, will help you understand the physical and lifestyle factors that might contribute to your pain, like stress and fatigue. You’ll get practical tips on making a personal pain management plan that lets you take control, including things like getting better sleep, adjusting your diet and exercising.
Throughout September, help bring attention to the chronic pain and suffering arthritis frequently causes. Let family and friends know it’s Pain Awareness Month – and ask them to help spread the word about how important it is to find more effective treatments and a cure for arthritis. Donations to the Arthritis Foundation go to work towards scientific research and all the support we provide.
Most of all, take care of yourself. Our Breaking the Pain Chain toolkit will guide you in pain management and help you live a fuller, less painful life. You deserve it.
- Breaking the Pain Chain Toolkit
- Pain Management on Arthritis.org
- Weather and Arthritis Pain
- Easy Meditation Options for Pain