For a person who sufferers from chronic pain, trying to explain it to a friend, family member, or medical professional is often very difficult. Because the person can appear entirely normal to onlookers, the severity of the pain is often underestimated. As a result of the vast number of patients now coming forward and expressing concerns and heartache related to their unseen pain, medical professionals have devised a plan to help these people better express what they are feeling.
It is suggested that the most effective way to make another person understand what you are feeling is through comparison. Try to associate what you feel with discomfort that the other person has experienced in the past – broken bones, sprains, strains, labor, toothache, etcetera. Continue to discuss this with another person until he or she begins to see the patterns that you feel.
- When do you feel the worst?
- What makes you feel better?
- What activities do you feel that you should avoid in order to keep the pain at a minimum?
The answers to these questions can help your loved one better understand you, but can also make a tremendous difference in how you are treated by members of the medical community. More questions to consider are:
- How long can you stand?
- Do you have trouble lifting things that used to be easy to handle?
- Are your relationships suffering?
- Can you travel without excessive discomfort?
- Do you have difficulty sleeping?
The more specific you can be about what you feel, how often it is there, and how a good day differs from a bad day, the better other people will be able to understand you. Understanding leads to compassion. To learn more about how we use effective communication when managing pain at Interventional Pain Associates, visit us.
For more information, keep reading at www.painfoundation.org