Chronic pain is the second-most common reason people see a doctor and miss work. Experiencing pain is a normal protective response designed to prevent us from engaging in movements or activities that may be dangerous.
Pain persisting longer than 3 months has turned what was once an adaptive response to something maladaptive. Your pain has suddenly become chronic and it is no longer protective, nor informative. So, what is chronic pain and what can you do about it if you suffer with it?
More than one-third of people with chronic pain become disabled by their pain to some degree. The nature of chronic pain can be mild to excruciating, it can come and go or be constant. The pain can be felt in headaches, joint pain, neck pain, back pain or an injury. Other kinds of chronic pain include sinus pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, TMJ, muscle injury or pain affecting different parts of your body.
The solution to overcoming chronic pain is to understand why your brain is communicating the pain in the first place. Together, we guide you in a discovery process to understand what was happening around the time of your pain. We explore what makes it worse and what makes it better. And why is this important? Because we know the brain can change how it communicates information, it can be retrained. We need to retrain your brain and body to be out of pain.
Simply put, with chronic pain, your brain and body begin to memorize the expression of pain as it would a habit. And the more we feel the pain, the stronger the habit becomes in the brain and body. We call this Hebb’s law in neuroscience: neurons that fire together, wire together and as a result it becomes easier to feel this same pain in the future. We are literally learning and training our brain and body to experience pain.
Many people would interpret this as a negative response from the body, something that is wrong with them. However, at Kinfolk, we remind you that pain is something your body is creating on purpose, to keep you safe. The challenge arises when we get stuck in this survival mode, it’s as if the brain and body get stuck playing a certain song. The good news is we can change the song; we can begin to interrupt the signals to your brain and biology that are creating the chronic pain. The adjustment guides your brain and body to a state of ease, healing and regeneration. Essentially we begin to teach your brain and body a new song, a new tune, set of lyrics through a gentle approach of chiropractic. This helps your brain know more accurately what is going on in your spine and body and can help your brain to switch off feelings of pain, when they are no longer needed.