Pain meds won’t “cure” your pain
“Sometimes people expect to be totally pain-free, but that’s not our goal,” says M. Fahad Khan, MD, who specializes in pain management at NYU Langone’s Center for the Study and Treatment of Pain. Rather, the goal is long-term management and improved functionality “so you can go to work, cook for yourself, take care of your home responsibilities, have meaningful relationships,” he explains. “In most doctors’ minds, the pain control is almost secondary.” Don’t miss these other secrets pain doctors won’t tell you.
Pain meds are just one part of your total pain management strategy
Dr. Khan says there are five main classes of treatment for chronic pain, ranging from most to least invasive: surgery, injection therapy, pharmacology (opioids and non-opioids), physical modalities (physical therapy, exercise, heating pads, ice packs, massage therapy), and complementary and alternative meds (acupuncture, biofeedback, mind-body therapies, energy healing, herbal supplements, etc.). “There are a ton of different treatments and the best doctors will work with you to create a personalized plan using all of these modalities,” he notes.