Some jobs are more physically demanding than others, but all workplaces have potential injury-inducing dangers. For instance, you could trip on uneven flooring or injure your back by lifting a heavy box. Depending on the type and severity of an injury, employees sometimes experience chronic pain after accidents on the job.
You’ll need specialized medical care to address your injuries if you get hurt on the job. When looking for New York’s top workers’ comp doctor for relief from chronic pain after an accident, our team at Workers Comp Doctor can help you. We are a free resource for helping you find and make appointments with certified workers’ compensation doctors in your area who can accurately diagnose and treat injuries from workplace accidents.
Keep reading as we discuss chronic pain and offer pain management tips to help you improve your daily quality of life.
Chronic Pain vs. Acute Pain
After a work accident, you might have one of two pain types. Acute pain is sharp, short-term discomfort that starts quickly and lasts less than three months, such as burns, bruises, or cuts from car accidents.
Chronic pain is persistent pain that lasts more than three months. The aches and discomfort are complex and can affect your daily activities. Chronic pain may be due to back injuries, arthritis, migraines, and surgeries.
10 Ways to Manage Chronic Pain After a Workplace Accident
Some tips to consider for chronic pain after accidents include.
1. Taking a Team Approach to Medical Care
Some workplace injuries are complex and beyond the scope of a typical primary care physician. Working with a healthcare team that can provide all aspects of your chronic pain treatment may be beneficial.
For instance, you may need help from a medical doctor to treat your injury and then a physical therapist for rehabilitation and recovery. By embracing the team approach, you can ensure that you receive well-rounded care.
Relaxation can significantly improve pain if you can reduce excessive muscle tension. Deep breathing and meditation techniques can lead to whole-body relaxation, which loosens tight muscles.
Meditation comes in many forms. You could listen to a repetitive beat and then breathe in sync with the sound from the diaphragm, not the chest. Some people find it easier to relax by ignoring distracting thoughts and repeating a specific phrase. You could also attend mindfulness, meditation, or yoga classes.
3. Hot and Cold Therapy
If your chronic pain is muscle-related, you could try hot and cold therapy at home or in a medical office. It is a common technique that safely reduces pain in two ways.
Applying heat to the location of your pain helps relax the muscles in that area. Relaxed muscles mean more blood flow and quicker healing. Cold therapy is ideal for swollen, inflamed injuries because the ice helps restrict blood flow to reduce swelling.
You might benefit from exercise, depending on the severity of your workplace injury and pain level. Physical activity encourages the brain to release endorphins or feel-good chemicals. Not only will exercises boost your mood, but you can also experience pain relief by strengthening your muscles to reduce the risk of re-injury.
5. Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
Some types of chronic pain after accidents are due to inflammation. Inflammation is how the body’s immune system responds to injury. The injured area receives an influx of blood to encourage healing, but the extra blood supply causes heat and swelling.
Inflammation usually leads to pain and discomfort. However, prescriptions for nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can reduce inflammation and discomfort.
7. Stress Management
It’s often surprising to learn how much stress and mental well-being affect chronic pain. Anger, anxiety, depression, and stress can heighten the body’s sensitivity to pain. You could see a therapist for your anxiety following the accident. You might also find physical relief through different stress management techniques.
Ways to reduce stress include:
- Listening to calming, uplifting music
- Exploring guided imagery involving an imagined tranquil scene that promotes safety and encourages relaxation
- Using positive self-talk
- Mindful meditation with controlled breathing
8. Change Your Habits
Unfortunately, some things people enjoy could worsen chronic pain from accidents. For instance, drinking alcohol can make sleeping soundly more difficult. Living with persistent pain also makes sleeping difficult, so you can improve your sleep quality by reducing alcohol consumption.
Eating an unhealthy diet can also affect your chronic pain. If your body is trying to heal itself and causing painful inflammation, the foods you eat could heighten the effect, including soda, red meat, and fried food. However, you could help reduce inflammation by incorporating nuts, fatty fish, olive oil, and tomatoes into your diet.
9. Physical Therapy
Physical therapy aims to help people improve their ability to move their bodies after an accident or illness. Chronic pain can stem from muscle tension. You could relieve that tightness through specific flexibility and strengthening exercises and begin moving with less discomfort.
The physical therapist will assess your endurance, range of motion, strength, posture, and balance, which could all contribute to your pain. They can also provide recommendations and strategies to try at home to improve your movements and minimize chronic pain after an accident.
Besides physical therapy, massage therapy is an excellent way to reduce muscle tension. Receiving weekly or monthly massages and other chronic pain treatments can help reduce inflammation, improve relaxation, increase blood circulation, and enhance flexibility.
Get The Help You Need Today
Living with chronic pain after an accident can affect every aspect of your life. However, you can reclaim your life and wellness with the help of Workers Comp Doctor.com and our directory of physicians, orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, neurologists, chiropractors, and pain management specialists. Doctors in our directory are authorized medical providers, accept workers’ compensation insurance, and have years of experience treating injured workers.
Start your search for a trusted doctor by calling Workers Comp Doctor at (888) 590-4030 Same-day appointments may be available.