Lifestyle Changes to Help You Live Better with Chronic Pain
Millions of people of all ages suffer from chronic pain. You might always be looking for ways to manage your symptoms and live better with your condition, but it isn’t always easy. For many people, they figure that all they can do is learn to cope and accept the hand they’ve been dealt. While some symptoms may never fully resolve, there are some lifestyle changes you can make to help improve your life with a chronic illness or chronic pain.
Lower Your Stress as Much as Possible
Stress can cause inflammation, which may worsen pain. Lower your stress levels as much as possible by practicing healthy coping mechanisms. You may journal, do yoga, spend time with your pet or just head to a quiet space and take deep breaths when you’re overwhelmed. Don’t feel bad about taking time for yourself.
A stress management plan makes it easier to identify your triggers and respond better. To start, identify your primary causes of stress. For most people, work, money, relationships and mental health are the biggest factors that impact their stress levels. Don’t feel guilty about being honest. Write down everything you can think of that stresses you out and work through the list. One by one, come up with ways you can deal with these stressors as they arise and make coping with them easier on yourself.
Spend Time Outside
Nature has a healing effect on many people, and you will likely find that getting outside even for 15 minutes a day can lift your spirits. Physical activity is also an important regulator of chronic pain. While you may find it uncomfortable to move, staying sedentary can actually make your body feel worse whenever you do eventually move. Stay active, keep your muscles strong and work out to the best of your physical ability. Whether you take your lunch outside, garden or drink your morning coffee or tea on the deck, find ways to get outdoors at least once every day.
Make Home Improvements
Modifications like touch-activated faucets and a home elevator could ease your pain and make your home more comfortable. A home elevator supplier can help you choose the perfect lift for your residence, regardless of how big or small it is. Raising toilet seats, adding automated lights and a shower chair can also make daily activities less challenging.
Lower Your Alcohol Consumption
Drinking can cause a wide range of health problems, including worsening your experience with chronic pain. Using alcohol to cope with your pain increases your risk of alcohol addiction. It also leads to greater sleep disturbances and contributes to systemic inflammation.
Seek Out Support
It’s common to feel isolated by your pain. Seek out support in the form of friends, family and even online support groups for people with your condition. Working with a therapist can also be immensely helpful by providing one-on-one attention in ways others may not know how to. Be mindful of your emotions, and respect the need for greater care when you need it. Don’t be afraid to be forthcoming about what you’re going through and let others support you.