When you are hurting, it’s important to know how to speak with your doctor about it. The more accurately and clearly you can communicate your symptoms to your care team, the more quickly and effectively they can treat you.
One of the more important classifications in pain management is knowing if your pain is acute or chronic. To help you out our pain doctors in Benbrook TX (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) are giving a basic explanation to the differences between chronic pain and acute pain.
How to Know the Difference
There are several key differences between chronic pain and acute pain. Knowing about these differences will help you better identify how, when and where to seek help. For example, acute pain typically begins and ends quickly. It is typically brought on by a specific injury, event or disease. The level intensity of pain that is involved in acute pain tends to fade over time as the body heals.
Chronic pain, in contrast, is a condition where the pain lasts longer than 3-6 months. This type of pain can be triggered easily and tends to be more difficult to treat. Chronic pain tends to require more of a multi-disciplined approach to managing it. It’s best understood by considering it a disease in and of itself that may or may not have a known cause or cure.
Common Causes of Acute Pain
Acute pain has a very helpful purpose to it: it’s essentially a built-in smoke alarm for your body. When you experience acute pain, it means your body is injured. Listening to your body’s reaction to acute pain will help keep you safe.
Some examples of common causes of acute pain include:
- Pulled muscle
- Bone fracture
- Labor and childbirth
Depending on the severity of your acute pain and injury, you may need to see a doctor for treatment. Visit our acute injury page to learn more about acute pain and how the pain management specialists at our clinic can help.
Common Chronic Pain Conditions
As we mentioned earlier, chronic pain is pain that exists beyond 3 to 6 months. Many common conditions fall into the category of chronic pain, including the following:
- Back/Neck pain
- Hip/Knee pain
- Musculoskeletal joint pain
- Myofascial pain
To learn more about these and other common chronic pain conditions, visit CPI’s conditions page. We offer a broad scope of services to help you identify the root cause of your pain and help to build a customized treatment plan. We also currently have Benbrook doctors accepting new patients (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville).
When to Seek Help
After incurring an injury, carefully assess the damage to determine if medical attention is needed. In many cases, the answer is yes, especially if you are unable to stop the bleeding or if you suspect a bone is broken. We typically recommend a trip to urgent care or a same-day appointment with your primary care physician.
In the case of chronic pain, many people begin their pain management journey with their primary care physician. This can help with getting answers and beginning pain management strategies. If at some point a treatment plateau occurs, ask your doctor for a referral to a comprehensive pain management clinic.
The team at Comprehensive Pain Institute combines the latest in pain management treatments with personally customized care for each patient. Our doctors understand that pain is complex, and we personalize each pain management treatment plan based on your history, symptoms and unique condition. We do all we can to treat you as family. Schedule a consultation today to experience the CPI difference.