Article

Alternative treatments for pain: Telling fact from fraud

You’ve seen the ads on TV, online, in magazines, or even at the drugstore. They promise to end your back pain, stop your headaches, or fix your sore joints. The treatments they’re selling may be “traditional” and “natural,” or “the latest scientific breakthrough”– and all available without a doctor’s prescription. You may be tempted to… Read more »

Using acupuncture to treat pain

What is acupuncture? Acupuncture is one of the oldest healing practices in the world, and it’s now a popular treatment for all kinds of pain. In traditional Chinese medicine, it’s believed that acupuncture can reduce pain by changing the flow of energy in the body. This energy, known as qi (pronounced like “chee” or “kee”), travels along… Read more »

When caregivers need care: Supporting the people that you rely on

If you’re living with chronic pain, you might need someone to help you take care of your everyday needs – a caregiver. Caregiving can include anything from shopping, cooking, doing household chores, and driving to appointments, to being a companion and providing emotional support. It’s tough knowing that your health problems might affect the people… Read more »

The facts about prescription monitoring programs

A lot of states are fighting prescription drug abuse by setting up prescription monitoring programs (PMPs). You might want to know how this type of program affects you or the people you care about. If you’re in a lot of pain, you may wonder if PMPs will make it harder for you to get your medicine when… Read more »

Knowing when to find a new healthcare provider

Your primary care provider (PCP) is the person you see for yearly physicals and when you’re sick. Your PCP also sends you to see specialists and other care providers. The relationship that you have with your primary care provider is important. You want someone who understands you and the health issues you’re facing. In a… Read more »

When a family member misuses prescription drugs

Prescription drug misuse: A problem for the whole family Nancy takes prescription pain medication for chronic pain.  She and her husband frequently have their children and grandchildren stay at their vacation house. After a weekend visit Nancy’s husband tells her that one of their teenage grandchildren may be abusing drugs.  What thoughts go through her… Read more »

Get moving with the whole family

Most health care providers agree that staying physically active is a good thing for people who are living with chronic pain.   While people may think “if it hurts, rest it,” many pain specialists advise that people with chronic pain participate in some form of regular physical activity.  This is because when the parts of the… Read more »

Frequently asked questions about alcohol and pain medications

People with chronic pain should learn the facts about alcohol and how it can interact with pain medication, even if they only drink occasionally. Here are some things that are important to know: Combining alcohol with some pain medications can cause serious and unexpected health problems, and sometimes can even lead to death.  They both have the… Read more »

How to evaluate health-related research

Did you ever hear about the possibility that some childhood vaccines might cause autism? This claim was based on a study that was published in The Lancet – a reliable British medical journal – in 1998. Unfortunately, it took until 2010 before The Lancet finally removed the study from the medical literature, saying that the author’s results were based… Read more »