Article

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 »

Parenting with migraine: Preventing medication-overuse headache in teens

If you have migraines and you are a parent, it’s possible that one of your children also has migraines.  If both parents have migraines the chances may be increased that their child will have migraines. As a person with migraines, you may have learned that overusing your medication can actually lead to more headaches. How… 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 »

Alcohol and chronic pain

People have been using alcohol to help cope with chronic pain for many years. Many people also may use alcohol as a way to manage stress, and chronic pain often can be a significant stressor. Research studies have found that as many as 28% of people with chronic pain use alcohol as a pain management… Read more »

Describing your pain

Receiving good pain treatment can depend in part on how well you can describe your pain to your health care providers. Pain has a language all its own and sometimes people may find it a challenge to clearly describe their pain. One reason that pain can be difficult to describe is because everyone reacts so… Read more »

Pain and music: Dealing with pain to the beat of a different drummer

Sometimes, pain persists in spite of whatever treatment health care providers use to relieve it.  While it has become fairly common to add other treatments like relaxation, meditation, and massage, along with standard medical approaches to pain management, music is a less well known non-medical method for helping relieve pain. Actually, using music as a… Read more »

Gender, pain, and intimacy

We all know the typical “I will fix it” response that many men are prone to take when their female partners talk about being in pain. Adopting a “fix it” approach does make some sense. None of us wants to see our partners suffer, and it is right in line with time-honored theories about pain behavior–… Read more »

Managing chronic pain at work

Benefits of working Besides providing a regular source of income, working is important to most people in several ways.  People need to feel productive.  Being able to work boosts self-esteem and helps you to feel at your productive best. The challenges of work, a job well done, and interactions with co-workers, can be rewarding in… Read more »