Manage Pain, Inflammation & Your Immune System with Physical Therapy
In this time of the pandemic, most people are aware of certain steps they can take to keep healthy, such as washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, and of course, maintaining safe distances while also using a mask or face covering.
Did you know that you can also help to maintain your health by treating your pain? In order to find out how first we’ll need to
answer a few simple questions.
Is pain a bad thing? The unpleasant sensory and emotional experience of pain is a near-universally felt condition, and few would claim that their lives wouldn’t be improved without it. However, pain is not only normal, it’s actually helpful, protecting and alerting us to possible harms, such as stepping on a sharp object or suffering an injury. However, when pain lasts longer than normal, or after the normal inflammatory and healing process subsides, pain may become abnormal and no longer helpful to us.
Is inflammation a bad thing? Inflammation is a normal part of the healing process. However, just like pain, inflammation can become an abnormal response when it persists. Stress, sleep, diet, anxiety, depression and physical activity can all influence pain and inflammation, and in turn, pain and inflammation can influence stress, sleep, diet, anxiety, and depression.
Stress, lack of sleep, and poor dietary habits can lead to a chronic inflammatory state and can ultimately reduce our ability to fight infection or recover from an injury. In fact, just pain itself can cause a number of immunosuppressive effects, meaning that appropriate pain management is a vital part of health and well-being.
What can you do about this and how does this relate to physical therapy? Physical therapy can help you recover from pain and inflammation. Techniques such as cognitive functional therapy, manual therapy, and most importantly, physical activity and exercise can help your body return back to normal by reducing pain and inflammation. These efforts can also help to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression.
The relationship between pain, inflammation, and your immune system has never been so critical. With the world fighting against COVID-19, it is essential that we keep our immune systems strong and healthy. If pain is making it harder for you or someone that you love to fight infection, you can improve your immune system and reduce your pain with the help of your Excel physical therapist. Together, we can do our part to keep you healthy and pain-free! Visit us to get control over your pain and your life!
By Matthew Will, PT, DPT
Our full May 2020 newsletter! https://online.flippingbook.com/view/242067/