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Pain can dramatically decrease our quality of life

Any pain can have a negative impact on quality of life. There are both physical and psychological consequences.

In general, pain prevents us from doing what we want and sometimes has a considerable impact on morale.

Even mild pain that is not sharp and short-lived, but lingers for longer periods of time, is hard to live with. This is the reason why we must not let the pain settle. When the pain persists longer, it can become chronic and actually become a disease.

The Path of Painful Information

In the body we find in different places full of pain receptors. After activation, these receptors transmit a message to the brain via the nerves. This can already cause unconscious protective reflexes, such as when one suddenly withdraws one's hand from a hot object. This message can also be modulated, in the direction of a decrease or an increase in the painful sensation. It is only when it reaches the brain that this message is decoded: is it, for example, a burn or a sting? Where in the body does the pain we feel come from? etc

The body is well equipped to feel pain and fight it

When the pain goes away quickly on its own, we can deduce that our body is dealing with the situation effectively (eg, brief pain after a fall). In this case, the pain is rather a friend who signals that something is wrong, which is or could be dangerous.

If the pain persists it means that the inner control system is overwhelmed by events. There pain becomes an enemy. There is no reason to suffer, and many drugs exist to lessen or eliminate the pain.

Never hesitate to consult a doctor   for acute or prolonged pain. Sometimes the onset of pain signals a real emergency, other times gradually worsening pain may reflect an evolving disease that needs to be diagnosed and managed.

Acute pain - chronic pain 

Acute pain therefore plays an alarm role that will allow the body to react and protect itself against a mechanical, chemical or thermal stimulus.

When the pain becomes chronic, this alarm mechanism is no longer justified: in this case, the pain becomes a disease in its own right.

Different forms of pain can be distinguished according to the physiological mechanisms involved:

  • inflammatory pain, which covers all the pain associated with inflammation phenomena

  • neuropathic pain, associated with damage to the central and peripheral nervous system

  • mixed pain, which combines an inflammatory component and a neuropathic component, as in lumbosciatica or after surgery.

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