Sports, Pain​ & ​

Regenerative Institute

Treat Acute Pain Before It Becomes Chronic

No one wants to be in pain, yet all of us have experienced it at one point or another. It begins early in life at the very point of our entry into this world. There are all sorts of over-the-counter remedies to help us deal with pain, no matter its cause. There are all types of pain involving every part of our body. There is muscle pain, organ pain, chronic pain, acute pain, and more. Here, we will deal with acute pain and what to do about it so that it doesn't end up becoming chronic.


Usually directly related to the damage of soft tissue (i.e., paper cut, muscle sprain, etc.), acute pain is typically problematic for a time span of six months or less (some sources state three months or less). Differing from chronic pain, it is distinct, severe, and sharp.


An Up Close and Personal Look at Acute Pain

Commonly used to describe acute pain are the following adjectives:

  • Numb
  • Dull
  • Cramping
  • Stinging
  • Sharp
  • Sharp
  • Tingly
  • Burning
  • Aching
  • Stabbing
  • Throbbing

Common examples of acute pain causes are as follows:

  • Surgery
  • Broken bones
  • Dental work
  • Childbirth
  • Labor pains
  • Cuts
  • Burns
  • Other various injuries and conditions

How Does Acute Pain Differ from Chronic Pain?

Persisting for weeks or months (possibly even years), chronic pain is frequently associated with arthritis or other underlying conditions.


In direct contrast, a clearly defined injury (or other sudden condition) usually spurs the onset of acute pain. When the underlying cause heals, ordinarily, acute pain resolves. An easy and condensed way of remembering what defines acute pain is this: the sudden onset of pain.


Acute Pain Becoming Chronic

Though acute pain is normally short-lived, and dissipates when the cause has healed, it can become chronic. When this happens, the pain lasts much longer, possibly months or years.


What is the reason for this? Usually it occurs because the underlying condition (physiological) is unresolved and ongoing. Examples of this would be arthritis or cancer.


Stopping Acute Pain

Let's take a look at a number of different methods of relieving acute pain before it can make life a living nightmare by becoming chronic. The following could be considered before pain becomes chronic:

  • TENS or transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation
  • Behavior modification techniques
  • Psychological counseling
  • Physical therapy
  • Non-habit-forming, nonprescription drug treatments
  • Nerve blockers
  • Alternative treatments for pain management

One or more of these treatments may be required in order to deal with acute pain.


Once Pain Becomes Chronic

Okay, you tried everything that you could, but your acute pain developed into chronic pain. What can be done now? The following can be used to help resolve chronic pain:

  • Injections
  • Non-addictive pain medications
  • Chiropractic care
  • Physical therapy
  • As a last resort, surgery

When addressing chronic pain, for any of the above to be truly successful, the problem should address the whole person. Included would be the treatment of depression, mental health issues, and more.


Possible Effects of Chronic Pain

Chronic pain can result in the following emotional and physical effects:

  • Depression
  • Fear of reinjury
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Psychogenic pain
  • Neurogenic pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Arthritis pain
  • Arthritis pain
  • Headaches
  • Tense muscles
  • Changes in diet and appetite
  • Lack of energy
  • Limited mobility

At Sports, Pain, & Regenerative Institute (SPR), we are of the firm belief that no one should have to suffer. If you are suffering acute pain and want to avoid it becoming chronic, contact our knowledgeable staff to schedule a consultation.