What might it take to treat pain effectively and permanently?
One significant challenge in the treatment of pain is that there is no objective measure of pain. Physicians have to depend on the subjective quantification of pain expressed by a patient. Therefore, pain treatment must be personalised by construction and design.
There is research underway to develop a new generation of non-addictive analgesics. One such approach leverages genetics to identify target receptors specific to an individual. However, pharmacological solutions, though necessary, are by design associated with significant latencies due to statutory and regulatory policies. They also have affordability implications, especially for developing countries and lower-income groups in developed countries, due to significant research, development, IP and marketing costs borne by pharmaceutical companies.
There is, however, an alternative approach that can:
1. Leverage the fact that most chronic and neuropathic pain are not merely physiological in nature, but involve psychological, social and environmental aspects as well.
2. Provide treatment that is natural, non-invasive and non-addictive.
3. Provide a better quality of life at affordable costs.
4. Leverage available pharmacological and diagnostic solutions that complement the above approaches.
It is common knowledge that simple lifestyle changes, such as sufficient sleep, healthy diet and regular exercise can lead to reduced chronic pain.
However, studies have also shown that complementary and alternative techniques such as Massage, Acupuncture, Psychotherapy and Yoga can significantly reduce pain and improve quality of life in patients suffering from chronic pain.
It is not surprising then that pain is one of the primary reasons Americans turn to complementary and alternative wellness approaches.