The United States is a highly medicated society. We have hundreds of over-the-counter pain-management drugs at our disposal, and doctors routinely write prescriptions for heavier pain relievers, including the opioid drugs that have recently become a national epidemic.
Fortunately, there are alternative solutions: occupational and hand therapy. If you’re tired of suffering from chronic pain and you don’t want to risk the side effects of harmful drugs, we can help you achieve safe, healthy, and long-lasting pain relief. For more information, contact our office today.
The dangers of opioid medications
We’ve all seen it broadcasted over the media: the serious dangers of opioid medications. These narcotics, which include both prescription medicines and illicit drugs, take the lives of approximately 115 Americans every day via overdose. Opioids are not only tremendously powerful, but they also have the potential for dangerous interactions with other drugs, and they are commonly known for their addictive nature.
Steroids, another type of prescription painkiller, come with their own set of hazards and dangers. Epidural steroid injections are used to ease pain, but they can also cause side effects include cataracts, hip arthritis, high blood sugar, stomach ulcers, and nerve damage. Even common nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can induce gastrointestinal bleeding and liver issues.
Furthermore, pain management pills only provide brief pain relief, which means that if you don’t receive enough therapy for your disease, you’ll have to take greater doses for longer periods of time.
All of those risks, concerns, and unpleasant side effects can be swept behind with occupational and hand therapy treatments. While some cases of severe pain may still require medication, occupational and hand therapies can help many patients dramatically reduce their dependency on painkillers, and in many situations, the requirement for these prescriptions can be avoided entirely.
Our highly-trained therapists use a combination of techniques to treat a wide range of painful problems, from acute injuries and post-operative wounds to chronic pain syndromes and conditions. Whatever the case may be, you can find relief with us.
Choosing occupational and hand therapy to relieve chronic pain
Our trained therapists design tailored treatment plans based on each patient’s unique needs. Your treatment plan will be tailored to your specific needs; for example, if you have a recent acute injury, we may employ massage therapy, ice and heat therapy, ultrasound, and other modalities to relieve pain and speed up the healing process.
Once you’re safely able to move to exercises without pain, your therapist will prescribe gentle stretches, walking, swimming, or other motions, in order to help mobilize your body. This is done to help your soft tissues move around easier and with more comfort, in addition to helping stiff or arthritic joints stay mobile and lubricated.
Your therapist will recommend gentle stretches, walking, swimming, or other activities to mobilize your body once you’re securely able to move to exercises without pain. This is done to make it easier and more comfortable for your soft tissues to move around, as well as to keep stiff or arthritic joints movable and lubricated.
Strengthening exercises will help you rehabilitate damaged muscles so they can operate without pain, as well as maintain a straighter posture to relieve pain caused by spinal nerve compression.
Methods of occupational and hand therapy have been shown to be effective. Effective treatment is dependent not only on the therapist’s efforts, but also on the patient’s. We’ll take the time to explain the nature of your discomfort and the importance of sticking to your treatment plan.
Hand treatment focuses on the complexities of the muscles in the hand, as well as the critical abilities required for basic motor movements. Improving fine motor abilities after a stroke necessitates rewiring the brain through specialized workouts that aid in the rebuilding of muscle memory and restoring performance to as close to pre-stroke levels as feasible.
During hand therapy, you may be encouraged to complete exercises like:
- Squeezing a stress ball
- Putting pegs in a pegboard
- Flexing rubber bands between your fingers
- Moving beans from one bucket to another
The idea behind these exercises is that they help to reprogram the muscles in the hand to make certain movements and tasks easier to complete. In order for the exercises to work they need to be repeated—and repeated often!
All of the treatment options will give you the resources you need to live a pain-free life and prevent future injuries from occurring.
Request an appointment today
If you are looking for pain relief, drugs are not the only option. A much more natural, safer alternative is available to you with occupational and/or hand therapy. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation and get started on your path toward long-lasting relief, free from the risks of harmful drugs.