In a normal situation, the pain slowly resolves as the injury that caused it begins to heal. For example, if you cut your finger while cooking, your finger will probably hurt for a few days, or maybe a week. But once your cut has healed and only a small scar remains, you won’t feel much, if any, pain.
Unfortunately, there are certain conditions in which our brains interpret small injuries as long-lasting, serious injuries. One such condition is known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS).
CRPS is a devastating disorder that can lead to depression, anxiety, and the inability to function in a world that has little understanding of this syndrome.
Luckily, chiropractic care can help individuals who suffer from CRPS.
What Is CRPS?
CRPS, or Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), as it is sometimes called, is a chronic pain condition. Essentially, patients with CRPS experience pain described as burning, stabbing, and shooting along with extreme sensitivity to touch (allodynia).
Unfortunately, our understanding of CRPS is very limited, as early cases of CRPS were attributed to malingering or just “mental weakness”. Still today, some doctors and researchers do not accept that CRPS is a real condition. They believe that patients are faking their symptoms to get drugs or sympathy.
What we know about CRPS is that it is caused by a malfunction in the body’s pain processing center. There are many areas of both the central nervous system and the peripheral nervous system that are involved with the process.
Making matters even more complicated is the fact that CRPS can affect a patient’s emotions and mental state as well. For this reason, when the condition lasts for many months or years, it can be very hard to treat.
The complicated connections between mental, emotional, and physical health necessitate an approach that addresses all of these issues. This means that patients with CRPS generally need to work with a variety of specialists across many different fields.
How Does CRPS Develop?
Sometimes, CRPS will develop without any known cause. However, many patients will develop the condition after suffering a minor or major injury. In short, the problem develops when the body continues to sense that there is something wrong in an area of the body, long after the injury in question has healed.
How Is Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome Treated?
Truthfully, there isn’t widespread agreement amongst medical professionals on the best way to treat CRPS. Clinicians will often prescribe desensitization training, mental health counseling, imagery exercise, physical exercises, medications, and many other treatments.
Some of these treatments work well for certain patients, while others do not. Some patients try every therapeutic option under the sun without relief and begin to feel hopeless.
However, chiropractic care might serve as a treatment option that many patients haven’t tried or even considered.
Chiropractic Care and CRPS
Through the use of spinal manipulations, chiropractors may be able to reestablish connections between the nervous system and the affected area of the body. Because pain is processed in the central nervous system, it’s critical that any misalignments be addressed.
Chiropractors can correct subluxations in the spine. In doing so, they can potentially help patients better process the sensations their bodies are experiencing. The thought is that, with better connections between the nervous system and the affected area, the patient will no longer have any inappropriate pain sensations.
If you suffer from chronic pain and want to see what chiropractic care can do for you, contact At Last Chiropractic today. We are the premier chiropractors in Lithia, FL. and we would love to help you. Book your appointment now!