Pain has a purpose.

“That’s the thing about pain, it demands to be felt” – John Green

IMG_4230Pain is not your enemy.  It is merely your body’s way of communicating with you.  At KORE, we spend about 50% of our time managing pain issues that come up with people on a daily / weekly basis.  We WANT our clients to tell us when they are in pain so we can address the issue before it becomes something more serious.  We DO NOT want our clients to push through the pain and create more issues due to their bodies trying to compensate and move around a pain point. Pain has a purpose, in reality it is the only way your body has to communicate with your brain.  By sending a stimulus, “hey, that hurts” the brain can adjust what it is doing and hopefully eliminate the situation causing you pain.  Think back to the last time you touched a hot pan, your hand jumped back before you actually had a chance process that the pan was hot.  Pain is a survival mechanism which by design, exists to protect the body.  If you feel pain that is the brain communicating to the body that it is under threat and something has to be done about it. Imagine for a second if we didn’t have the ability to feel pain, our lives would be significantly shorter because there would be no mechanism in place to spring into action when we grabbed that hot pan.  We would then get second or third degree burns on our hands which we wouldn’t feel so we would continue to do normal activities with our hand.  The burns from our hand would get infected which we wouldn’t feel either so we would do nothing to treat or care for it.  It would only be a short period of time before we would die of an infection. So what is my purpose in that depressing story?  We now live in a culture where pain is prevalent.  Health care providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for pain killers in 2012 (that is enough for every American to have a bottle of pills)!!  As staggering as that is, if you were to go to the doctor about a pain issue, 90% of the time, you would leave with a prescription for a pain medication.  The problem with pain meds is that the pain is simply masked, it still exists within the body, you just can’t feel it.  In December 2012 a study on the Global Burden of Disease found musculoskeletal conditions affect more than 1.7 billion people worldwide!   That is a lot of people (to put it in perspective: it is double the amount of cars on the roads around the world today) walking around on pain meds, masking their muscular pain! At KORE, we use a lot of different strategies to address musculoskeletal pain, myofascial trigger point release, stretching to relieve tight muscles, exercises to correct postural issues, exercises to fix movement issues, and exercises to strengthen weak muscles.  With the right information and strategies, we have had a great amount of success of reducing our client’s need to mask pain issues with medication. Pain has a purpose, don’t ignore pain!  Communicate with a professional who has the ability to help you address your pain issues.  This could be a chiropractor, a massage therapist, an acupuncturist, or a personal trainer who specializes in corrective exercise programs (FMS certified is a good start!).   One of these strategies will actually work to correct the problem causing the pain instead of masking it with a prescription drug. Elise Matthews
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