Chronic Pain May Affect Immune Function
Chronic pain is ongoing pain that lasts six months or more. There are many sources of chronic pain, such as migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome, back pain, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and other similar types of pain. Many of the illnesses that cause chronic pain affect the whole system and cause widespread pain throughout the entire body.
Living with chronic pain may suppress your immune system, making you susceptible to illness and injury. All of us have cells in our bodies, called T Cells, that attach to our DNA and fight off infection. In people who are suffering from chronic pain, the T Cells experience changes that cause them to be less effective at preventing infection. Essentially, pain causes the immune cells to turn off or reprogram how they work.
To make matters worse, chronic pain causes chronic stress. When the body is in a state of stress, the neurologic, endocrine, and immune systems all experience changes. High levels of the telltale stress hormone Cortisol are often linked with a declining immune system. As the body’s stress response increases, immune function decreases.
Older populations are at particular risk of compromised immunity when they suffer from chronic pain. Drugs are less effective in older people, and side effects become more dangerous. This makes controlling chronic pain for the elderly challenging.
How to Reduce Chronic Pain
The most effective way to prevent chronic pain from suppressing your immune system is to manage your pain. While drug therapy is a common treatment for pain, there are many alternatives to help manage pain. Some methods to manage pain, which can be used exclusively or in combination, are:
- Trigger point injection
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation therapy (tens)
- Physical therapy
- Weight loss
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Chiropractic interventions
- Dietary changes
Jersey Premier Pain can provide you with assistance to reduce your chronic pain. Our mission is to provide our patients with the care they need and deserve so they can enjoy their lives again. Call Jersey Premier Pain at 201-386-8800 today to explore what options may be available to you.
How to Increase Immune Function
Your immunity is derived from an entire system, not a single component, which makes affecting the immune system an intricate, delicate task. When your immune system operates at its highest potential, complications from chronic pain are lessened. “Boosting” your immune system with supplements is not a scientifically confirmed means to increase immunity, but reducing stress can help increase immunity and reduce pain.
At Jersey Premier Pain, we understand that reducing stress is not simple. We have gathered some tips to help increase the effectiveness of your immune system.
- Eat a nutritious diet
- Get regular exercise
- Get adequate sleep
- Use proper hygiene
- Moderate alcohol intake
- Minimize alcohol and tobacco use
Unchecked chronic pain can damage your whole body and mind. Let us help you manage your pain to keep you healthy.
Jersey Premier Pain can help you live a better life with less pain. Call us today at 201-386-8800 to take advantage of our cutting-edge techniques for pain management.