Traumatic versus chronic pain. Why chronic pain exists?

If you suffer some form of an accident and for example hurt a joint, this causes traumatic pain and normally heals after you treat it. If however you leave it untreated, traumatic pain likely turns chronic. So do get help already (see my last post for tips on where and how). 

The reason traumatic pain goes chronic is that your body adapts around the point of hurt and that adaptation causes all sorts of issues elsewhere. Once your body gets used to the new position, which protects the hurt point in detriment of the any others, it is very dificult to teach it another way of being. Our body is a complex system of interconnected muscles, tendons, joints, bones, nerves etc, all of which have some ability to adapt to change within a small healthy range that respects the rest of the system and that we grow into through all our lives. Beyond this small range there is still adaptability, at the expense of chronic pain. Chronic because it is engrained in how that complex system now works. Anything you improve when you treat a part of the chronically affected system affects any of the other parts of it in an unknown manner and pain can start elsewhere until hopefully you finish trailing a complex set of causes and consequences and find a new balance that is pain free. This is where I’m getting to after 15 years.

Chronic pain doesn’t just start from a untreated traumatic injury. We can genetically inherit a propensity to it. For example, I am hyper mobile. This means my ligaments have genetically less than usual collagen. This makes me very flexible. This characteristic affects about 10% of people. Most do not have chronic pain. But if they injure themselves at a point and don’t treat it fast enough, their system is more prone to adapt at the cost of other joints and points leading to chronic pain.

Chronic pain is also influenced by psychological factors. If you grow up in an environment of stress where people give you low value, this can make you grow with a posture of sadness, that leads to joint pain further down the line.

Dental problems incorrectly treated are another major cause of chronic pain. Imagine you have a tooth removed. The body does not like emptiness and so, when your system is supple because maybe you are hyper mobile of your muscles are week, you body adapts how it can and closes the gap. Now your teeth are bones that are attached to a bone structure that are connected to all the other bones in your body. Bones are not fused to each other, they are loosely held together using joints, muscles, tendons etc. Skeletons in laboratory fit together elegantly but are held together with screws to replace the effects of all the bio matter. When you pull the arm of such a skeleton, the rest of the body moves too. Everything is intertwined in a set of causes and consequences we do not fully understand yet. So for the space in your mouth to close this must be at the cost of pulling other stuff just a little to accommodate that.i have seen this in many people. The problems start 10 years later and so the connection to the cause is rarely remembered. But it’s there. I had a lower left tooth removed. My whole system adapted to close the space. Years later I was pronating my right foot and the other was flat. I was overusing my left leg and the joints got tired. I rusted my left ankle for the first time 4 years later, then again 6 years later, then my left knee, my ill-treated traumatic reason. 

Other bite issues are also a major factor. Whether your upper and lower jaw close elegantly, in a manner that keeps them precisely parallel to each other, affects the way you tilt your head, which affects the way you hold your head, which affects your upper back, etc etc, it’s a closed system and all parts are interconnected, inevitably.

My traumatic injury happened to come about at a time of personal stress, during the first signs that my relationship was going to fail. In times of stress, our body has less room to heal itself during sleep and keep us totally functional. It also has less resources to do a full blown recovery of the injury. Stress and sadness is also a factor of chronic pain.

Often in chronic pain sufferers all factors converge. I suspect a lot of pain syndrome sufferers like fibromyalgia recognise some of them in their lives.

The way I have managed to cure my chronic pain has been to address all these aspect, slowly but surely, through any and all means possible. From pain-ridden to pain free. And you can too. Stay tuned.

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