Expressing Your Pain to a Doctor – Part 2

If you’re in chronic pain and trying to get help, one of the biggest challenges you’ll face is expressing your pain accurately. You won’t find a doctor who can help until you can clearly outline exactly what is going on. The good news is, we are medical professionals, and we know how to speak “doctor!” In our last blog, we discussed how to prepare for your appointment, including writing your symptoms down ahead of time and not asking for painkillers right off the bat. Today, we’re going into specific questions you’ll want to be ready to answer.

Where is your pain?

The more specific you can be about your pain’s location, the better. Don’t tell the doctor your entire back hurts. Instead, describe where the pain starts, if it travels, and where. Being able to point to locations is extremely helpful. If you have pain that moves around, that’s fine – just describe areas that hurt sometimes as well as areas that hurt consistently.

How bad is your pain?

Your doctor will probably ask you to rate your pain on a scale of one to 10, with 10 being the worst pain you can possibly imagine. Always work with the scale. If you say your pain is a 20 or 100, you significantly hurt your chances for good treatment. You have made your doctor think you are prone to exaggeration and that nothing you say can be taken at face value. No matter how bad your pain is, don’t let that happen!

When it comes to back pain management, the American Spine Institute is your answer. Contact us today!

Read Part 2

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