Chronic Pain

In today’s fast paced society, when we seek advice from a health care professional about chronic pain, we expect a quick fix. This quick fix might come in the form of a painkiller, like an ibuprofen or paracetamol.

Of course there are intractable chronic illnesses where medication is both appropriate and important. But according to medicine watchdog – National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) – this shouldn’t always be the case.

What qualifies as chronic pain?

In fact, as stated by NICE in its new guidelines on the assessment and management of chronic primary pain – which can be defined as a pain with no identified cause that has lasted for at least three months – there is ‘little or no evidence’ that treating the condition with painkillers makes any difference to the person’s quality of life.

This is big news as according to the latest stats, chronic primary pain could affect up to 4 million people in the UK.

How do you manage chronic pain?

NICE’s guidelines on the assessment and management of chronic primary pain

The report says: “People with a type of chronic pain called chronic primary pain should be offered supervised group exercise programmes, some types of psychological therapy or acupuncture.

“Some antidepressants can be considered for people with chronic primary pain.

“However, paracetamol, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (these include aspirin and ibuprofen or opioids) should not be offered.

“This is because, while there was little or no evidence that they made any difference to people’s quality of life, pain or psychological distress, there was evidence that they can cause harm, including possible addiction.”

Helping to rid chronic pain

Taking a holistic approach to pain is something Osteopath Robin Kiashek has been practicing for more than 20 years.

Robin said: “As noted by NICE, taking pills for chronic pain does not always get to the bottom of the problem. That’s not to say I’m against taking medicine if it is both appropriate and prescribed by your GP.  But as an osteopath, my aim is not only to address current symptoms, but also prevent illness or further injury.

“Pain of any kind can take over your life. The pain you are feeling might not even relate to the problem. It could be referred pain. This is where the pain you feel in one part of your body is actually caused by pain or injury in another part of your body.”

Getting to the bottom of chronic pain

To do this, Robin takes a holistic approach. He uses a wide range of therapies including:

  • Osteopathy – this involves the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of a variety of muscle, joint and skeletal conditions. Through these non-invasive hands-on techniques and by working closely with your, Robin can help restore your body’s natural functions , resolve your symptoms and improve your overall health.
  • Western Acupuncture – a practice which sees fine needles target trigger points associated with certain ailments to help with pain relief.
  • Low Level Laser Therapy (or LLLT) – this ‘cold’ laser light therapy can be used on problem areas to speed up the body’s natural healing process.

“If there is a problem, we need to have a look at what is going on,” Robin says. “We all know how busy GPs are at the moment, but I am able to spend more time with patients to really get to the root of the problem.”

If you are suffering from chronic pain, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Robin operates his osteopath clinic in a COVID-secure building therefore he is able to see patients in a COVID-secure way.