Types of Chronic pain:
- Nociceptive pain
- Neuropathic pain
What Causes Chronic Pain?
Chronic pain is more than just about pain lasting longer than six months. It is about how the central nervous system is being affected in a process known as central sensitization. Central sensitization is characterized by increasingly widespread pain and increasingly intense pain. When you sustain an injury, your body’s nervous system collects information from the injured site. It sends this information through electrical signals to your spinal cord and brain. Your brain analyzes this sensory information and sends out a message that alerts your body that something is wrong. Your body then works hard to heal the injury.
Normally, once the injury is resolved, your pain goes away, and the neurons stop firing. But with Chronic Pain, the neurons continue firing, thus informing your brain that you are still in pain when you really shouldn’t be. Once the Chronic Pain cycle in your brain is established, it also starts to attach emotional meaning to the experience of being in pain.
In fact, someone suffering from Chronic Pain starts to feel high levels of distress because of the anticipation of being in pain. The suffering is no longer just physical, but also highly psychological/emotional.