It is indeed a blessing if you are living a pain-free life because those among us who develop conditions that induce chronic pains suffer through life in the worst way imaginable. It is one thing to feel chronic pain once in a while, but living with it takes an unimaginable toll on the mental health of a person. Various studies have explained that the brain perceives short term and long term pains differently, and the latter has the potential to impact various aspects of a person’s life.
It is stated by many credible researchers that a long term chronic pain can be considered a disease itself as it has psychological symptoms and consequences like anxiety and depression. These chronic pains can be managed by prescription painkillers but such drugs need to be administered properly by following various safety precautions. We have discussed here the five most common psychological effects of chronic pain so that you take them seriously and ignore neither your pain nor someone else’s.
Try to talk to someone nicely while keeping your skin forcefully pinched, and multiply that pain by a factor of at least a hundred. You may then be able to understand the mood swings of people suffering from conditions that induce chronic pains. These pain-induced emotional changes often give rise to psychological conditions like anxiety, depression, and fear.
As a result, the patient’s dependence on pain management drugs like increases because these drugs temporarily mask the pain and give the patient a much-craved feeling of happiness. Therefore, as the effects of drugs start to wear off, a sense of dejection and discomfort reappears and the pain patients are drawn to these drugs again.
When we lie down to sleep, we are mostly shut off from the distractions of the world and this feeling of seclusion makes the chronic pains worse at night. As a result, people suffering from such pains become insomniac and even those who can sleep, cannot stay asleep for the whole duration of healthy sleep hours. Unfortunately, the lack of sleep is not just a problem itself, but it is also documented to have many adverse psychological and physiological impacts on a person’s health.
It has been revealed by some credible studies that people suffering from chronic pains are not only prone to worse physical, mental and emotional states, but their memory and the ability to concentrate also take a severe hit. Pain interferes with the cognitive part of their brains and considerably affects their ability to process and store information, which results in poor memory. Moreover, our concentration levels are largely determined by the number of variable distractions in our heads, and there is nothing more distracting than blinding pains. Therefore, it is quite commonsensical to deduce that people with chronic pains will have an impaired ability to concentrate.
People suffering from chronic pains find themselves incapable of partaking in the most mundane activities like socializing, walking, or doing exercise. Moreover, they may be unable to engage in activities like playing with their toddlers or working for more than a few hours, and they will start to blame themselves for not being able to play their respective roles. The resultant guilt may get so overwhelming that it will further reinforce depression and anxiety in a vicious cycle.
Relationships require a lot of patience to function properly, and people with chronic pains do not have that because they exhaust most of their tolerance while managing their pains. As a result, they start to snap often and their relationships start to fall apart because it gets difficult for their partners to put up with them.