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If you are reading this section, you are probably suffering with pain or you may know someone who is. Please continue reading, because this page contains very important information on pain.
Because the cause of pain can vary from patient to patient and effective treatment methods vary as well, it is important to have a wide range of treatment modalities available to you .Acute pain is the most common symptom for which patients seek medical evaluation. New pain complaints result in 40 million visits to the doctor annually, and 45% of persons in the United States will visit a doctor for pain at some point in their lives. The prevalence of various chronic pain syndromes in the United States is estimated to range from 2% to 40%. Approximately 75 million persons in the United States live with “serious pain,” and nearly 50 million are partially or totally disabled by pain.
According to Western science, pain is associated with complex inter-relationships between the nervous system, spinal cord, thalamus, higher brain, neuro-peptide substances and emotions derived from cultural and past personal programming. Traditional Asian medical systems relate pain more to short-term or longstanding blockages in the flow and integrity of Blood, vital energy (Qi). In either case, pain can be viewed as a kind of alarm, an urgent message from the body-mind-spirit entity that something is out of balance in the system, and must be corrected to maintain health and homeostasis, or even life itself. In this way pain is useful, in fact a lifesaver at times, when it alerts us to take urgent action for survival and self-care. Yet in a lot of cases, pain becomes a self-perpetuating experience that remains long after the actual damage to the body is resolved. In some cases, such as with fibromyalgia or some neuropathies, severe pain can arise when there is no apparent injury to the body. It is these chronic pain cases that most challenge the Western pain paradigm.
One of the great contributions Oriental Medicine has made is the understanding of the Root and Branch of pain (and other disorders). In its simplest form, the Root refers to underlying causative factors that pre-dispose a patient to pain. These may involve longstanding emotional upsets and repression, viral or parasitic effects, organ imbalances, unresolved old injuries, or hereditary influences. The Branch of pain refers to the actual sensations of pain, restricted range of motion, joint degeneration or vertebral mis-alignments. The sensation of pain can be associated with any dysfunctional bodily system, not just the nervous system. Different types of pain and handled differently.