A study in the British Medical Journal reports that 43% of people in the UK live with some form of chronic pain.
The study also found that 14% of the UK’s 65 million residents have chronic, widespread pain. Another 8% experience neuropathic pain and 5.5% live with fibromyalgia.
Neuropathic pain is a complex type of pain initiated or caused by a primary lesion or dysfunction in the nervous system. It is defined as pain arising as a direct consequence of a lesion or disease affecting the somatosensory system at either the peripheral or central level.
Physical therapy tackles the physical side of the inflammation, stiffness, and soreness with exercise, manipulation, and massage, but it also works to help the body heal itself by encouraging the production of the body’s natural pain-relieving chemicals. This two-pronged approach is what helps make physical therapy so effective as a pain treatment for neuropathic pain.
Fibromyalgia is a syndrome characterized by widespread chronic unabated pain in addition to a host of several additional co-morbidities that can severely impact and disrupt a person’s daily life. The symptoms associated with fibromyalgia may originate from abnormal central nervous system output. Fibromyalgia isn’t just one condition; it’s a complex syndrome involving many different factors.
Physical therapy has been shown to improve physical function and symptoms in patients with Fibromyalgia and includes light aerobic exercise, relaxation techniques, stretching, strengthening and manual lymph drainage therapy and connective tissue massage.