Living with chronic low-grade pain is a stressor. This type of ongoing stress could be the blip that flies beneath your radar, which over time can have a devastating effect on your health. It's this type of stress that causes people to self-medicate, reaching for anything from fast food to wine, beer, or pain pills.
When we think about stress, we typically think of pressures from work, family, and finances, and so on. But other times stress can be as simple as opposing dynamics -- like two conflicting thoughts, carrying around a little bit more weight than you're used to, staying up later than you should, or spending too much time in one position. Identify your overt and covert stressors and learn how to balance the dynamics creating these stressors.