How can I work with my doctor to treat my chronic pain?

Manage your chronic pain proactively by building a better doctor-patient relationship. Use these strategies to get the most from your patient-doctor relationship:

Track your pain. Keep a symptom diary to record daily fluctuations in your pain, as well as the habits and activities that could be causing them, and share it with your doctor. Use a numbered scale to more precisely measure how much pain impacts your mood, relationships, sleep, and physical functioning.

Prepare for your appointment.
Whether it's your first exam or a follow-up, bring a list of specific pain symptoms along with questions to ask your doc.

Know when to go.
Make a doctor's appointment right away if your chronic pain simply won't improve, worsens, or is messing with your sleep, emotional well-being, or ability to function at work and home. Also, alert your doc to any new pain symptoms.

Bottom line: Don't go it alone. Ask your doc to make adjustments to your chronic pain treatment until it brings you the relief you need.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.