Pain is something we all experience and it comes in many different forms. As physiotherapists, we tend to mostly see two types of pain. 1. Somatic pain-pain that comes from our skin, tissues and/or muscles.
2. Nerve pain – pain that is caused by damage or irritation of our nerves.
Pain is our body’s way of telling us that something isn’t right and it’s a good thing as it leads us to take action.
Acute pain is of short duration and usually resolves as the injured tissue heals. For example when we sprain our ankle or give ourselves a paper cut, the pain decreases as our body gradually heals itself. When you come in for physiotherapy treatment, our primary goal is to address why you have pain in the first place.
In most circumstances we are able to significantly reduce your pain very quickly. However, sometimes a degree of pain and/or discomfort may linger for a few weeks. This is quite normal and lends itself to the idea that we need to give the body time to heal and correct itself.
Unfortunately there are no quick fixes with the human body – it may take just a moment to injure ourselves but a few weeks to recover! So if you are still feeling some pain even after a physiotherapy session, don’t be alarmed. The pathway to recovery isn’t always a quick one. Give it some time and trust your therapist.
For more on pain, stay tuned for next week’s article on chronic pain and how that differs to our discussion above.
Sara Andriejunas, Physiotherapist