Chronic Pain Disability

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Top Causes and Treatment Options Available for Chronic Pain

People with persistent pain often experience difficulties managing their day-to-day lives. Chronic pain will not only affect your physical health but can also affect your emotional health. Chronic pain is often a sign of an underlying medical condition. Pain is considered chronic when it is ongoing and lasts longer than twelve weeks, as opposed to acute pain, which may not be associated with an underlying condition and goes away quickly.

The pain may continue for months or years and may decrease your overall quality of life. Chronic pain can even affect mental health and may lead to problems such as anxiety or depression. Chronic pain is a serious condition that may remain for weeks even after an injury has begun to heal. In severe cases, it can even become a chronic pain disability that limits mobility and the ability to function normally in daily life. 

Is Chronic Pain A Disability?

Chronic pain is usually an indication of an illness or injury that has damaged the nerve fibers. Nerves may become damaged over time, causing intense pain. A multitude of medical conditions may lead to chronic pain. It can itself cause several types of disabling conditions. 

Knowing all the causes, signs, symptoms, and qualifying criteria for this condition will help applicants avoid denials of their disability applications. The following are common conditions that may lead to chronic pain or be exacerbated by chronic pain: 

  1. 1. Arthritis and other joint problems – 

According to the Arthritis Foundation, “arthritis” is an informal way of referring to more than one hundred types of joint pain, joint disease, and related conditions. People of all ages, sexes and races have arthritis. It is the leading cause of disability in America. Joint pain and stiffness are some of the most common arthritis symptoms. It can lead to swelling and tenderness of the joints, which can lead to severe pain. 

Studies have revealed that there is no cure for some types of pain caused by arthritis. People diagnosed with this disease and related joint problems should seek medical treatment as soon as possible to avoid worsening of the condition, decreased mobility, and increased pain.

For some, arthritis is nothing more than a mild annoyance or inconvenience. For others, arthritis can be severe enough to prevent them from being able to carry out day-to-day work activities or other physical activity. When this is the case, arthritis sufferers may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits.

  1. 2. Chronic fatigue disorder – 

Chronic fatigue disorder, sometimes called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), is a severe disorder often characterized by extreme fatigue or tiredness. The fatigue may worsen over time and may lead to excessive levels of pain. Fatigue worsens with physical or mental activity but does not improve with rest. 

There is no cure or approved medical treatment for chronic fatigue disorder, but there are medications that may help treat symptoms and reduce the impact of the condition. While chronic fatigue may not itself cause pain, chronic pain can exacerbate CFS. Possible complications of chronic fatigue syndrome worsened by chronic pain include:

      • Lifestyle restrictions
      • Increased work absences
      • Social isolation
      • Depression

If you have CFS and are unable to work, you can apply for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA).

     3. Endometriosis – 

The lining of a woman’s uterus is called the endometrium. Endometriosis is when tissue that forms the lining of a woman’s uterus grows outside of the uterine cavity. It is a serious disorder that is often linked with an increased risk of female infertility. Some women experience a mild form of the disease yet have agonizing pain.

It is also possible to have a severe form of the disease and yet experience little discomfort. Pelvic pain is the most common symptom of endometriosis; however, in serious cases, the pain may become severe and affect a woman’s ability to engage in daily activities. 

Pain medications may help reduce the symptoms of the disorder. In difficult situations, your healthcare provider may recommend a surgical procedure. The surgery may only reduce the symptoms of the ailment and not cure the condition completely. 

Although endometriosis is not commonly thought of as a disability, its symptoms can severely limit a person’s life. If you can no longer work or earn a living because of your endometriosis, you may be eligible to receive Social Security disability benefits.

 4. Back pain – 

Back pain is another serious condition that can severely limit a person’s ability to engage in normal daily activities and maintain full time employment. Back pain is a prevalent condition among the population, especially construction workers and other physical laborers. Many people fail to have it treated before it turns serious. Severe stomach pain, unexplained weight loss, and high fever are common symptoms of severe back pain. 

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should contact your doctor. Regular checkups with your physician will help detect any underlying conditions that may be treatable. Your physician will recommend an appropriate treatment plan depending on the type of back pain you experience to help reduce its effect on the body. 

    5. Inflammatory bowel disease – 

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a term used to describe two similar conditions: Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. These conditions are characterized by chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The condition can cause severe pain and may even lead to bloody stools. An individual diagnosed with IBD may experience abdominal pain and even unintended weight loss. 

Several types of medications may be used to treat IBD. Surgery may be the only treatment option available for more serious cases of IBD when other treatments fail. The disease and symptoms of inflammation can be reduced but cannot be cured and may lead to chronic pain. In some cases, it can even increase the risk of colon cancer. 

   6. Broken bones – 

Breakage of bone can lead to chronic pain, which may not heal correctly even after recovery. An individual may experience bleeding and severe pain around the site. You should immediately see a doctor for treatment of the condition. The pain may take some time to subside. Your physician will recommend the appropriate medication or treatment. You should rest the site of the broken bone by preventing pressure on your body until your body has healed.

After some time, you may experience ongoing pain related to the break. While chronic pain is not a disability listed in the Blue Book of impairments, oftentimes pain is associated with an underlying condition that is listed in the Blue Book. Seek treatment when you experience a broken bone not only to protect your health, but because you must have medical evidence to prove your condition and seek disability benefits. 

7. Cancer

Cancer can grow into or begin to push on nearby organs, blood vessels, and nerves. New pain or pain of unknown origin that does not go away or gets worse is a sign of cancer. Pain is a natural response to cancer. Pain may even arise after surgery or treatment of the condition. Cancer can lead to severe pain that limits the physical health of the individual in addition to other related symptoms. These conditions may even affect the mental health of the patient and may trigger episodes of anxiety and depression. Disability and chronic pain are closely related. When you struggle due to this condition, you should not hesitate to explore your options for support.

Treatment Options Available for Chronic Pain

There are several over-the-counter medications and surgical treatments that may help alleviate the symptoms of pain. Sometimes, chronic pain has no cure, and the individual may suffer to some degree for the remainder of their lives. This is why it is necessary to seek treatment at an early stage to determine whether there is any underlying condition that may be treated. 

Aside from over-the-counter medications, certain medical procedures may help reduce the severity of symptoms. Acupuncture, surgery, and electrical stimulation are medical treatments that may help reduce the pain. Even if you are experiencing minor pain, you should consult your healthcare provider. They will evaluate the root cause and suggest the ideal treatment for you.

In addition to medical intervention, various lifestyle remedies may help alleviate the pain. Physical therapy, tai chi, yoga, psychotherapy, and meditation are other options that may help reduce the pain. 

Can You Get Disability for Chronic Pain?

Many medical conditions can contribute to pain and may worsen the situation. As stated above, chronic pain is not listed in the Blue Book list of impairments. If another impairment causes your chronic pain, you should consider seeking disability benefits. 

Keep medical documentation and other records that may help to prove the condition. Social Security has different qualification criteria for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). To get approved, you must ensure that you meet the SSDI or SSI eligibility requirements mentioned in the Blue Book.

The SSA will evaluate your physical and mental health to determine the severity of your conditions. A disability lawyer can help you throughout the entire process. From helping you file the application correctly, with all relevant documentation, to representing you on appeal, if you have already been denied. Contact us today.