Whether cancer pain is a matter of the cancer itself or of the treatment that you are undergoing to eliminate or reduce that cancer, finding ways to alleviate that pain is necessary in order to lead a better quality of life. However, some cancer patients struggle with pain relief, wondering if it is even possible. No matter whether you are just beginning to deal with the pain or if you have for a while and are looking for solutions, here is some more information on cancer pain relief solutions and which ones may be right for your current situation and level of pain.
Can cancer pain be treated?
The good news is that, for most cancer patients, pain related to the cancer itself or the treatment of the cancer is something that can be managed. In order to accomplish this, you must work with your healthcare team to gain a better understanding of your needs and help them help you. Cancer pain is generally separated into three different categories, which include:
- Acute Pain: Mild to severe pain that comes quickly and lingers for a short amount of time.
- Chronic Pain: Mild to severe pain that lasts for a longer period of time.
- Breakthrough Pain: Pain that breaks through your current pain treatment and requires immediate attention. Often, breakthrough pain is a sign that your pain medication may not currently be enough or that certain activities are causing you bursts of pain.
Along with the different types of pain, it is important to understand where your pain is coming from. Is it the side effects of chemotherapy from your regular cancer treatment in North Bergen, NJ? Is the pain related to surgery or other major treatments you have had lately? Or, is your pain a direct result of the cancer itself? Speak with your healthcare team to not only discuss your current levels of pain but where your pain is coming from and how you can best minimize these issues.
How is cancer pain treated?
The best way to approach cancer pain treatment depends upon the level of pain and the type of pain that you are experiencing. For example, breakthrough pain may be treated with a combination of alternative treatment methods and over-the-counter medications. In regards to alternative treatment methods, some that you may want to consider include acupuncture, massage therapy, or even certain herbal or home-based remedies like CBD, for example. If you want guaranteed pain relief, popular OTC medications like Tylenol, Advil, and aspirin.
Before we dive into some of the many prescription medications provided for cancer, it is important to mention that many alternative treatment methods are not covered by traditional healthcare plans. If you are looking to try alternative treatment methods or you have found one that is right for you but find that it is too expensive to maintain, consider seeking out supplemental health care plans that can help you cover these costs. This will help you to reduce your overall costs as you navigate treatment.
For acute or chronic pain, stronger medications may often be needed, especially if you are undergoing certain surgeries or other major operations. These treatment options will often consist of opioids like hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, oxycontin, and Tramadol. These are much stronger pain medications that will help you to deal with overwhelming day-to-day pain that you would not be otherwise able to treat with the previously mentioned medications. You may also be able to use anti-seizure medications and antidepressants for the same purpose. If something is not working for you, remember to reach out to your doctor immediately to adjust your dose or find something that works better for you.
Is pain relief possible when you are dealing with cancer? For many, the answer is yes. However, you must understand your own pain and be able to communicate that with your healthcare provider if you are to experience the results you want. Make sure to use the information above to learn more about your pain, what options there are in terms of treatment, and what you can do to begin getting the treatment that you need to minimize cancer pain.