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January 9, 2024
New Years Resolutions for Managing Chronic Pain

We all make New Year’s resolutions – from eating healthier to getting more sleep. However, for those of us living with chronic pain, a different kind of resolution is needed. Living with persistent pain can be emotionally and physically draining, which makes setting realistic goals even more important. Read on to learn how you can start the year by setting achievable resolutions to help manage your chronic pain that could improve your quality of life this new year!

resolutions for managing chronic pain

Managing Chronic Pain in the New Year

How Chronic Pain Can Negatively Affect Your Life 

Chronic pain can have a significant impact on your day-to-day life. In addition to physical discomfort, it can also affect people emotionally and mentally. For example, chronic pain can lead to feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress.

Therefore, it’s important to be aware of how chronic pain is potentially affecting other aspects of your life to make meaningful changes this year.

Lifestyle Changes and Resolutions for Managing Chronic Pain

Get Enough Sleep

Aim for 7–8 hours each night. Chronic pain can make it difficult to get quality sleep, So it’s essential to create a calming environment and avoid blue screens before bedtime.

Move More

Make sure you’re moving every day. Even if it’s just a few minutes of light stretching, this can help prevent stiffness and improve your range of motion.

Eating Healthy 

Eating healthy is vital for everyone, but even more so for people with chronic pain. This includes eating foods that reduce inflammation, like leafy greens, fatty fish, nuts, and seeds.

Reduce Stress

Stress can worsen existing pain, so take some time each day to relax and do something you enjoy. Whether it’s reading a book or listening to music, find something that helps you decompress.

Incorporate Mindfulness

Mindfulness exercises can help manage stress and improve awareness. Try breathing techniques or guided meditation audio tracks that work to bring the body and mind back into balance.

Speak Up

Don’t be afraid to speak up about your chronic pain with your doctor or loved ones. They can offer support, advice, and resources that you may not know about on your own.

Talk to Your Doctor about Alternative Treatments

Acupuncture, massage therapy, TENS machines, and other alternative treatments may be beneficial in managing chronic pain symptoms. So, make sure you speak with your doctor about any options that could work for you.

Get Outside

The benefits of spending time outdoors are endless- from improving mood to boosting energy levels. Plus, getting exposure to sunlight can help naturally boost Vitamin D levels which helps in managing chronic pain.

Make Time for Yourself

The key to managing chronic pain is understanding that self-care is not selfish. Making time for activities you enjoy, whether watching a movie or going for a walk, can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being.

Ways to Prevent Chronic Pain

  • Prioritize your activities: Sometimes, it can be difficult to manage chronic pain while also trying to keep up with your obligations. Instead of overwhelming yourself, prioritize the most important tasks and break them down into smaller steps that you can do over time.
  • Ask for help: You don’t have to face chronic pain alone; reach out for help from family and friends when needed. They may be able to offer support or provide resources that can help manage your symptoms more effectively.
  • Consider counseling: Talking about how pain affects your daily life can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, which are known to increase discomfort levels. If this option is right for you, seek out a qualified mental health professional who can help.
  • Stay active: Exercising is an excellent way to manage chronic pain. However, finding an activity that works for your body is essential. Low-impact exercises like yoga or swimming are great options that won’t cause further irritation.
  • Track progress: Keeping track of how you feel each day can help you identify patterns and better understand what works best to manage your chronic pain. Writing down moods, symptoms, and activities done throughout the day can give valuable insight into what might be causing flare-ups.

Live a Free Life from Chronic Pain

If you or someone close to you suffers from chronic pain, the New Year is a perfect time to start working on some resolutions. Chronic pain can negatively affect every aspect of your life, from physical activities to mental health. There are things you can do in the New Year to help relieve chronic pain, like stretching and exercising regularly, managing stress levels, getting enough sleep, and eating healthy.

If you need help developing a plan to relief or prevent chronic pain, contact us at Progressive Pain Management. We provide available solutions that work with your body’s needs. Please fill out the form below to get in touch with us.

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January 5, 2024
The Evolution of Pain Management

Since the dawn of time, there is one thing that has remained the same: pain. Humans have always experienced pain, and we always will. There is nothing more useful and treacherous than pain. In a sense, it teaches us what is hot, sharp, poisonous, and alerts our body of injury. But pain is dreadful to deal with on a daily basis. 

However, managing pain is still a relatively new topic. The field of pain management has only been around since the 1960s, so it is evolving at record speeds.  That’s not to say there haven’t been ways to treat pain, but historically, every method has been temporary or handled in either acute care or pain during death.   

evolution of pain management

The Evolution of Pain Management

The History of Pain Management 

In the 1600s, doctors treated patient’s pain by giving them opium. By the 1800s, ether and chloroform were introduced as anesthetics for surgery. This also caused doctors to question the ethics of performing surgery on unconscious patients. Patients, however, thought the use of medication was a godsend. Because patients would be under the influence of these anesthetics for a longer period of time, doctors could not resist the temptation to attempt more complex surgeries and procedures. 

In the 1900s, morphine and heroin entered the scene as pain medications. This was also the start of doctor’s worrying about addiction while ultimately wanting to improve their patient’s quality of life. 

Chronic pain became a topic worth mentioning, because it was previously treated acutely (injury or post-surgery pain) or relating to death. The idea that recurring pain in patients was an actual condition had been ignored, or the patients were considered delusional. If they refused medication for their pain, patients were referred to psychotherapy or even neurosurgery. 

By the 1970s, the field of pain management had been established, with a research journal and association – International Association for the Study of Pain. The concept of interdisciplinary teams were introduced and found to be effective at treating pain. In the 80s, well-known pain management physicians noticed a minor correlation between prescribed opioids and addiction, and pushed for the drugs to be used more  in non-cancer pain patients.  This lead to doctors prescribing the addictive drugs more liberally and with a backing from leading pharmaceutical companies, doctors did so guilt-free.  

“The thing about opioids is they are very effective in interrupting and shutting off pain signals in the brain,” said Marcia Meldrum, a researcher of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences at UCLA. “They are very, very effective. But they are also very dangerous.”

That didn’t last long. It turned out to be a driving factor in the opioid crisis that we are dealing with today. Many patients still see drugs as being the only way to manage their pain. 

The Field of Pain Management 

The International Association for the Study of Pain defines pain as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional response associated with actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage.” 

Since the field of pain management was introduced, it has been growing at exponential rates. With this knowledge, research, and advances in technology, a variety of non-medication treatments have emerged. 

Pain is processed in six steps – transduction, inflammation, conduction, transmission, modulation, and perception. Understanding these stages is important for physicians to know the best methods of treatment for your pain.

  • Transduction – Receptors in the body translate a physical pain or injury to the brain. 
  • Inflammation – Trauma triggers the damaged cells to release an inflammatory substance that causes the area of pain to become red, swollen, and a lowered pain threshold. 
  • Conduction – Pain signals are conducted along nerve fibers, which determine the quality of the pain
  • Transmission – Where one nerve pathway ends, neurotransmitters transmit the signal between a synaptic gap
  • Modulation – This adjustment of pain is performed by an extensive antipain (antinociceptive) system. The limbic system acts as a gatekeeper for pain or stress. When the spinal cord is overstimulated, the body can become hypersensitive to pain. 
  • Perception – When the pain signals finally reach the brain through the thalamus, they’re directed toward the region of the brain that regulates sensation, autonomic nervous system, motor response, emotion, stress, and behavior. This determines the individual’s perception of pain. 

Patients with chronic pain have reduced pain thresholds and therefore feel pain more intensely.

“Pain can make it impossible to live your life. You lose so much quality of life. So for many people, if the solution also means they may become somewhat dependent on a drug, they probably think, ‘Well, that would be better than this,’” said Meldrum. State laws have put a limit on opioid prescriptions so for many patients, they are unable to get their narcotic medications and in search of other ways to reduce their pain. 

New Technologies for Treating Pain

New and innovative technology is emerging and thriving in the world of pain management, making it a very exciting time for pain doctors and their patients. Those suffering from chronic pain have options for managing their pain and better access to physicians who can treat them. The ability to treat pain without the use of medication is on the rise, a result of the opioid epidemic. 

Neuromodulation is an alteration of the nerve activity by delivering electrical agents to a specific area. It can be used to treat chronic headaches to spinal cord injuries to urinary incontinence. It’s no wonder that with such a vast therapeutic scope, there is major growth in the industry.  For each existing neuromodulation treatment, there are dozens of new ones on the horizon. Experimental treatments to relieve pain are being tested and researched. 

Stem Cell Therapy is rapidly growing as more research becomes more readily available. Stem cell therapy is harnessing your body’s own cells and systems to effectively treat diseases and conditions. Your own cells are injected to the affected area, assisting in healing damaged tissue, ligaments, and even bone, while minimizing the need for surgery. 

The use of Ultrasound in the medical field is not new, but using it for the purposes of pain management is still a relatively new concept for physicians.  Ultrasounds have the ability to scan deep structures that aren’t visible on X-Rays. Ultrasound-guided procedures allow physicians to place needles for nerve block injections or other injections with complete accuracy. This allows treatments to be much more effective. 

Because technology is moving at rapid speeds, treatments will continue to evolve as the field of pain management grows.  Studies are more readily available, physicians are continuing education to remain up-to-date on the latest techniques and conditions, and treatment methods are becoming more and more state-of-the-art thanks to advances in technology. Learn how Progressive Pain Management is adapting to these changes and utilizing the most advanced technology and treatments to help their patients regain mobility, decrease pain, and improve their quality of life.

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December 21, 2023
Winter Activities that Worsen Back Pain

Winter is a fantastic season with white sceneries and joyous outdoor activities from ice skating, skiing, and snowballing to snowmobiling. While these activities are fun, they can strain your muscles, leading to injuries that can aggregate your back pain, making it not the best season for folks with back pain.

Acute back soreness, stiff joints, and muscle strain are a few unfavorable side effects that might result or worsen from engaging in intense winter activities and chores. Nevertheless, below is everything you need to know about winter and back pain.

winter activities that worsen back pain

Winter Activities that Worsen Back Pain

Winter Activities that can Worsen Back pain

Different activities in winter increase your risk of back pain. Here are some of these activities:

  • Cleaning Your House
    Deep cleaning during winter includes bending, scrubbing, lifting, and scooping, which can strain your back. Sometimes, you experience a pulled muscle when cleaning and do not realize it. As you continue cleaning, the muscles worsen, causing back pain.
  • Shoveling
    If you are not careful when shoveling snow off your driveway or walkways, it could cause more back pain. Heavy lifting and bending required for this task could strain the back muscles and result in more back discomfort.
  • Winter Sports
    Winter sports such as snowboarding and skiing can cause back pain. The heavy boots and skis can pressure the lower back, causing pain. Falling while skiing or snowboarding can also stress the spine and soft tissues around it, leading to more back pain. 

How Cold Weather and Winter Activities can Worsen Back Pain

The cold winter weather worsens back pain through a process known as vasoconstriction. This occurs when blood vessels narrow down and divert the extra blood to vital organs such as the lungs, heart, and brain. This results in less blood flow in the tendons, ligaments, muscles, and spine. 

Low blood flow in the spine causes it to become stiff and tight. It strains your back and pulls on sensitive nerves causing back pain. Engaging in strenuous activities such as gardening and cleaning during this time causes more pressure in the back, worsening your back pain. 

How You Can Prevent Back Pain

You can prevent winter back pain in various ways. Here are some tips:


  • Wear the Right Gear

When you’re outside, dress in several layers, preferably in comfortable, move-friendly clothing and equipment. The appropriate shoes will help protect you against accidents that could cause or worsen your back discomfort, such as falls, slips, and other mishaps.

  • A Healthy Diet

A balanced diet rich in calcium and healthy minerals helps prevent back pain. Calcium is not only good for the bones but also the spine. Minerals such as magnesium are good muscle relaxants that help prevent back pain during cold weather.

  • Exercise Your Body

Staying physically active relaxes your muscles and increases mobility. Reduced stiffness allows easy movement and flexibility even during the winter, preventing back pain. 

 Treatment Options for Winter Back Pain

There are different treatment options for winter-related back pain. Here are some treatment options: 

  • Cold therapy

The use of cold therapy is a highly effective treatment for various physical ailments, including back pain, swelling, and muscle strains. There are many ways to apply it, such as ice massages, coolant sprays, ice packs, and ice baths. These are among the easiest, most effective treatments for reducing back pain and swelling. 

  • Heat therapy

Steamed towels, hot baths, and moist heating packs effectively reduce back pain. They offer temporary back relief by relieving tension and stiffness in the back. 

  • Interventional procedures and therapies

Pain procedures such as injections and medications are effective in treating back pain. Therapies such as acupuncture, chiropractic services, and physical therapy also help relieve back tension and treat back pain.

Get Treatment for Pain

If you are experiencing winter back pain, you should seek professional help as soon as possible before it worsens. At Progressive Pain Management, we focus on interventional effective pain procedures and advanced therapies to relieve back pain. Contact us today or fill out the form below to request an appointment.

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December 8, 2023
Managing Your Chronic Pain Without Opioids

There are a lot of options for treating pain without the use of narcotics. The opioid epidemic is spreading across the nation at frightening rates. Many state laws are cracking down on opioid prescriptions to prevent excessive prescribing. 

However, this leaves many chronic pain patients feeling lost and confused about what options are available. In 2017, New Jersey passed a law that limits the initial opioid prescriptions to 5 days in an effort to reduce opioid misuse and addiction. Chronic pain is a legitimate medical concern. 

managing your chronic pain without opioids

Non-Opioid Treatments for Chronic Pain

 Over-The-Counter Pain Relievers

Taking OTC pain relievers may not be the best way to manage your chronic pain, but will help reduce symptoms on a daily basis. Many doctors prescribe Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) for those suffering from chronic headaches, osteoarthritis, or rheumatoid arthritis because these medications help fight pain and inflammation. 

Physical Therapy

Patients who suffer from chronic pain are typically unable to maintain a healthy, active lifestyle. This leads to weakened joints and muscles. Physical therapy helps patients build up to their full potential by using low-intensity therapies like hydrotherapy and ultrasound. Once they get used to that routine and intensity, the focus can shift to more targeted exercises for their specific pain. Physical therapy encourages a higher quality of life and helps patients regain mobility. 


This ancient Chinese form of pain management is most often used to help treat back and neck pain, osteoarthritis, and chronic headaches. The needles stimulate a nerve, signaling the brain to release endorphins that act as a natural opioid. By stimulating the nerve that runs from your brain to your colon, inflammation will lower and often reduce the cause of pain. 

High-Tech Methods for Managing Your Chronic Pain

With technology, new methods for treating pain are becoming increasingly popular with doctors and patients. 

Radiofrequency Ablations

This process uses heat to reduce pain by eliminating communication to the brain. It’s common in patients who suffer from chronic pain in the lower back, neck, and joints. It provides immediate relief and gets the patient back to a restored quality of life in a shorter amount of time. 

Spinal Cord Stimulation

Spinal cord stimulation hides the pain signal before it can reach the brain. A small device is surgically implanted under the skin and sends mild electrical currents to the spinal cord. Pain is reduced due to the stimulation modifying the pain signals and redirecting them away from your brain. Patients may sense a tingling sensation instead of pain. 

Nerve Block Injections

With the help of an X-Ray, these injections can dampen or block the pain. Nerve blocks help the pain spread to other body parts, by minimizing the signals sent to the brain. Different types of nerve blocks depend on a patient’s pain. Injections can be used to treat painful conditions, determine the source of pain, or to predict the result of treatment. 

Physicians are using these non-opioid treatments instead of writing prescriptions. Other therapies that don’t include medication like exercise therapy and cognitive-behavioral therapies (CBT) are gaining popularity. They focus on changing the patient’s attitude and awareness of their pain and teaching coping mechanisms to manage their pain better. 

We Can Help

If you suffer from chronic pain, talk to your doctor about these alternative options for treating pain. Progressive Pain Management can help you find the relief you need. Fill out the form below to get started. 

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November 30, 2023
How Shingles Affect the Nervous System

Shingles (aka herpes zoster) are rashes that occur in any part of the body. This rash often comes up in people aged 50 and over, causing severe pain. Shingles also appear like blisters on the dermatome’s skin area. But, what exactly causes shingles, and how can we best manage them?

What Causes Shingles?

Shingles is a skin disease caused by the varicella-zoster virus.  If you had chickenpox or took its vaccine, you might get shingles. That’s because the shingles vaccine contains chickenpox cells.

Chickenpox may disappear over time. But, the virus lingers in the brain and spinal cord tissues. So, the sleeping virus may reappear as shingles after some years. 

shingles affect the nervous system

How Shingles Affect the Nervous System

How Do Shingles Reactivate in the Nervous System?

The shingles virus stays dormant in the nerve tissues. If your immune system grows weaker, the virus reactivates. 

As the virus becomes active, it spreads through the spinal cord nerves to the skin. These nerves convey messages of pressure, itching, and pain. 

These messages transfer from the spinal cord to the brain. Once the varicella-zoster virus gets to the nerve endings, it shows up as a skin rash.

How Do Shingles Affect the Nerves?

As the virus travels along the nerves, it causes severe pain. This occurs even after the rash disappears. Still, many people may no longer feel the pain after two to four weeks.

Common effects of herpes zoster on the nerves include:

Movement Difficulty

Shingles can inflame your motor nerves, which affects muscle movement. As the condition develops, it weakens the muscles around the rash area. About 1 to 5 percent of people with herpes zoster have muscle weakness.  

Pain or Postherpetic Neuralgia

Postherpetic neuralgia is an intense pain that lingers after the rashes heal. This condition occurs in about 18 percent of people with shingles. Postherpetic neuralgia disappears within a year, but some never recover.

Facial Nerve Damage

Shingles can also affect the head nerves. Signs of this condition include:

  • Dry eyes
  • Ear pain
  • Tinnitus
  • Paralysis on one side of the face
  • Issues with taste
  • Loss of hearing
  • Ear blisters
  • Vertigo

Other Common Symptoms of Shingles

Besides pain, other signs of shingles include:

  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Numbness
  • Itching
  • Reddish rash
  • Blisters
  • Sensitivity to brightness
  • High response to touch
  • Headache

How to Best Manage Shingles Pain?

Pain from shingles is often intense, but there are things you can do to minimize it. These include:

  • Engaging in exercise
  • Eating balanced diet
  • Regular resting
  • Wearing silk or cotton clothing (to reduce irritation)
  • Applying ice to the sores

Can Shingles be Treated?

Yes. Vaccination and early treatment can reduce the risk of complications. Failure to treat in time results in postherpetic neuralgia. This condition happens long after the blisters heal.

Getting shingles usually means that your immune system is not in its best condition. A healthy lifestyle like exercise, rest, and balanced diets can help with that. 

If you want the best approach to your shingles recovery, fill out this form. Schedule an appointment today so that you can live a pain-free life tomorrow.

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November 22, 2023
The Science of Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition characterized by widespread pain, fatigue, and other symptoms. It’s estimated that one in every fifty people will develop the disorder at some point in their lives. But what exactly is fibromyalgia? And how does it affect your body? Let’s take a look at the science behind this mysterious condition.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a disorder that causes widespread pain throughout the body. The Mayo Clinic describes FM symptoms as “aching, burning or tenderness in your muscles, tendons, and joints”. Fatigue, sleep disturbances, and memory problems are also common. And while most people experience these symptoms on some level, those with FM report that their pain is significantly worse than the reported “average” person.

Although doctors are yet to discover the exact cause of fibromyalgia, most believe it’s likely a combination of physical, psychological, and environmental factors which trigger this disorder. These include genetics (family history), infections, and psychological stress.

the science of fibromyalgia

The Science of Fibromyalgia

The Science Behind Fibromyalgia Symptoms

Once you (or someone close to you) is diagnosed with FM it can be difficult to understand how all of your symptoms can be related. After all, what do “muscle tenderness” and “insomnia” have in common? Well, it turns out there are several physiological factors that could play a role in these seemingly unrelated conditions.

Muscle Tenderness

Studies have indicated that a dysfunction of the central nervous system plays an important role in pain perception for those diagnosed with FM. While it’s not known why this occurs, one popular theory suggests that certain systems within the brain “malfunction”, causing them to send out amplified signals of pain to other parts of the body.

Sleep Disturbances

As for sleep disturbances, studies have suggested that dysfunction within serotonin may play a role in FM symptoms. Serotonin is thought to influence arousal and sleep, and those diagnosed with this disorder often have low levels of serotonin. While certain drugs are currently being used to boost levels of this neurotransmitter, more research is needed to understand the complex role serotonin plays in this condition.

Psychological Factors

In addition to these physiological factors, psychological factors often play a significant role in FM symptoms. In fact, it’s estimated that over 95% of those diagnosed with fibromyalgia also suffer from some form of depression or anxiety. And while it’s difficult to determine whether these disorders cause fibromyalgia or vice versa, it’s likely that they interact with one another in a “vicious cycle” of symptoms.

Fibromyalgia Diagnosis

While there is no single test for fibromyalgia, your doctor will likely perform a variety of tests to rule out other conditions before diagnosing you with this disorder. The process can often be lengthy – it’s not uncommon for a patient to visit their doctor several times and undergo multiple tests before receiving an official diagnosis.

For example, your medical history will likely be considered as well as your symptoms. Along with these questions, your doctor may test reflexes and muscle strength, check your joints for signs of swelling, measure your body temperature and also check blood levels of various hormones.

Treatment of Fibromyalgia

Once fibromyalgia has been diagnosed it can sometimes be challenging to treat. While some individuals find relief with medication and lifestyle changes there is no “cure” for this disorder. However, by understanding the underlying cause of your symptoms, you can identify triggers and make changes to reduce them.

Some lifestyle changes that may help include exercise, stress management, diet changes, and appropriate medication.


Exercise has been shown to decrease fatigue associated with fibromyalgia while also reducing pain. It’s also thought that regular exercise helps combat the impact of depression on your body. Depending on the severity of your condition, you should consult your doctor before engaging in a new exercise routine.

Stress Management

Stress management is another important aspect of fibromyalgia treatment as stress can exacerbate symptoms. While this isn’t always easy, there are several strategies you can use to reduce your stress including relaxation exercises, meditation, and deep breathing.

Dietary Changes

Diet changes may also help. In some cases, certain foods may worsen symptoms as well as interact with medications you take to relieve fibromyalgia. Common food triggers include wheat, dairy, alcohol, caffeine, and sugar. It’s also important to avoid foods that have been artificially sweetened or that contain red dye #40 – these can cause a wide variety of adverse reactions for those diagnosed with this disorder.


In addition to dietary changes, medications may be prescribed to help combat sleep disturbances and pain. In particular, sleep aids can often help improve the quality of your shut-eye. Medications may also be employed for temporary relief from pain, while antidepressants can decrease symptoms associated with depression or anxiety.


While there’s no cure for fibromyalgia, by taking the appropriate steps to address symptoms, you can improve your quality of life. With the help of your doctor, you’ll be able to identify triggers and craft a plan that can assist you in coping with this chronic condition.

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November 2, 2023
Treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome(CFS), also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) or systemic exertion intolerance disease (SEID), is a debilitating disorder often characterized by extreme fatigue that is long-lasting. This disorder is complicated in that it can neither go away with rest nor even be explained by an underlying medical condition. In addition, the causes of chronic fatigue syndrome are unknown, although theories are speculating about the possible causes of this disorder.

Having said that, the following is a breakdown to help you understand CFS and the possible treatments.

chronic fatigue syndrome

Pain Symptoms of CFS

Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Although fatigue is a common symptom of chronic fatigue syndrome, it is worth noting that the symptoms may vary from one person to another. What’s more, the severity of the symptoms may fluctuate from day to day.

Other symptoms associated with CFS include:

  • problems with memory or concentration
  • Headaches
  • Unexplained muscle or joint pain
  • Unrefreshing sleep
  • Frequent sore throats
  • Tender and swollen lymph nodes in your neck and armpits
  • Chronic insomnia

How is CFS Treated?

Despite comprehensive research, the complexity of this disorder has made it difficult to find a specific cure. In addition, people diagnosed with this condition exhibit different symptoms; therefore, different medications and treatment techniques are used to manage the symptoms. As such, before taking further steps, it is imperative to speak to your physician, who can advise you on the proper treatment to undertake.

That said, the following are some treatment options available helpful in managing the disorder and relieving the symptoms:


Some symptoms of CFS can be managed through prescription and over-the-counter drugs. For example:

Pain: can be addressed by taking medications such as ibuprofen and naproxen sodium. If over-the-counter medication doesn’t relieve the pain, your doctor may recommend medications used to treat Fibromyalgia.

Depression: Many people suffering from this disorder exhibit depression as one of the symptoms. This can be dealt with by taking antidepressants that can help relieve pain and, at the same time, reduce stress.


Therapy is another treatment option for people with chronic fatigue syndrome. Putting it briefly, the benefits of therapy are immense as far as CFS is concerned. Therapy typically helps address:

Sleep problems: Your doctor may recommend a suitable sleep routine to the effect that it counters sleep disorders and, at the same time it helps deal with chronic pain.

Worsening conditions:  Exercising as a regimen helps counter the debilitating symptoms of CFS and even the worsening conditions. As such, your doctor may advise you on the various exercises to undertake and how you should go about it.

Post-External Malaise

People with CFS often experience a worsening of their symptoms after undertaking either physical or mental activities. This is what is known as Post-External Malaise, and it can last for an extended period.

As such, CFS patients are advised not to do things overtly. Instead, they are required to maintain a balance between activity and rest. This can be achieved by keeping a daily diary of the activities and symptoms to help you stay on track.

Final Thoughts

Chronic fatigue syndrome can lead to immense pain. Often confused with Fibromyalgia, the disorder can be challenging to point out from the onset. Therefore, patients need to be diagnosed appropriately and ultimately subjected to the proper treatment to manage the symptoms.

Having said that, if you or your loved one suspect that you have chronic fatigue syndrome, it is essential to consult a doctor immediately. In essence, a qualified physician can recommend proper care and treatment.

Contact Progressive Pain Management today to learn more about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and how our team can help with symptoms.

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October 10, 2023
How to Manage Chronic Pain at Home

Pain affects every aspect of your life, and normal daily activities are challenging when living with chronic pain. From the amount of sleep you get to the thoughts you have, pain can negatively affect your quality of life. 

Your day-to-day activities are crucial in managing your pain and maintaining a healthier life. Positive changes to your routine and lifestyle are excellent ways to reduce pain and improve your mood. 

Simple changes and additions to your daily life can make managing your pain easy. 

older couple taking selfing learning how to manage chronic pain at home

Learn how to Manage Chronic Pain at Home

How to Manage Chronic Pain at Home

Deep Breathing or Meditation

Practicing relaxation skills such as breathing exercises, visual imagery, meditation, and mindfulness are some techniques that can help you center yourself and take your focus off the pain you experience. 

Reducing Stress

Stress and Pain go hand-in-hand. When you are stressed, your body may react in different ways – such as tensing muscles – which can increase your pain.  This can be prevented by reducing and managing your stress. 

Stress can have a negative impact on your relationships, work ethic, eating habits, and mood.  Keep a list of what stresses you out and consider how it affects your life. Once you have a list of stressors, think of ways you can minimize them or eliminate the triggers. For example, if you get stressed and feel rushed during the work week, brainstorm ways you can make the week easier by incorporating things like meal prep, picking out your outfit the night before, or other ways to make the week go more smoothly. 

Stay Active

If you struggle from pain, exercise may provide the relief you are looking for. Cardio exercises use large muscle groups and raise your heartrate, which releases endorphins – you body’s natural painkillers. Exercising for 30-45 minutes of low-intensity aerobic exercise is recommended and can help relieve pain. 

Talking with your doctor before starting any new exercise program is important. 

Get More Sleep

It is no secret that pain can interfere with a good night’s sleep. You may have issues falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night. Medications can cause sleep issues, too. If your pain medication causes drowsiness and fatigue, you may be more inclined to sleep during the day instead of at night. Getting a proper amount of sleep at night is important to how your body copes with pain and how your body boosts your energy levels. 

Here are some ways to sleep better:

  • Practice Relaxation: Write in a journal, listen to soothing music, or practice deep breathing techniques to help prepare your body for restful sleep. 
  • Set a Schedule: Routine sleeping can help you get better sleep. Go to bed at the same time and set an alarm for the same time each day. 
  • Be Mindful of What You Eat and Drink: Caffeine and alcohol can affect sleep patterns, as well as heavy meals. If you need a snack before bed, try almond butter on toast, crackers and cheese, or nuts and fruit. 

Managing your pain at home is achievable when you have the support of a comprehensive care physician. Get the help you need from the team at Progressive Pain Management by filling out the form below. 


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October 4, 2023
Spinal Cord Stimulation: A Revolutionary Approach to Pain Management

Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) has emerged as a transformative approach to managing chronic pain conditions that have proved resistant to traditional therapies. This article delves into the groundbreaking field of SCS, shedding light on its mechanisms, applications, and potential to revolutionize pain management.

Chronic pain conditions represent a significant healthcare challenge, affecting millions of individuals worldwide. When conventional treatments fail, spinal cord stimulation (SCS) offers a promising alternative. This innovative approach has shown considerable efficacy in managing refractory chronic pain conditions, providing relief and improving the quality of life for many patients.

spinal cord stimulation

Spinal cord stimulation as a revolutionary approach to pain management

Understanding Spinal Cord Stimulation

SCS involves the delivery of low-level electrical pulses to the spinal cord, interfering with the transmission of pain signals to the brain. This process effectively ‘masks’ pain signals, replacing them with a tingling sensation known as paresthesia.

The Evolution of Spinal Cord Stimulation

The concept of SCS can be traced back to the 1960s, with the introduction of the Gate Control Theory of pain by Melzack and Wall. This theory proposed that non-painful input closes the ‘gates’ to painful input, preventing pain sensation from traveling to the central nervous system. This theory laid the foundation for the development of SCS.

Mechanism of Action

SCS works by modulating the pain signals at the spinal level, before they reach the brain. The electrical pulses delivered by the stimulator compete with the pain signals, effectively ‘drowning them out’ and preventing them from reaching the brain.

Applications of SCS

SCS has been successfully employed in managing various chronic pain conditions, such as:

  • Failed Back Surgery Syndrome (FBSS)
  • Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)
  • Ischemic and coronary artery disease

Benefits of SCS

SCS offers numerous advantages over traditional pain management therapies. These include:

  • Effectiveness: SCS has shown considerable efficacy in reducing pain intensity and improving the quality of life for patients with refractory chronic pain conditions.
  • Customizability: The stimulation parameters can be adjusted to meet the individual needs of each patient, ensuring optimal pain relief.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Despite the high initial cost, SCS can be a cost-effective solution in the long run, especially when compared with other long-term therapies.

Challenges and Limitations

While SCS offers numerous benefits, it is not without its limitations. These include the invasive nature of the procedure, potential for complications, and the requirement for ongoing management and adjustment of the stimulator settings.

Advancements in Spinal Cord Stimulation Technology

Over the years, significant advancements have been made in SCS technology. Modern devices are more sophisticated and reliable, offering improved pain relief and fewer complications.

The Future of Spinal Cord Stimulation

The field of SCS is evolving rapidly, with ongoing research and development paving the way for more effective and safer solutions for chronic pain management.


In conclusion, SCS represents a revolutionary approach to chronic pain management. By modulating pain signals at the spinal level, SCS offers a promising alternative for patients who have not found relief through conventional therapies. As research and technology continue to advance, the future of SCS looks promising, offering hope for millions of individuals living with chronic pain. Talk to the professionals at Progressive Pain Management to learn more about spinal cord stimulation therapy and if this treatment is effective for your chronic pain. Fill out the form below to get started.

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September 28, 2023
Chronic Migraines: Treatments and Prevention

Migraines aren’t just a typical headache. Chronic migraines can wreak havoc on a person’s life. If you’ve experienced these extreme episodes, you know they are very painful and can have someone disabled for very long periods of time. Chronic migraines are a very real challenge, but thankfully, some things can be done to treat them.

man with chronic migraines

Chronic Migraine Causes and Treatments

What is a migraine, and what causes it?

A migraine is a type of headache characterized by recurrent attacks of moderate to severe head pain that is often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light or sound.

Migraine headaches are believed to be caused by the dilation and contraction of blood vessels around the brain.

Migraines can be caused by factors such as dehydration, stress, or withdrawal from caffeine. 

Medical experts are still unsure of the exact causes, but the consensus is a temporary abnormal brain function and misfiring of nerves.

Medical Treatment Options for Severe and Chronic Migraines

The two most common treatments for severe and chronic migraine are Botox and nerve blocks.

Botox is a procedure where injections of purified botulinum toxin are made into the muscle tissue of the forehead to reduce the muscle contractions in this region, which can lead to headaches.

Nerve blocks work by injecting pain medication (such as anesthetic or cortisone) around certain nerves in the neck, head, or face.

Holistic remedies include treatments such as acupuncture and biofeedback.

For more information on medications, remedies, and medical treatments, click here

What Medicines are Available for treatment?

Anti-seizure medicines, along with beta-blockers and anti-depressants, are all within the realm of choices doctors go to to find treatments for their patient’s pain. Some aren’t advisable for pregnant women, or women who are attempting pregnancy, so keep that in mind! 

How can Chronic Migraines be Prevented?

Depending on why they occur, chronic migraines can sometimes be prevented by certain lifestyle changes, such as drinking more water, working out, and eating better. But, sometimes, the causes are more complex than that, and prevention requires medical intervention. Those preventative measures can come in many forms, such as Botox, Calcium blockers, and certain supplements.

One typical supplement used to prevent migraines is magnesium. Magnesium interacts with the chemicals in the brain and can stop a migraine before it happens. For more information on using magnesium to treat chronic migraines, click here.

What will Happen During an Appointment to Find Treatment?

A specialist will sit with you and ask a range of questions surrounding your family history, genetics, and lifestyle. If further testing is needed, an MRI or CT scan may be needed, and then from there, treatment will be decided based on input from yourself and your doctor.

Migraines don’t have to take over your life; you don’t have to wait out the pain. Take control of your pain management and contact Progressive Pain Management to gather more information on how we can help you on your journey to a pain-free life!

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