4 Convenient Locations:  Ocean Township   |   Hazlet   |   West Orange   |   Florham Park
Email: [email protected]   


January 18, 2024
Preventing Winter Sports Injuries

Winter sports are a popular and exhilarating way to enjoy the colder months. However, they also come with the risk of injuries. Understanding the risks associated with winter sports is crucial for ensuring a safe and enjoyable season. In this article, we will explore common types of winter sports injuries, discuss proper warm-up and stretching techniques, provide tips for maintaining proper form and technique, discuss how to recognize and respond to injuries, and offer guidance on rehabilitation and recovery after a winter sports injury. By following these essential tips, you can minimize the risk of winter sports injuries and enjoy a safe and injury-free season.

winter sports injuries

How to Prevent Winter Sports Injuries

Understanding the Risks of Winter Sports Injuries

Winter sports activities such as skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, and ice hockey can be thrilling and challenging. However, they also involve a certain degree of risk. It is essential to understand the common types of injuries that can occur during these activities to be better prepared and take preventive measures.

Common winter sports injuries include sprains, strains, fractures, dislocations, and concussions. These injuries can result from falls, collisions, overexertion, or improper technique. It is important to recognize that these activities put stress on various parts of the body, including the ankles, knees, wrists, and head. Proper equipment, technique, and preparation can significantly reduce the risk of these injuries.

Common Types of Winter Sports Injuries

Winter sports injuries can vary depending on the activity and the surrounding circumstances. In skiing and snowboarding, common injuries include sprained ligaments, broken bones, and head injuries. Ice skating injuries often involve ankle sprains or fractures due to falls or collisions. Ice hockey can lead to various injuries, including concussions, broken bones, and muscle strains.

To prevent these injuries, it is crucial to wear appropriate protective gear, such as helmets, wrist guards, and knee pads. Additionally, learning and practicing proper techniques for each sport can significantly reduce the risk of injury. It is also important to be aware of one’s limits and not overexert oneself, as fatigue can lead to poor judgment and increased risk of accidents.

Proper Warm-up and Stretching Techniques

Proper warm-up and stretching techniques are essential before engaging in any winter sports activity. They help prepare the body for the physical demands of the sport, increase flexibility, and reduce the risk of muscle strains and sprains.

Before starting, it is important to engage in a light aerobic activity, such as jogging or jumping jacks, to increase blood flow to the muscles. This can be followed by dynamic stretches that mimic the movements involved in the sport, such as lunges or leg swings. It is crucial to focus on all major muscle groups, including the legs, arms, and core.

Static stretching, where stretches are held for 15-30 seconds, should be done after the activity to improve flexibility and prevent muscle tightness. It is important to avoid bouncing during stretches, as this can lead to injury. Instead, stretches should be performed in a controlled manner, with a focus on breathing deeply and relaxing into the stretch.

Tips for Maintaining Proper Form and Technique

Maintaining proper form and technique is crucial for preventing winter sports injuries. Each sport has its own set of specific techniques that should be learned and practiced to reduce the risk of accidents.

In skiing and snowboarding, proper body position and balance are essential. It is important to keep the knees slightly bent, the weight centered over the skis or snowboard, and the arms forward for balance. Learning how to fall safely can also help prevent injuries, as it is inevitable that falls will occur.

For ice skating, maintaining proper balance and posture is key. The knees should be slightly bent, the back straight, and the arms relaxed but ready for balance. It is important to focus on the gliding motion and avoid excessive leaning or jerking movements that can lead to falls.

In ice hockey, proper body positioning, skating technique, and stick handling skills are crucial. Wearing protective gear, such as helmets and padding, is essential for preventing injuries due to collisions or falls.

Recognizing and Responding to Injuries

Despite taking preventive measures, injuries can still occur during winter sports activities. It is important to be able to recognize the signs of an injury and respond appropriately to minimize further damage.

Signs of an injury may include severe pain, swelling, deformity, inability to move the affected body part, or loss of consciousness. In the case of suspected head or spinal injuries, it is crucial not to move the injured person and to seek immediate medical attention.

For less severe injuries, the RICE method can be applied. This stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. Resting the injured area, applying ice to reduce swelling, using a compression bandage to support the injured area, and elevating the injured limb can help reduce pain and promote healing. However, it is important to seek medical attention if the pain or swelling persists or if there is any concern about the severity of the injury.

Rehabilitation and Recovery after a Winter Sports Injury

After an injury, proper rehabilitation and recovery are crucial for a safe return to winter sports activities. This involves working with healthcare professionals, such as physical therapists or sports medicine specialists, to develop a personalized rehabilitation plan.

Rehabilitation may include exercises to improve strength, flexibility, and balance, as well as techniques to enhance proprioception and coordination. It is important to follow the prescribed rehabilitation program diligently and gradually increase the intensity of activities to prevent reinjury.

Additionally, it is crucial to listen to the body and give it enough time to heal. Rushing back into winter sports activities too soon can lead to further injury and setbacks in the recovery process. Patience, consistency, and proper guidance are key to a successful rehabilitation and full recovery.

Enjoying a Safe and Injury-Free Winter Sports Season

Winter sports can be a thrilling and enjoyable way to embrace the colder months. However, it is essential to understand and mitigate the risks of winter sports injuries. By following the tips outlined in this article, such as understanding the risks, wearing appropriate protective gear, practicing proper warm-up and stretching techniques, maintaining proper form and technique, recognizing and responding to injuries, and engaging in proper rehabilitation and recovery, you can minimize the risk of injuries and enjoy a safe and injury-free winter sports season.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure. So, take the necessary precautions, stay within your skill level, and have fun while staying safe on the slopes or rink.

Stay safe this winter sports season by incorporating these essential tips into your routine. Prioritize your safety and the safety of others by being prepared, wearing appropriate protective gear, and practicing proper techniques. Enjoy the exhilaration of winter sports while minimizing the risk of injuries.

Fill out the form below to contact the team at Progressive Pain Management. If you experience a winter sports injury this season, our team of experts can help.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

December 13, 2023
Sacroiliac Joint Pain: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Do you experience pain when you stand up out of a chair? Do you feel a dull or sharp pain in your lower back? You may be experiencing Sacroiliac Joint (SI) pain. This condition is very common – in fact, 15-30% of people who suffer from this kind of pain have joint problems they may not know about. 

The good news is that numerous treatments are available to relieve you of this pain. But what is the SI Joint? And what causes this kind of pain? 

Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Sacroiliac Joint Pain Causes and Treatment

What is the Sacroiliac Joint?

The sacroiliac joints are in your lower back, sitting on both sides of your spine. Their main job is to carry the weight of your upper body when you stand, walk, or shift your weight to your legs. 

Although the pain typically starts in your lower back, if often moves to your buttocks, thighs, or upper back. 

Causes of Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Because the SI joints carry the weight of your upper body, there are multiple causes for why you experience pain. 

  1. Traumatic Injury – An injury like a fall or being in a car accident are common reasons for having SI joint pain. The force from this kind of injury strains the ligaments around the joint. If the ligaments aren’t treated correctly, they can tear and loosen the SI joints. When the joints move around too much from being loose, the SI joint can cause chronic pain.
  2. Arthritis – A specific kind of arthritis called ankylosing spondylitis affects the spine. It causes pain in your hips and buttocks.  
  3. Pregnancy – Women have a higher chance of experiencing SI joint pain during pregnancy and childbirth. The same hormones that prepare the pelvis for childbirth loosen ligaments around the SI joint.  This causes aches and pains that are common in pregnancy. The added weight during pregnancy also affects your SI joint. 

Symptoms of Sacroiliac Joint Pain

SI joint pain can be hard to tell apart from other types of lower back pain. Because the pain can spread to your upper back, thighs, and buttocks, the pain could be confused with other conditions. 

The main symptoms to look for are: 

  • Lower back pain
  • Thigh pain
  • Discomfort and pain after sitting
  • Hip/Buttocks pain

It’s common to have after sitting for a long time, but SI joint pain also happens after running, climbing stairs, or taking large strides. 

Diagnosing Sacroiliac Joint Pain

SI joint pain can disguise itself as different types of pain, like a herniated disc or facet joint arthritis. Doctors perform a series of tests to determine if you are suffering from SI Joint Syndrome.  Pain during these tests helps the doctors learn more about where the pain is coming from. 

Tests might include a variety of physical tests where the doctor will put stress and pressure on the joint to see if there is soreness or tenderness. 

Doctors may also order diagnostic tests to confirm the source of your pain. These tests are often joint injections to confirm the root of your pain and imaging like X-Rays or MRIs to see a detailed image of soft tissue and bone. 

Treatment Options for SI Joint Syndrome

Treatments for SI joint pain focus on reducing pain and restoring the full range of motion in the joint. Pain is treatment with non-surgical options, only using surgery if the pain persists. 

Common treatments are:

  • SI Joint Injections – Cortisone injections are used to reduce pain and calm inflammation. They can relieve pain for several weeks or months. 
  • Physical Therapy –  Physical therapists create a specific program focused on your pain and discomfort.  Their goal is to help you restore your quality of life, get back to doing your favorite activities, and manage your pain daily. Physical therapy trains your body to strengthen the ligaments and joints. 
  • Pelvic Brace – A supportive brace is helpful if your SI joint is loose. Wearing a brace that tight helps reduce inflammation and supports your painful joints. 
  • Heat or Ice – This at-home pain reliever is a great way to temporarily reduce pain, tensions, and inflammation to the joint. 

Doctors may recommend multiple treatment options until they find a combination that works for your pain. Pain is different for everyone, so it’s important to find a doctor who creates an individualized treatment that fits your needs and lifestyle. 

The team at Progressive Pain Management can help you reduce SI Joint Pain in a way that fits your lifestyle. Fill out the form below to get in touch with our team today.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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. 

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

November 16, 2023
Treating Rotator Cuff Injuries

Rotator cuffs are a group of tendons and muscles that allow your shoulder mobility. These cuffs also help in stabilizing your shoulder. Additionally, rotator cuff injuries vary greatly from one another, and the symptoms may also vary. 

Some of the most common injuries may include bursitis, rotator cuff strains, and tendinitis. These injuries can range from severe to mild. If you’re an athlete or a sportsperson who uses their rotator cuff quite frequently, then the most likely injury you may get is tendinitis. That’s because overuse of these muscles and tendons can lead to inflammation. Most basketball players, tennis players, and painters fall in this category. 

rotator cuff injuries

How to Treat Rotator Cuff Injuries

You may experience rotator cuff strain from accidents, falls, and other sudden movements. Typically, most acute injuries involving the shoulder can lead to a partial tear or even a complete one in the tendons. Moreover, overuse can also cause this type of strain. 

As for bursitis, this is inflammation in the bursa. These fluid- filled sacs between your bones and tendons can be inflamed for various reasons, including degenerative use. 

Can You Treat a Rotator Cuff Tear or Strain at Home? 

Home remedies can help you get relief from rotator cuff strain. However, it’s still important to visit your doctor if your symptoms persist for longer than a week. Your physician can help determine the severity of the injury, the type of rotator cuff injury and come up with the right prescriptions for you. The most common solutions are: 

  • Using over-the-counter medication for pain
  • Using an ice pack on the area (hot packs are good too)
  • Using a sling to avoid motion on the shoulder and resting it
  • Injecting cortisone to reduce inflammation
  • Exercising the affected shoulder

You should also note that depending on how bad the injury is, you may need surgery. However, the timing of the surgery will not necessarily affect the outcome. 

What Are the Symptoms to Look Out For? 

As mentioned before, while some types of rotator cuff injuries are generally characterized by immediate and intense pain, some may take longer to manifest. You may have a tear without even knowing it until it gets worse. Even so, there are tell-tale signs of such injuries. They include: 

  • Difficulties with moving the affected shoulder due to pain
  • Difficulties in sleeping or lying on the affected shoulder
  • Trouble reaching the back of your shoulder
  • Pain in the area from time to time
  • Inability to use full range motion of your shoulder
  • Weakness in the shoulder which gets worse over time

Can You Prevent a Rotator Cuff Injury? 

Injuries caused by an acute injury cannot easily be prevented as a most result from accidents. However, it’s possible to prevent other forms of injuries by exercising your shoulder frequently to improve its range of motion or simply strengthen it. You can also try taking frequent rest breaks if your occupation involves overusing your shoulder muscles. 

Final Thoughts 

Rotator cuff injuries can sometimes lead to excruciating pain. Although home remedies and preventive measures can help ensure you don’t strain your tendons, sometimes surgical intervention is necessary to help correct the tear. For more information, feel free to fill out the form below.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

November 8, 2023
Finding Pain Relief from Hip Injections

Arthritis is a disease of the joints that can cause chronic, or long-term, pain. The hip joint is particularly prone to this condition because it bears much of the body’s weight. Hip pain can also be caused by an injury to the hip, although this is less common than arthritis as a cause of discomfort in the area.

For some patients with milder cases of hip arthritis or an injury that isn’t too severe, taking analgesics (pain relievers) or anti-inflammatory medications orally might be sufficient relief. However, for more serious cases, hip injections are often necessary in order to achieve the desired pain relief. In addition, these injections have a beneficial effect on the underlying condition that is causing the pain in many cases.

hip injections for pain relief

Hip Injections for Effective Pain Relief

Hip Injections: Diagnostic vs. Therapeutic

Hip joint injections may be classified as either diagnostic or therapeutic. A diagnostic injection is meant only to determine whether a particular patient will benefit from receiving a therapeutic injection at some point in the future.

There are several reasons why doctors might perform this procedure prior to giving a patient a therapeutic injection. First, it can help confirm that arthritis or another medical condition is indeed present and that it is not being caused by some other problem. Second, if the diagnostic injection is given after an injury has occurred but before there has been time for the injury to heal, it can determine whether or not the injury is likely to respond to a therapeutic injection.

If the hip joint does indeed appear suitable for receiving a therapeutic injection, doctors will typically wait several months before giving one in order to allow the patient time to recover from the diagnostic procedure and give them time to consider their options.

Benefits of These Injections

Hip injections are particularly beneficial because they can provide long-term relief for people suffering from this painful condition. Unlike oral analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs, which must be taken regularly over an extended period of time in order to achieve any benefit, most patients enjoy immediate pain relief following the injection. For particularly severe cases, this can mean several months or even years of added quality time with friends and family before eventually succumbing to the inevitable degenerative effects of osteoarthritis in this joint.

Potential Risks

Fortunately, only minor risks are associated with hip injections in general. The numbing agent may cause some temporary numbness or tingling around the site where it was injected; however, this side effect usually subsides within a few hours at most.

Very rarely, patients develop an infection following their injection, but this is also quite uncommon given how few people actually experience it. Even if they do get an infection, it will typically be no worse than a typical sore throat and will typically respond to antibiotic treatment.

Hip Injections: Pain Management Strategies

In most cases, a hip injection is only needed once (or at most twice) in order to provide relief for months or even years. However, there are other strategies that can be used in conjunction with this treatment or as an alternative when necessary. For example, many people often use heat and ice packs in order to alleviate their pain before an injection is even necessary.

When this does not provide enough relief for a particular individual, there are many oral analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications that can be used in addition to or in place of injections. These include both over-the-counter and prescription drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen.


Hip injections are quite safe and effective in the vast majority of cases. However, they do not work for everyone. In rare cases in which they do not work, there are many other treatment options that can be used instead.

If you would like to discuss additional treatment options or if your problems persist despite receiving a previously performed hip injection, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Progressive Pain Management by using the form below:

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

October 26, 2023
Treating Lower Back Pain with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a treatment approach that combines techniques to help people identify and correct faulty patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. The goal is to increase function and reduce pain.

A Brief History

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy was developed in the mid-1970s by Dr. John Sarno, a clinical professor of rehabilitation medicine at New York University School of Medicine. It is based on his belief that most lower back pain results from unconscious emotional factors, particularly feelings of stress and anxiety in the muscles of the lower back and abdomen.

According to Dr. Sarno, when people unconsciously repress feelings or emotions they often experience physical symptoms in the body as a consequence of the unconscious mind acting to protect them in some way.

cognitive behavioral therapy for lower back pain

Treating Low Back Pain with CBT

He believes that most people who develop lower back pain have repressed anger toward someone else or themselves, which he calls ‘core beliefs’. Core beliefs are often formed in childhood and are the result of unresolved emotional conflicts. The pain creates fear, further suppressing emotions, resulting in a vicious cycle.

Dr. Sarno’s approach focuses on getting patients to become aware of these unconscious emotions and how they affect their physical well-being through persistent pain. He teaches people to reinterpret the pain in a positive way, as a sign that they can now initiate the healing process.

How Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Works

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy takes place in six to eight weekly sessions, each lasting an hour. The first session is about education and explaining how pain might develop. The remaining sessions are spent discussing memories in the patient’s life that may be linked to the pain, identifying repressed emotions, and working out strategies to deal with them.

The interactive sessions aim to help patients become aware of patterns that can trigger their pain, such as poor time management or expectations set too high by family members. They also explore how a patient’s thoughts and emotions affect the sensations in the lower back. A key part of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is becoming aware of ‘early warning signs’ so they can be acted upon before pain becomes a problem.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain focuses on the mind-body connection and how emotions affect physical health, partially through stress hormones such as cortisol, which have been linked to chronic pain.

The Approach’s Value

In some cases, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain permanently reduces or eliminates pain. In one study, 78% of people with chronic lower back pain reported that treatment was successful and they were able to return to work.

A review of research found that the approach was effective for chronic lower back pain, but not acute low back pain. In addition to treatment sessions, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain encourages people with lower back pain to keep a daily diary. This helps them become more aware of their thoughts and behavior patterns that may be contributing to or exacerbating the pain.

When to Seek Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain

People who meet the following criteria would likely benefit from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain:

  • Have experienced pain in their lower back at least once a day for the previous three months.
  • Have been unable to take medication or engage in physical therapy because it hasn’t worked for them in the past.
  • Do not have a severe, progressive illness that could be causing their lower back pain.

Patients with the most severe pain and functional disabilities may need additional medication, acupuncture, and physical therapy.

Final Thoughts

Chronic lower back pain is a prevalent and costly condition. People with chronic lower back pain must receive effective treatment that focuses on self-management or self-care measures.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Lower Back Pain may be an effective intervention for this group of people. Still, the approach works best when both patient and therapist are committed to participating in all sessions without exceptions.

If you suffer from chronic back pain and want to learn more about this approach, contact Progressive Pain Management to discuss your treatment options.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.