Chronic pain can be a debilitating condition that significantly impacts one’s quality of life. In some cases, it may result from accidents or past injuries.
However, determining whether chronic pain is truly the result of an accident can be a complex process that requires careful consideration and medical evaluation.
Seek medical evaluation
The first step in determining the cause of chronic pain after an accident is to seek a thorough medical evaluation. Consult with health care professionals who specialize in pain management or rehabilitation. They can help diagnose the underlying issues contributing to your pain.
Document your injuries
Maintain a detailed record of any injuries you sustain during the accident. This documentation can include medical records, X-rays, MRI scans and photographs of your injuries. Such evidence can provide valuable insights into the source of your chronic pain.
Follow a treatment plan
Adhere to your health care provider’s recommended treatment plan. This may involve physical therapy, medication or even surgery, depending on the nature and severity of your injuries. Following your treatment plan diligently can help determine whether your pain is accident-related.
Keep a pain journal
Maintaining a pain journal can be a useful tool in understanding the progression and triggers of your chronic pain. Record the location, intensity and duration of your pain episodes, as well as any activities or factors that exacerbate or alleviate your discomfort.
Consult with specialists
Almost 21% of U.S. adults have chronic pain, and 6.9% of adults experience high-impact chronic pain that severely restricts what they are able to do each day. Depending on your injuries, it may be necessary to consult with specialists such as orthopedic surgeons, neurologists or chiropractors. These experts can provide additional insights into the cause of your chronic pain and offer specialized treatments.
Consider second opinions
If you are uncertain about the origin of your chronic pain or have received conflicting diagnoses, seeking a second opinion from another qualified health care professional can provide clarity and potentially uncover issues.
Continuously monitor your progress in managing chronic pain. Document any changes in your symptoms and discuss them with your health care provider. This ongoing assessment can help identify whether your pain is improving or persisting.