It is becoming increasingly clear that sensitisation plays a role in many different chronic pain disorders such as low back pain, neck pain, headaches, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, headaches, arthritis and many more.
The conditions that lead to these types of chronic pain are not associated with the spinal cord
or injuries to the central nervous system. They involve injuries of the peripheral nervous system which lies outside the brain and sp
inal cord. It is believed that changes in the peripheral nervous system can lead to changes in the central nervous system which in turn lead to chronic pain isolated to the area of the original injury.
It has been suggested that there are multiple factors, including biological, environmental and physiological causes which lead to the development of this type of chronic pain.
A prior history of physical and, or, psychological trauma, anxiety and depression are predictive of the onset of chronic pain in later life - several large studies have investigated how emotional factors can lower pain thresholds and how pre-existing anxiety towards pain can be related to increased pain sensitivity. It is believed that if the nervous system is already sensitised from emotional factors at the time of injury it can interrupt tissue healing times and leave the sufferer with pain long after the tissues have healed.
Sleep problems are a consequence of chronic pain conditions but research suggests that poor sleep quality may be a predisposing and maintaining factor in the development of chronic pain.
Has your injury been hanging around for a bit longer than it should? more painful than it should be? Is it affecting your sleep? Schedule a visit with us at The Osteopathic Centre to see how we can help.
See more articles on our Instagram page here