Tips on How to Be the Ideal Partner for Chronic Pain Patients

All About "Being There" For Others in Chronic Pain

Chronic pain has the ability to alter your lifestyle. This in return can cause mixed emotions to pile up onto the physical complications that you are already dealing with. For chronic pain patients, it is sometimes difficult to communicate and relate to others because their lifestyles are so much different.

If your partner is battling chronic pain, your relationship may take a strain during this period, especially in the beginning when your partner is trying to reestablish a comfortable way of life, integrated with chronic pain.

Here are a few tips you should keep in mind when you are getting involved in your partner’s pain management experience.

  1. It is important to remind your partner that they are not alone. Remember to establish that you are embarking on this pain management journey along with them. It is imperative that that you stand behind your words, especially since chronic pain patients are emotionally sensitive as it is. You can support your partner by attending their doctor’s or imaging visits, physical therapy sessions, and by being attentive to their progress. Your partner will then be at ease, knowing that you are at their side willingly.
  2. Guilt is a very prominent emotion that will plague your partner’s mind while managing their chronic pain. Chronic pain has the stern ability to limit one’s mobility, making old activities more challenging. Because of this, chores around the house, work, and recreational activities you may have done together may prove to be problematic. For previously active patients, their limited mobility may make them feel guilt because they are not able to contribute to the income or chores as they once did. Remember to uphold open conversations with your partner regarding this so their emotions do not bottleneck their ambitions.
  1. In order for your partner to regain their functionality and escalate their range of motion, the doctor will often suggest exercise as a key method. Exercise, however, can be challenging because it may prove to be painful or tiring. Your partner may lack motivation to do so. It should be your duty to act as their support and encourage them to improve themselves. That being said, exercising together may be a great way to spend time with each other while motivating one another. It is also important you keep an eye on your partner to make sure they are not overexerting themselves or becoming engulfed by frustration. A slow and comfortable pace is what will help them in the long run.
  1. There are a variety of health foods that can be of benefit for chronic food patients. Such foods include fatty fish, leafy greens, and whole grains. Along with this, there are many items chronic pain patients should avoid. Such chows include refined grains, processed groceries and sugars. Though your partner may be inclined to indulge on unhealthy comfort foods, it is important you motivate them to stay healthy in this field. A sacrifice you can make is by eating healthy yourself. Changing both of your lifestyles can help the chronic pain, your relationship, and your health.
  2. Your partner might be discouraged to explain their happenings to you. This is primarily because you may seem unapproachable. Do not take offense to this. Instead, encourage them to seek attention elsewhere. This can be done by either seeing a therapist or joining a chronic pain support group. Sharing experiences with others in similar situations may afford mental relief and the opportunity to get motivated by success stories. Accompanying your partner to these events can really brace your relationship because you will gain an understanding as to what they are experiencing.

    Chronic pain is a fracas of its own. It is important to stand by your partner’s side and egg them on from the sidelines. However, “babying” them will not help in the long run. Your goal is to be a stable rock for them to lean on until they reestablish a comfortable routine in which their chronic pain does not overshadow everything.

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