Does Pain Make You Tired?
If you have ever suffered from chronic pain, you may have wondered, “Does pain make you tired?” Fatigue is one of the most common complaints among chronic pain sufferers. That is because chronic pain and fatigue often occur together, and their connection can be a vicious cycle.
Many people believe that the term “chronic” refers to the intensity of the pain, but it actually refers to the duration. Chronic pain is classified as pain that lasts for over three months, and the pain level can range from mild to severe. This means that even a relatively mild pain can have severe negative effects on your health if you are suffering from it long-term.
Chronic pain can be caused by:
- Back problems
- Nerve damage
- Past injuries or surgeries
How Does Pain Make You Tired?
On average, adults need between 7-9 hours of sleep a night. While we sleep, our bodies are hard at work maintaining and repairing our cells, organs and tissues. Not getting enough sleep can weaken the immune system and increase inflammation in the body. Unfortunately, pain makes it difficult to get restorative sleep, making it harder for the body to recover and increasing stress levels. Both a lack of sleep and more stress can make pain feel stronger, and insufficient sleep decreases your pain threshold and tolerance. This makes it harder to manage your pain, which further disrupts your sleep, which keeps the downward spiral going.
Overcoming the Pain-Fatigue Cycle
The first steps in treating chronic pain are identifying and treating the underlying cause, reducing pain levels, and getting restorative sleep. It is not enough to simply treat the pain, because that is just treating the symptoms. As a functional medicine doctor, Dr. Minni Malhotra, MD, FAARM, ABAARM, can uncover the cause of your pain and treat the source.
Getting quality, restorative sleep is crucial to recovery. Practicing good sleep hygiene will help you get the sleep your body needs. Good sleep habits include:
- Going to bed at the same time every night and waking up at the same time every morning.
- Don’t drink caffeine after 12 noon.
- Avoid naps if possible, or restrict daytime naps to less than 30 minutes.
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine close to bedtime.
- Regularly engage in moderate, low-impact exercise – but don’t exercise within 2-3 hours of going to bed.
- Stop screen use – including laptops, TV, and smartphones – half an hour to an hour before bedtime.
- Establish a relaxing bedtime routine: take a warm shower, meditate, read a book, etc.
- Don’t lay awake for more than 20 minutes. If you find yourself unable to fall asleep after 20 minutes, get out of bed and do a quiet, non-stimulating activity until you feel sleepy, then try again.
- Keep your room dark, turning off any unnecessary lights. If you find yourself constantly looking at the clock to see how much time has passed, remove the clock.
- Keep your room at a comfortable temperature: it is easier to fall asleep in a cool room than a warm room.
Find Relief From Pain and Fatigue At Anchor Wellness Center
As a Board Certified physician in Family Medicine as well as Board Certified with the American Board of Anti-Aging and Regenerative Medicine, Dr. Malhotra can develop a treatment plan that addresses the source of your chronic pain, bringing you relief.
Call us today at (832) 246-8437 to schedule a consultation and find relief from pain and fatigue.