Reasons Your Pain Won't Go Away January 30, 2018 12:04

What you don't know is hurting you.

One of only a handful of physicians in the country who is board-certified in Family Medicine and Pain Medicine, Gary Kaplan, DO, author of Total Recovery and founder of The Kaplan Center for Integrative Medicine, was able to apply his pioneering perspective to help answer one of the most difficult questions plaguing our country: What is causing my pain?


Inflammation, part of the normal repair process, may have gone awry

Cytokines are chemical messengers secreted by the body. They have effects ranging from inciting nerve repair to causing inflammation. In the case of chronic pain, we know that the microglia, which are the innate immune system in the central nervous system, are "stuck" in a mode where they continue to excrete predominantly inflammatory cytokines. Under normal circumstances, microglia will shift from producing inflammatory cytokines to making anti-inflammatory cytokines and call in other cells to initiate the normal repair process.

Balance is restored by eliminating all of the factors that caused the microglia to get turned on in the inflammatory state and then doing things such as meditation, exercise, getting adequate sleep, and using things such as low-dose naltrexone (LDN) and turmeric to get the microglia to go back to their resting state.


Allergies can make your pain worse

Anything that incites an inflammatory response in the body has a potential to spill over into the brain and worsen the inflammation in the central nervous system, as with fibromyalgia. The allergies are not the cause of the fibromyalgia, but something that is further aggravating it.

Your diet can cause inflammation

I would start by thoroughly looking at your diet and make sure there is nothing still in your diet causing inflammation. I saw one woman who is a vegan, and it turned out she was allergic to blueberries. For ongoing inflammation in the brain, turmeric may be helpful.


Your fatigue may be a symptom so don't ignore it.

Sleep is not a thing, but rather a series of different brain waves divided into stages 2, 3, 4, and REM. People who are deficient in 3 to 4 sleep will present with chronic pain. If you have sleep apnea, where you stop breathing at night, it can cause chronic pain. If you have restless leg syndrome, it can also cause chronic pain. A proper evaluation of the quality and amount of sleep is necessary for anyone suffering from chronic pain and depression.

A migraine problem isn't just in your head–it's in your nervous system.
Dehydration, alcohol, bright lights are all triggers that can cause migraines. The underlying cause of the migraine is an irritated nervous system. The nervous system is irritated because of an underlying inflammatory condition in the brain. The key to preventing migraines is to identify what it is that's causing the inflammation. I would start with an anti-inflammatory diet of rice, fish, chicken, fresh fruits, and vegetables.
Your body may be more responsive to alternative therapies

My mentor, Norm Shealy, MD, PhD, has been a pioneer in working with microcurrent therapy. He has reported very impressive success with a large number of pain conditions. We have not seen the same level of success in our patients, but we find that acupuncture can be extremely effective for a large number of pain conditions. But most commonly our treatments are layered, involving a number of therapeutic approaches, which works synergistically for a comprehensive solution. I also recommend meditation or yoga.