Diana Solares, Physical Therapist at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains the difference between acute and chronic pain. "It comes down to timing. Acute pain is something that happens very recently and it'll last anywhere from about three to six months," she says. Solares points out after the six-month point you are getting into chronic pain. The theory on pain shows there are inputs into the brain and then the brain processes the information. "Pain is actually an output of the body," she highlights.
Sometimes in extreme situations as a shark attack, people do not feel any kind of pain. Diana Solares, Physical Therapist at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains this happens because the brain is worried about survival, the body is just trying to survive at all times. Brian Betancourt, Exercise Physiologist at Baptist Health South Florida, says you have to think the brain is a company, it's got an executive function that tells whether the brain is in control or not. "Essentially when you're rubbing your knee or rubbing your head you are distracting it from that pain," he points out.
Brian Betancourt, Exercise Physiologist at Baptist Hospital South Florida, says it is possible to exercise at an old age. "If somebody has some knee arthritis, he can do something simple like stepping up onto a low box," he explains. Diana Solares, Physical Therapist at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, highlights arthritis is a lot of the time the reason why movement is so important, because it is necessary for the knee joint, for example. The way that knee gets nutrition is through movement.
Treating chronic pain is different from treating other types of pain. Diana Solares, Physical Therapist at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, says pain does not mean that your tissues are still hurt; at that point your tissues are most likely healed, but the nerves are extra sensitives to any kind of stimulus. Brian Betancourt, Exercise Physiologist at Baptist Hospital South Florida, points out patients have to understand the brain is only an output of the nervous system, so pain is not that the tissues are actually damaged.
Diana Solares, Physical Therapist at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, explains there are the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. The first one is involved in chronic pain and the second one would be when you are resting or digesting. "One of the easiest ways to tap into that parasympathetic nervous system is just to take nice deep breaths, because when you are with the sympathetic nervous system your breaths get shallower and faster," she recommends. This is a simple and great technique for pain relief.