One statistically proven pain relieving modality available to chronic pain sufferers is heat

Living with chronic illness is a challenge for many people. Some estimates of people living with chronic illness range from 15 to 120 million in the U.S. alone. Others state that more than 1 in 4 people live with some type of chronic illness. Chronic illnesses are anything from back pain to asthma to lung disease. A chronic illness is any disease or ailment that has a lasting effect on the body. Chronic illnesses are not viral or contagious and may be hereditary or environmental. Causes of many chronic illnesses are unknown, but living with a chronic illness is difficult no matter what the circumstance. Chronic illnesses may, in fact, be the leading factor in workplace absences and definitely present the sufferer with incredible challenges in their personal, social, spiritual, and economic lives. No matter what the illness is, it affects the quality of life of the sufferer, their family, and those close around them. In most cases, there is not a cure for chronic illness; the challenge becomes one of coping and managing on a daily basis. There are a number of coping strategies available to those with chronic illness from medicinal, nutritional, natural, spiritual, and behavioral. The key is finding what works best for you and those around you. There is probably not one best strategy that fits, but rather a combination of modalities that help you live a full and joyful life.

One statistically proven pain relieving modality available to chronic pain sufferers is heat. Researchers in Japan conducted studies on sustained infrared heat on chronic pain sufferers once daily over a four­week period during hospitalization. Pain behaviour, self­rating depression reports, and anger scores significantly lowered over the four weeks. Researchers also found that after two years, 77% of chronic pain sufferers that experienced infrared heat therapy returned to work as compared to only 50% of those that did not (Masuda et al, 2005).

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