In an acute stressful situation, for example, if you are alone in a dark alley, stress may actually ease pain. You may forget about your knee pain and would probably run to reach a safe place. In acute stress, the body is well equipped to block out pain but its response to long-lasting stress can be distressing like chronic pain.
It is today’s demanding lifestyle, which can cause a person to easily get stressed out by the pressures of work, family, and everyday life. These stressors not only drain you emotionally but can cause physical pain as well. Stress and pain are often closely related and both of them have an impact on the other. Several studies support the fact that depression, anxiety, being stressed out can increase pain. Persistent stress and pain can create a vicious cycle that sets the stage for chronic pain and chronic stress.
The connection between stress and pain is not completely clear, but it is well known that stressed-out people often experience headache, neck, shoulder, and back pain. This could be probably caused due to tension in the muscles or release of brain chemicals.
According to experts, pain is regulated by the nervous system and the brain has a major role in how we perceive pain. The brain probably tries to inhibit pain signals. But if you are stressed out, then the brain's ability to filter these pain signals is offset and perceived pain can be increased.
In many people, stress can be relieved by avoiding things that cause stress or learning how to cope with it, this can bring about pain relief. Many experts consider that to benefit from medications or other therapies for pain relief, a patient need to manage his or her stress.
There is still much to learn and understand about stress and pain. But one thing is well known; that for many people, relieving stress can be a powerful pain reliever.
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