This February on Arizona Pain, you can read about new developments in medical thinking, and how they’re impacting the types of treatments available to patients with chronic pain.

One area of monumental change is opioids: it’s a hot topic, particularly with record rates of people overdosing and sometimes dying from taking these dangerous drugs.

With sky-high addiction rates—even among pregnant women—the medical community is finally taking note of something we’ve known for awhile here at Arizona Pain: opioids are dangerous. And the research doesn’t even show they’re effective for the majority of chronic pain patients.

This February, you read about how the pills became so widely used despite a shortage of medical evidence that they work and learn how doctors are responding to the frightening, but growing, opioid epidemic.

This February on Arizona Pain, read about efforts to curtail the widespread opioid epidemic.

Meanwhile, the federal government is also responding with efforts to restrain the opioid crisis. Read about the initiatives happening now on both the federal and grassroots levels to keep people safe and away from addiction.

Arizona Pain doctors feel strongly about the efforts to help people manage pain without the use of dangerous narcotics. That’s why we devote our efforts to helping patients heal with the most minimally invasive treatments possible.

And we’re dedicated to treating the whole person. Our doctors aren’t the type who will see you for five minutes, write you a prescription, and send you on your way. Instead, we take the time to understand the complex nuances behind your pain and connect you with other ways of improving quality of life, from acupuncture and massage, to chiropractic and biofeedback.

Sometimes the best way to feel good is to do good. That’s the idea behind February’s coverage of Random Acts of Kindness Week.

Have you ever done something simple, like held a door open for someone, and felt how good it feels to spread kindness? It might even inspire the recipient of that kindness to continue spreading the love.

That’s the premise behind Random Acts of Kindness Week. If you need some ideas for simple, easy acts of kindness or want to read about how much kindness truly does matter, don’t miss this month’s article.

The recipient of kindness could be a stranger, but it could also be someone you know, particularly if that someone is struggling because of a chronic illness or serious disease like cancer. A random act of kindness like making that person a cup of tea or delivering a new book to read could make that person’s whole day.

Meanwhile, cancer rates continue to rise, but organizers of this month’s World Cancer Day—which took place on February 4—hope to spread the positive message that the world already has the tools needed to save more lives: they just need to be implemented, particularly in developing nations. Organizers hope to rally the globe to make the changes necessary to save lives.

If you missed this year’s World Cancer Day, it’s not too late to read our blog post about it, get informed, and share the knowledge.

February also marked African American History Month, a time to honor the successes made by African Americans and also highlight the community’s struggle to gain equal rights. Today, despite legal equal rights, African Americans suffer needlessly from chronic pain because of difficulties accessing health care. Little-understood cultural differences related to health also complicate the matter.

Disparities in health care treatment for chronic pain don’t stop at racial divides; a gender divide also exists. Don’t miss our important report this February on the different, and unequal, ways men and women receive treatment. And just as cultural differences complicate the racial divide, biological differences muddle the gender disparity, making the picture less clear than one might think.

Staying informed is the best way to begin to create change, so be sure to check out these special reports. Change often happens at the grassroots level, one person at a time.

Knowledge is power. Stay informed about chronic pain issues and help make social change.

Grassroots action does more than implement social change—it changes the business landscape too. Organizations like Kickstarter are making it possible for fledgling companies or people to raise capital to build projects.

A few of the projects we’ve highlighted this month are of particular interest to the chronic pain community. Affordable home floating therapy tank anyone?

One way for people with chronic pain to increase quality of life is to take charge of your health. You can’t control how you feel or when and how pain strikes, but you can do everything in your power to reduce the risk of a bad pain day.

We’re all about patient empowerment here at Arizona Pain, and that’s why we devoted blog space this February to teaching you how to be your own best advocate. Our ultimate guide to pain management gives you a new way to think about the monumental task, as well as ways to better prepare for doctors appointments. You’ll also find tips to communicate more effectively with your health care team.

Take charge of your health with this month’s ultimate guide to pain management.

Part of that take-charge attitude is staying abreast of new treatment options. We’ve got you covered this February with five new therapies that may leave your jaw dropping. You might never guess what the future has in store, including a totally new way of looking at back pain.

It’s wonderful to learn about new treatments, but sometimes it’s just as helpful to read about the tried-and-true, particularly if they’re new to you. That’s why we created this month’s primer on steroid injections, a fast, powerful road to pain relief. If you’ve ever wondered what these injections are and how they work, be sure to check out this month’s guide.

And if you’re looking for a treatment to help you manage pain from a car accident, we have an entire post this February on the common injuries linked to car accidents and the treatments we generally offer to patients.

Thanks for reading Inside Pain. We appreciate you being here.

What was your favorite article this February on Inside Pain?

Image by Alejandro Pinto via Flickr

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