Medical Equipment to Ease Your Pain
Living with chronic pain takes a lot of energy and effort. Sometimes the pain is like an anchor around your neck and drags you down into an abyss. Medications help to a certain point. Other treatments like massage therapy, acupuncture and biofeedback can also help as well. But did you know that medical equipment can ease the burden of chronic pain too?
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator) unit: This little electronic device that electrically stimulates the nerves can block pain signals in some situations. Readily available for purchase or rental, covered by most insurance companies, there is really no reason why you should not give this piece of equipment a try.
Walkers: If you have spinal stenosis and it feels good to lean on a shopping cart, a walker can really, really help improve the way you feel when you are up and about. Four wheeled walkers are for people that are very steady on their feet. Two wheeled walkers go at a little slower speed. And four-point (no wheeled) walkers provide the most stability of them all.
Canes: Those with hip pain, knee pain, ankle or foot pain should probably consider using a cane. This medical assistive device reduces the amount of workload on those painful joints. In turn, the pain may be less intense with improved ability to do what you want to do.
Raised Toilet Seat: If you experience low back pain or any type of leg pain, then you know how difficult getting off a low toilet can be. Just that effort can cause an increased amount of pain. The added height of a raised toilet seat makes it so much easier to stand up from the seated position.
Grab Bars: Bathroom safety is paramount when dealing with a disabling condition. Don’t try to grab onto a towel rack, you will just rip it off the wall and end up on the floor anyway. Properly installed grab bars give you something solid to hold onto in the bathroom in order to prevent falls.
Shower Chair: Again, bathroom safety cannot be over emphasized when you are living with a painful condition. With a shower chair, you are able to safely, confidently sit down while bathing. This extra degree of freedom provided by a shower chair will greatly improve your ability to live independently with less burden on you and others.
Hospital Bed: A fully adjustable hospital bed can improve your comfort and ability to sleep through the night.
Trapeze: If you have trouble getting in and out of bed or have trouble rolling over, this medical device called a trapeze sits above your hospital bed and gives you something to grab onto.
If you need any of these devices, talk to your local medical supply company. They will help you work with your doctor and your insurance to minimize the cost to you.
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Christina Lasich, M.D., wrote about chronic pain and osteoarthritis for HealthCentral. She is physiatrist in Grass Valley, California. She specializes in pain management and spine rehabilitation.