October 2019 and March 2020 were the official months when the world got to know about the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The influenza pandemic last occurred in 1918, and after over 100 years, the world was yet again shocked by the announcement of a new pandemic. According to researchers worldwide, the Covid-19 disease caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2 has originated in Wuhan, China.
When the pandemic first started, only a very few symptoms were known, so the world was not in a frenzy. But by the passing of time, a bunch of symptoms was discovered. Cough, cold, fever, and other upper respiratory symptoms started presenting, and the virus also hits the whole body hard. The disease has literally forced the world to a halt, and millions of lives have been lost so far. The virus has recorded over 5 million deaths all over the world, and active cases are in hundred million. The old-age population is the worst affected in the first wave and they raised the issue of Chronic Pain. Though chronic pain is common with some medical conditions, it needs specialized care anyhow.
Why Did The Older Population Got Hit Hard?
Generally, people over 60 years of age are considered the older population. They are more prone to catching the disease because their immune system might be compromised, or some patients have comorbidities. The virus easily gets into the body and starts affecting the lungs, resulting in shortness of breath. Fever turns so high and dry cough makes it more difficult. Proper treatment for the disease is still under research, and that makes it tough for both doctors and patients to manage the symptoms. The older population is advised to take all necessary precautions to stay away from disease.
Other Effects Of Covid
If you can feel the fever, you can treat it. Studies have shown a jump in mental illnesses among patients with the onset of the pandemic and the social regulations mandated by it. Being quarantined for a couple of weeks makes a person isolated from society, and it can affect their mental health. Both physical and mental illnesses must be treated with proper care. Counseling will help patients understand the issues involved, and cope up with the stress.
How Is Chronic Pain Managed?
The process of management of chronic pain is quite challenging with Covid-19 disease. New safety measures include wearing masks outdoors, washing hands frequently, and social distancing. It has changed the dynamics of viral infection & treatment within the health care sector. Online consultation is the new and safest way of treatment for both doctors and patients.
Technology is coming out with solutions that can help smoothen treatment plans remotely. New applications are being introduced with modified features. These applications allow patients to reach a doctor nearby in a few seconds via video consultancy and get quick advice. There must be no delay in the treatment, once the doctor prescribes a set of medications. Chronic conditions may show negative impacts and result in strong pain perception for the patient. Pain may be experienced by any age group or gender, which makes day-to-day functioning difficult.
Some new ways of managing chronic pain are:-
- Assessment of the nature of pain.
- VAS, NPRS, and multidimensional assessments.
- Neuropathic diagnosis.
- Regular screening of lungs.
Awareness Among Healthcare Workers
Healthcare workers are more prone to catching the disease, as there is no past history of the disease and no presence of antibodies in healthcare workers. They should be aware of the everyday symptoms within the patients, and also constantly monitor themselves for any symptoms. Patients with diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, etc., are at more risk to catch a severe disease. They are already under medication for such diseases, and the COVID-19 treatment can bring some new side effects. So the healthcare industry must stay attentive and responsive to come up with efficient solutions. The healthcare industry has a huge responsibility on its shoulders, and strategies for safe testing and treatments have already been developed. As healthcare workers are more prone to catching the disease, they are expected to follow specified protocols regarding Covid-19 treatment and symptoms management.
In the light of the pandemic, managing chronic pain is an issue worth talking about. The researchers are giving their best to come up with the most effective treatment plan for relieving and managing pain. Proper self-care will save you from both chronic pain and the virus itself. Social distancing and maintaining strong immunity are the two top ways to make oneself safe. Focus on improving your immunity with the help of a balanced diet and regular physical activity like yoga. Remember that the disease not only causes mental and physical problems, but it also drains you financially! Stay safe and strong.
PainPathways is the first, only and ultimate pain magazine. First published in spring 2008, PainPathways is the culmination of the vision of Richard L. Rauck, MD, to provide a shared resource for people living with and caring for others in pain. This quarterly resource not only provides in-depth information on current treatments, therapies and research studies but also connects people who live with pain, both personally and professionally.