Living with chronic back pain can be nearly as difficult for loved ones as it is on the affected individual. It is difficult to see someone you care about in pain. You often feel helpless, but there are things you can do to ease your loved one’s discomfort and make functioning with chronic pain more bearable.

Educate Yourself

The best way to be a supportive ally for a family member with chronic back pain is to learn more about the condition. For example, if your loved one suffers from a herniated disc, keeping up to date on herniated disc treatment is one way to show support. When someone is suffering from a chronic condition, it can be exhausting just keeping up on the information they need to remain healthy. By voluntarily seeking out answers and new treatment options, you show support and help relieve some of the burdens on your loved one.

Be Available to Listen

Often, the person suffering from chronic pain doesn’t need anything other than to have someone listen to them. They may hesitate to share when they are in pain or having a rough day because they feel like they are always complaining. Letting them know that you want to listen and welcome hearing about the bad days as well as the good is an excellent way to show support.

Encourage an Active Lifestyle

You will need to take the advice of their healthcare provider for this, but encouraging a certain level of activity will probably help manage pain. They may feel frustrated because they cannot keep up the level of fitness they had before their chronic back pain developed, but you should encourage them to add any activity they can to their routine. Volunteer to take walks, join a fitness center, or participate in any other activities they want to keep them company and provide encouragement.

Take Care of Yourself

It is important not to underestimate your value to your loved one in managing their chronic pain. As they come to depend on you it is important to remember that you need to take care of yourself as well. A little time off can allow you to continue to provide support for your loved one.

It may not seem like these activities will do much to help your loved one. You will be surprised at how your daily encouragement and awareness of what they are going through can ease the mental toll of chronic pain. Providing support and encouragement will help your loved one through the toughest days.

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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