News on Pain Management in St. Augustine

Learn more about the latest medical advancements utilized at our spine and pain center in St. Augustine, FL. We’ll share the latest information you’ll want to know about how we treat chronic pain.

Read the latest news on pain management in St. Augustine below. We proudly serve patients in St. Augustine, Jacksonville, and the surrounding areas.

What to Do If You Think You Have Arthritis

doctor with patientIf you have begun experiencing consistent joint pain, you are probably concerned that you are developing arthritis. If you suspect you have this disease, here are four things you should do:

Pay Attention to Your Symptoms

When you suspect you have arthritis, take note of your symptoms and monitor any changes in how you have been feeling. Note the type of pain, and any other symptoms like warmth, redness, or swelling in the joint. Your notes can help your doctor diagnose and treat your pain. For tips on how to keep track of your symptoms, see our blog post about keeping a chronic pain journal.

Limit Self-Treatment

When you first develop joint pain, it can be tempting to head straight for the drugstore. There are a myriad of over-the-counter pain medications that you can buy. While these treatments may work short term, you will need to see a doctor to receive a diagnosis. Your doctor will be able to prescribe a treatment plan that helps in the long run. Also, some OTC pain relievers can cause stomach problems if used long term.

Consult a Doctor

If you suspect that you have arthritis, the most crucial step you need to take is to see a reputable doctor. Do not put off this step, because delaying treatment can cause further damage to your joints. Your doctor can provide you with an accurate diagnosis and customize a treatment plan specifically for you and your condition. Not every case of arthritis is the same.

Learn to Live Well with Arthritis

Arthritis is a diagnosis that can be hard to process. If you are proactive in your approach to dealing with this disease, it is possible to live well with arthritis. Learn what steps you can take to manage your arthritis pain naturally by reading our blog post about natural arthritis relief.

If you suspect you have arthritis, make an appointment with our pain management clinic for arthritis treatment near Jacksonville, FL. Call us at 904.800.7246 or schedule an appointment online.

Managing Chronic Pain with a Healthy Diet

woman with grocery bag full of vegetablesWatching what we eat is essential for many reasons. Maintaining a healthy diet reduced the risk of diabetes, obesity, strokes, heart disease, and more. For the millions of Americans suffering from chronic pain, what you eat can also affect your pain levels. While excess weight can put pressure on your body and cause pain, there are other negative impacts resulting from a poor diet that you may not be aware of.

Inflammation

One of the most significant symptoms of chronic pain conditions is inflammation. A diet that is low in fruits and veggies and high in sugar, fat, and salt can exacerbate the inflammation that is already in your body. If you suffer from joint or muscle pain, increased inflammation can significantly increase the pain you feel daily.

Dietary Changes

While it can be challenging to make drastic changes to your diet, there are some small changes you can make today. There is no need to adopt a strict diet regimen. Simply adding fruits and vegetables to your typical diet and making health swaps when you can go a long way towards helping you manage your pain. Another way to reduce inflammation is to keep a close eye on your sodium consumption. Reduce your salt intake and drink lots of water.

Find relief from your chronic pain when you book an appointment at First Coast Pain for pain management near Jacksonville, FL. Call our clinic today at 904.800.7246.or schedule your appointment online.

When to See a Doctor for Back Pain

back pain treatment Jacksonville flMany adults will experience back pain in their lifetime. Conditions like osteoarthritis, ruptured discs, sciatica, muscle strains, scoliosis, spinal stenosis, back injuries, and more can all be at fault for your pain. To get an accurate diagnosis and relief from your pain, you will need to see a doctor for back pain treatment near Jacksonville, FL.

When to See a Doctor for Back Pain

In many instances, back pain will only last for a few days or weeks. Many people experience episodic back pain that is not a huge concern. However, if this is the first time you are experiencing back pain, it is always good to go to the doctor to make sure it isn’t serious. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should see your doctor as soon as you can:

  • Persistent back pain lasting longer than a few days
  • Pain that wakes you up at night
  • Incontinence issues (bladder and bowel control)
  • Signs of infection like chills, fever, and sweats
  • Any unusual symptoms accompanying the pain

With the proper diagnosis and treatment plan, back pain can be managed and even cured. If you are experiencing back pain, call First Coast Pain today at 904.800.7246 today or schedule your appointment online. Our skilled and compassionate physicians are ready to help you start feeling like yourself again.

The Benefits of Medical Marijuana for Fibromyalgia

medical marijuana st Augustine flWhile the use of medical marijuana is controversial, there is a lot of research that suggests it can be very beneficial for patients who suffer from chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia. To understand how medical cannabis can positively affect those living with fibromyalgia, we need to take a look at the endocannabinoid system.

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

The endocannabinoid system can be understood by breaking it down into its components: “Endogenous” is used to refer to things within your body, and “cannabinoid,” which comes from the word cannabis and is used to refer to the parts of your body that react to cannabis. Our bodies contain natural cannabinoids, and some studies suggest that deficiencies in the endocannabinoid system can play a role in Fibromyalgia. The endocannabinoid system is involved in numerous processes that are impaired in fibromyalgia, including:

  • Metabolism
  • Immune Function
  • Memory
  • Pain Processing
  • Sleep
  • Stress Response
  • Temperature Regulation
  • The Autonomic Nervous System

How Medical Cannabis Can Benefit Fibromyalgia Patients

Studies done of medical marijuana users suggest that using cannabis can reduce pain, including the nociceptive pain that affects people living with fibromyalgia. It can also minimize stiffness, lower inflammation, enhance relaxation, and improve sleep. It can also improve the mental health of fibromyalgia suffers.

If you have fibromyalgia and are curious if medical marijuana in St. Augustine, FL, can work for you; make an appointment at First Coast Pain. You can reach our office at 904.800.7246 or schedule your appointment conveniently online.

What You Need to Know About Retinal Migraines

blue eyeA migraine is much more than just a headache and can manifest in different forms in different people. One relatively rare type of migraine condition is retinal migraine. Retinal migraines are a subset of ocular migraines. Where an ocular migraine affects your eyes, the retinal type only affects one eye. When you suffer from this type of migraine, you experience partial or full blindness in one of your eyes, along with other changes in vision. Let’s take a look at the symptoms, causes, and treatment options for retinal migraines:

Symptoms

Retinal migraines cause changes in vision, the most common being flashes of light (scintillations), partial loss of sight, and total blindness. These changes in vision usually occur for anywhere between a few minutes to an hour, with the headache and other migraine symptoms following soon after. In some people, these visual disturbances can last much longer, including through the headache phase.

Causes

Not much is known about migraines and their symptoms. One possible explanation for the visual disturbances in retinal migraines is vasospasm, which is a condition where the vessels supplying blood the retina narrow. Migraines are often brought on by specific triggers like stress, staring at screen for long periods, driving long distances, hormonal fluctuations, and even certain types of food and drink. Pay attention to what you are doing before a migraine hits and create a migraine profile to help you deal with triggers.

Diagnosis and Treatment

While there is no specific test for retinal migraines, your doctor can evaluate your reported symptoms and medical history to reach a diagnosis. They will often have to rule out other diseases that can cause visual disturbances first.

There are a few different ways to treat migraines, including preventative measures. Make an appointment with First Coast Pain to receive treatment, including BOTOX for migraines near Jacksonville, FL. You can make your appointment online or call us at 904.800.7246.

Tips for Dealing with Neck Pain

physical therapist correcting patient’s postureNeck pain can be challenging to live with, but there are a few things you can do to lessen your pain.

Seek Treatment

The first thing you should do when you start experiencing neck pain is pay a visit to the doctor. While some neck pain is temporary and will go away over time, it could be a sign of something else. Your doctor can give you a diagnosis and treatment plan that will help your neck pain go away much faster.

Correct Your Posture

Slouching while sitting or standing is one of the most frequent causes of neck pain, so working to correct your posture can cause your neck pain to decrease or go away entirely.

Sleep with Fewer Pillows

Your neck is made up of multiple bones that form a forward curve. Sleeping with multiple pillows causes your head to flex forward, which places increased stress on your neck. Using one pillow while you sleep helps support your neck’s natural curve as you sleep, which can result in less neck pain.

Avoid Looking Down at Your Phone

We’re not saying that you can’t use your phone – they’re essential these days, but you should reduce your use. When you look down at your phone, you are putting your neck in an extreme forward position, which can cause pain.

If you are suffering from neck pain, visit the capable physicians at First Coast Pain for pain management near Jacksonville, FL. We offer a personalized approach to pain treatment and multifaceted treatments that can include medication, physical therapy, and behavioral interventions. Contact us today at 904.800.7246 or make your appointment online.

What You Need to Know about Hemiplegic Migraines

migraine treatment Jacksonville flHemiplegic migraine is a rare condition that begins in childhood and can be very frightening to experience. The most distinctive symptom of a hemiplegic migraine is the motor aura, which results in paralysis or weakness in one half of the body. Other than the motor auras, hemiplegic migraine sufferers can also experience visual and sensory auras that are typical of a classic migraine. The duration of the auras in hemiplegic migraines tends to be much longer than a typical migraine.

Two Types

Hemiplegic migraines are split into two categories: familial and sporadic. Familial hemiplegic migraine (FHM) is caused by mutations on one of three genes: CACNA1A, on chromosome 19; ATP1A2, on chromosome 1; and SCN1A, on chromosome 2. These genes are inherited from a parent with the dominant gene. If one parent has a form of FMH, their child has a 50% chance of getting it as well.

Sporadic hemiplegic migraine (SHM) is much less common and shows up in people without a family history of the condition. The genetic mutations responsible can happen simultaneously.

Treatments for Hemiplegic Migraine

Treating hemiplegic migraine can be tricky. Medications like triptans, ergotamine derivatives, and beta-blockers can increase the risk of stroke in patients with acute hemiplegic migraine. However, there are solutions out there for you. When you visit First Coast Pain for migraine treatment near Jacksonville, FL, our physicians will provide you with a personalized solution for your hemiplegic migraine conditions. Make an appointment online today or call our clinic at 904.800.726.

The Benefits of CBD Oil for Chronic Pain

medical marijuana st Augustine flThe use of cannabis as a treatment for pain dates back to ancient China, but it has seen a surge in popularity in recent years. Many chronic pain sufferers are now turning to CBD oil as an alternative treatment. CBD (cannabidiol) is a cannabinoid – a compound that is found in the marijuana plant. You may be aware of THC, another cannabinoid that has psychoactive effects. Unlike THC, CBD does not produce a “high” and is therefore seen as ideal for medical use. Here are some of the benefits of CBD:

Reduces Inflammation

CBD has been shown to reduce inflammation, which is a common cause of chronic pain in conditions like osteoarthritis and IBS. Reduced inflammation makes these conditions much more manageable.

Promotes Better Sleep

People with chronic pain often experience disrupted sleep patterns. CBD encourages sounder sleep, which can help make chronic pain more manageable.

The Endocannabinoid System

The endocannabinoid system is a complex system of cell-to-cell communication that contributes to brain functions like mood and memory. It also affects how we experience pain. There is some evidence that CBD has an effect on this system, which may be why some people find it useful for treating their pain.

Decreased Side Effects and Dependency

Many people are turning to medical cannabis to avoid the side effects of traditional painkillers. With some stronger painkillers, there is also the risk of developing a dependency on it, which is something you will not find with CBD.

First Coast Pain offers personalized, multi-faceted treatment for your chronic pain, which includes medical marijuana in St. Augustine, FL. Find out if CBD is right for you when you make an appointment at our pain clinic today.

Four Types of Chronic Back Pain

back pain treatment Jacksonville flBack pain is one of the most common health issues facing Americans today and can stem from a wide variety of different problems. Chronic back pain is diagnosed when you experience pain for more than three months – regardless of the cause. Here are four different types of chronic back pain.

Mechanical – This type of back pain includes problems with the spine and surrounding muscles including scoliosis, spinal disc problems, and muscle tension.

Injury – An injury to your back can cause temporary pain while it heals, but some patients experience back pain long after an injury is fully healed. Traumatic injuries like fractures or repetitive back strains over time can cause this type of back pain. If your job requires heavy lifting, you are at risk for chronic back pain.

Diseases and Conditions – Some diseases and other conditions can result in back pain both indirectly and directly. Conditions like arthritis and even pregnancy can result in chronic back pain.

Infections or Tumors – Tumors on the spine can put pressure on the spinal cord and cause nerve pain. You may also be experiencing chronic back pain if you suffer from a bone infection like osteomyelitis.

Seek effective back pain treatment near Jacksonville, FL, when you contact First Coast Pain at 904.800.7246. You can also book your appointment with our experienced and compassionate physicians online.

Using Medical Cannabis to Treat Endometriosis

medical marijuana st augustine flEndometriosis is an incurable condition where uterine-lining cells grow outside of the uterus, which thicken and shed just like they would during your period. This tissue then becomes trapped in your body and can create cysts, scar tissue, and bands of fibrous tissue known as adhesions that can cause your pelvic tissues and organs to stick together. This disorder causes severe abdominal pain, pain during intercourse, painful urination and bowel movements, heavy periods, and a host of other unpleasant and painful symptoms. Medical cannabis can be used to provide people living with endometriosis with relief from their symptoms.

Cannabinoids Reduce Inflammation

Endometriosis is what is known as a chronic inflammatory disease. THC and CBD, two cannabinoids found in marijuana, have been shown to reduce the body’s inflammatory response. This can help reduce cramping and pain in endometriosis patients.

Anti-Proliferative Effects

A 2010 study showed that cannabis can help prevent the growth of endometrial tissue, which is the root cause of endometriosis symptoms.

Pain Relief

Cannabis has long been used as a treatment for chronic pain because it has natural pain-relieving properties that can be extremely helpful when dealing with endometriosis.

Reduces Nausea and Diarrhea

Other symptoms involved in endometriosis are nausea, diarrhea, and other digestive problems. Marijuana possesses antiemetic properties, which can help treat these symptoms.

First Coast Pain offers alternative treatments for your chronic pain, like medical marijuana in St. Augustine, FL. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment and begin treating your endometriosis pain.