Pain Awareness Month Part III: Get Informed


Central to Spine-health’s mission is to provide the highest quality, most accurate and complete information for people with chronic pain – focusing on chronic back pain, neck pain, and related conditions. We believe that trusted information - about one’s condition and full range of treatment options - is one of the most important ways to support people dealing with chronic pain.

Types of information Spine-health provides

People with pain have the ability to find information on Spine-health that is relevant to any stage of their specific situation. Before they know the condition causing the pain, they can learn about their symptoms – such as leg pain, arm pain, tailbone pain - and possible underlying causes of the pain, as well as treatment options.

Once a condition is suspected or diagnosed, patients can research more about the specific condition, such as osteoarthritis, herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, and more. These articles are designed to help the person in pain understand what causes the condition, what to expect (e.g. is it chronic or will it progress) and what can be done to treat it.

In addition, Spine-health also covers related topics that people with chronic pain often deal with, such as sleep issues, nutrition and depression.

Find information about area-specific pain and specific conditions in the Conditions Health Center.

Find information about treatments in the Treatment Health Center and healthy living in the Wellness Health Center.

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Multiple formats allow for better understanding

There is more than one way to learn or be taught since everyone’s body and brain are unique. Some people are better readers, while others gain much more understanding if they can see or hear what is being conveyed. Spine-health understands this difference and provides information in many formats to suit each individual’s preference. The main format used is written articles, but even writing can be varied and customized to have the most impact. The articles in the main section of the website are written by health professionals and peer-reviewed for medical accuracy. Spine-health also features an expanding library of over 75 videos on many of the most common back and neck pain topics, including exercise demonstrations, surgery and injection animations, and video explanations by doctors on important condition and pain topics.

There are also doctor advice articles where a single doctor answers a specific question with their own opinion of what might be causing pain or what treatment might be the best next step. The third type of written content is our glossary, where patients can see a quick definition of a term being used by their doctor or in a Spine-health article. This section is important because confusion due to complex terminology can lead to frustration and the loss of motivation to learn about what is causing pain or how to treat the condition. For people with chronic pain we also publish news and a blog so they can continue to learn new findings and information about back and neck pain. And perhaps the most popular venue, our vibrant, active discussion forums, where people dealing with chronic pain can share their experiences, frustrations and successes, all in a safe, supportive environment.

The information on Spine-health is commonly “prescribed” by doctors to their patients. Doctors find it helpful to refer their patients to information they trust on so the patients can absorb and process the information at their own pace. These patients often return to their next doctor visit with increased knowledge about their situation and with informed questions for the doctor.

Our information brings awareness for patients about their own conditions and treatment options. The articles, videos, tools, and forum can also be shared with caretakers, family, and friends so they can learn about what is happening in a patient’s situation. Having reliable information available is essential to promote awareness of chronic pain conditions and is one way we help during Pain Awareness Month and the rest of the year.

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