Chronic pain: for healthcare professionals

Patient information

The old-fashioned treatment for persistent pain, also known as chronic pain, was bed rest for weeks or months on end. We now know this is the worst possible approach. Exercise and continuing to work are key to recovery.

Forget resting - lying in bed for long periods may actually make the pain last longer because inactivity makes the body stiffen up, muscles and bones get weaker, sleep is poor and the pain feels worse.

A better approach to reducing pain is a combination of exercise, staying at work, physical therapy and/or painkiller.

You can read more about ways to manage chronic pain on the NHS website.

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