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Coping As A Parent With Chronic Pain

February 8, 2021

February 8, 2021

Parenting can be tiring and challenging enough without also having to cope with chronic pain. Below are just a few ways to make parenting easier while also suffering from a chronic pain condition.

Get your pain diagnosed

Chronic pain can come in all forms from regular headaches-to-back pain-to-achy joints. If you haven’t already got the pain diagnosed, it could be worth talking to a doctor. Chronic pain could be the result of an underlying condition, a disease, or an injury. Finding the cause will help you to overcome it.

Communicate your pain effectively to your kids

Your pain may affect your ability to do things for your children such as carrying them, playing with them, or even doing simple household tasks. When the pain is bad, you need to be able to communicate this effectively with your kids so that they know to back off. With very young kids, you may be able to tell them simply that ‘mommy/daddy hurts’. As they get older, you can start to explain it in more detail and let them know which activities you cannot do. Let your kids know what they can do to help so that they don’t feel helpless.

African Americans report higher levels of clinical pain as well as greater pain-related disabilities than white Americans.

– NIH

Find ways to relieve the burden

Your partner or a family member may be able to look after the kids if the pain is particularly bad so that you can get the rest you need. If this is not possible, find ways to look after your kids without exerting yourself too much. Have easy meals on hand and plan ways of entertaining your children without having to get up too much such as watching a movie, doing a puzzle, reading or doing some arts and crafts (older kids should be able to occupy themselves and it may help to teach them to cook a few easy meals).

Find the right form of pain relief

You may be able to get painkillers prescribed to you by a doctor if your condition is particularly chronic. This could include morphine or medical marijuana as detailed at this blog. Over-the-counter medication could also be a solution. If you would simply prefer to relieve pain naturally, there could be many other options worth exploring such as massages or a hot bath. Talk to your doctor to see what works best for you.

Find ways to prevent pain

Most people with chronic pain conditions experience flare-ups that are caused by certain triggers. For instance, migraines are often caused by specific triggers such as caffeine, dehydration, sleep changes, or certain foods – by avoiding these triggers, it may be possible to prevent migraines or prepare for them in advance. Even in the case of conditions where pain may be constant, there may be triggers that cause the pain to be a lot worse such as the wrong types of exercise, lack of sleep, stress, or poor diet. By making the right lifestyle changes, you may be able to keep inflammation at a minimum, and make your pain more manageable.



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Successful Black Parenting is proud to announce that we are bringing our readers more researched-based content written by the members of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) RESilience Initiative, which provides resources to parents and caregivers for promoting the strength, health, and well-being of children and youth of color. We will also feature their members who have contributed articles to Successful Black Parenting on our BackTalk podcast. Learn more about the RESilience Initiative at www.apa.org/res.

THE AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION'S (APA) RESilience Initiative

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