Many smokers turn to their cigarettes not just for comfort, but also for relief when dealing with chronic pain. But while nicotine might induce some short-term pain relief, over time, it can worsen your pain. So how can something that delivers some form of pain relief actually make things worse? Allow our experts in pain management in St. Augustine, FL, to explain.
The nicotine in tobacco is excellent at tricking the body into feeling better—at first. Smoking triggers the release of chemicals—such as dopamine—that can give you a satisfying sensation. You may not realize that the same tobacco is impairing the delivery of oxygen-rich blood to your tissues and bones. That decrease in blood and nutrient flow can cause degeneration, fatigue, and slower healing. That means that smoking is just going to make those painful conditions you are trying to fight worse over time.
In addition, smokers are rarely the best candidates for potentially life-changing treatments. That means even if there are some solutions available for the chronic pain you are dealing with, if you are smoking, you may not be able to see any benefits from them.
So, if you are dealing with chronic pain of any sort and want to begin seeing some relief of any kind, it is time to put down those cigarettes and pick up the phone to call a pain management specialist. There are better, healthier ways to treat your pain.