Talk about your pain
“There’s no reason to live with pain when we have the ability to control it,” says Carmen R. Green, MD, University of Michigan Medical School professor of anesthesiology. Filling out this worksheet is a good first step.
- Where it hurts:
- What time of day pain occurs:
- How many days of the week pain occurs:
- How long pain lasts (example: one hour, four hours, all day):
- How severe the pain is, on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 as no pain and 10 as the worst pain possible:
- What the pain feels like (aching, burning, throbbing, stabbing, pressure, etc.):
- What makes the pain worse?
- What makes the pain better?
- How does the pain affect your life? (your sleep, appetite, activities—the more specific you can be, the better)
- What medications (and dosages) you’ve used, and how they’ve helped:
4 steps to pain relief
- Report it promptly—the sooner you do, the easier it is to treat.
- Describe your pain so your doctor can pick the right treatment.
- Take your medication exactly as directed for the most effective results.
- Keep steady levels of pain medication in your body.