An excellent article, written by Travis Rieder, claimed, “Our obsession with a unidimensional pain scale and a medicine that can get us to zero – but with serious costs – has been a recipe for disaster.”
I really liked the idea presented in the article linking pain intensity to its influence over day-to-day life. Apparently, so did the Defense and Veterans Center for Integrative Pain Medicine in Maryland. They have just released a new pain scale based on these four considerations:
* one’s ability to engage in daily activities of choice
* stress level
More important than a rating of pain intensity (1 to 10) was the reflection of how the pain affected one’s quality of life.
I like this approach so much that I am going to shift the way I discuss pain with my clients. Rather than have anyone rate their level of discomfort as a numbered scale, I will ask them to rate how their pain/infirmity/injury has affected each of the above four areas. Setting functional goals based on ADLs (activities of daily living), stress levels, sleep satisfaction and moods will actually give us something concrete to work towards.
My first solution to reaching the above goals is, without a doubt, reflexology. Why? Because I know that reflexology can help reduce stress levels, improve sleep patterns and moods. Experience has also shown me that reflexology supports the body’s musculoskeletal system in relaxing and functioning without pain.
The article is short and well worth the read.