Are you or your loved ones suffering from more body pain during this pandemic? Many of us have experienced some sort of body pain this year due to long hours spent working from home, side effects from our vaccine doses, or even from long-existing chronic pains. But how do you cope with pain from working from home?
Are My Body Aches and Pains Normal?
You may be surprised to know that you are not alone in experiencing body pains. Just this year alone, some of the most common Google searches for body aches are: “Why does my chest hurt”, “Why does my lower back hurt”, “Why does my neck hurt” and more.
In particular, Google searches for lower back pain saw its peak in 2021 compared to the past five years.
While you may have gotten used to the back pain from long hours of work or study or even the back pain that has been haunting you for the past few years, it is important to note that pain is not normal and you should not be living in pain.
While you may think that experiencing such pains are common or just a ‘small matter’, we are here to make it clear that experiencing pain is no matter to sweep under the rug. Untreated or undertreated pain can progress to chronic conditions and result in depression, irritability, and disruptions in sleeping and eating, and the loss of mobility.
Pains From Vaccinations
You, along with many others, may have experienced muscle aches in your shoulders or arms after receiving a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Experiencing pain for one to two days is normal as your body develops immunity. However, prolonged aches and unnatural pains in other parts of the body might be a sign that your body is not reacting well to the vaccine.
Here are some common side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine:
1. Pain at the injection site
4. Muscle Pain
6. Joint Pain
7. Fever for no longer than two days
You should consult a doctor if the post-vaccination pains last more than two weeks.
Chronic Pains From Existing or Past Conditions
Individuals with past or existing conditions may also experience aggravated pains as the vaccine may trigger the immune system to flare up old ailments, pain conditions, or illnesses.
An example for this would be: If a Fibromyalgia patient in remission took the vaccine, he/she would experience a pain flare caused by the vaccine. This applies to any other vaccines such as flu shots or pneumococcal vaccines.
Work-from-Home Causing More Pain?
This is most likely due to your sedentary lifestyle, longer working hours, and incorrect sitting postures you take while you are working from home.
As the pandemic has locked us into our own homes and shifted our workspaces to our homes, many of us have adapted to working from home and developed sedentary lifestyles. What many of us don’t realise is that being cooped at home or having inactivity for long hours are some factors that contribute to stiff muscles and poor blood circulation.
This is further amplified by the fact that most of us are stuck in our seats while staring at our laptops all day. Whether you are a working professional or a student trying to focus on your online lessons, undesirable sitting positions while you are working may cause pains such as neck, shoulder and/or lower back pain.
For some of us, working from home means having to juggle between families and work at home and may experience more stress and anxiety; this may trigger more pain in different parts of our body.
As such, preemptive and proactive management of pain is necessary. Instead of slouching in your chair, ensure that you have enough lumbar support for your back. Lumbar support can be from either an ergonomic chair or something as simple as a cushion/pillow to support your lumbar area.
In order to ease the pain from working from home and keep the body healthy, you can also try making small changes to your lifestyle by including more frequent exercise and movements. Taking daily walks and stretching regularly are some ways you can take to keep your body active and improve blood circulation.
However, if pain still persists beyond 3 months after self-management relaxation techniques, you may need to visit a paincare doctor to find out what may be the cause of the pain.
How Can Paincare Professionals Help You in Your Journey to Recovery?
For common pains, some of us may turn to pain medications or traditional therapies like Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) tuina or acupuncture, and physiotherapy to receive some level of pain relief. However, if pain still persists or if it leads to the inability to perform normal activities of daily living, then these additional signs may herald more urgent attention to exclude other sinister causes of pain.
Medical professionals such as Paincare Doctors are trained to assess if the pain is acute or chronic through multidimensional pain assessment. If your pain extends beyond a few weeks, talking to paincare doctors can help you better find out and diagnose the root cause behind your pain.
Instead of enduring your pain and having to be on constant medication that offers slow or little results, consult a Paincare Doctor today to get diagnosed and receive proper treatment.
Live A Pain-Free Life
Long-term ignorance of pain can often lead to devastating consequences. Instead of a lifetime of having to ‘endure’ your pain, it is important for you to understand, acknowledge and get your pain treated.