Using Pain Awareness Month to Understand and Treat Arthritis Pain

September is Pain Awareness Month and coping with pain can be one of the most difficult parts of living with arthritis. One of the most effective things we can do is teach patients to take their pain into their own hands. Educating them and helping them recognize what causes their pain will help them figure out how to appropriately manage it. Utilize this toolkit from and learn how to “break the pain chain” and help your patients start living their best life today!

Understanding pain.

Arthritis pain can greatly affect a patient’s life and create a vicious cycle of fatigue, depression, and stress. Knowledge is power, and by understanding pain and how it physically, emotionally, and mentally affects sufferers, we can empower patients to effectively manage it. Direct patients to start at and take the pain awareness pre-test. This is a short quiz that will successfully gauge how confident patients are in their ability to manage arthritis pain. There is information to help both them and you understand how to process and react to pain. They will learn that not all pain is created equal; there are different types of pain and it is important that they recognize these differences.  They will also learn about the nervous system, triggers of pain, and the emotions associated with it.

Different types of arthritis.

According to, there are more than 100 forms of arthritis. To understand and manage pain, it is essential that we know that not all arthritis pain is alike. The processes, sources, and types of pain vary. Here, we can gain a deeper understanding of the basic anatomy of a joint and the mechanisms of the pain, and in the end how to help.

Treating the pain.

Conventional treatments for pain are important, but there is more than one way to treat and manage arthritis pain symptoms. Patients will need to try several different treatments before they find a combination that works. To be successful, they will have to treat the underlying disease with medication while researching over-the-counter and prescription medicine for pain treatment. There are many helpful natural, alternative and physical therapies that have been proven to offer relief.

Start putting together your management plan.

To be able to put together the best plan, it’s important that these strategies are unique to each patient and their symptoms. It is essential that they have an excellent healthcare team to stand behind them. A quality team that truly listens will help them build a comprehensive plan to combat arthritis pain and preserve their quality of life.

Use these tips from to help patients develop a pain management plan and truly understand their pain. Encourage your patients to visit and together we can spread awareness and start to understand arthritis pain. If you have any ideas for pain management, please share them on our Facebook page.

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
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