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Does Anxiety Worsen Your Chronic Pain?

Does Anxiety Worsen Your Chronic Pain?
September 1, 2022 Tom Clark

Anxiety and chronic pain often go hand in hand. For those living with both conditions, it can be challenging to determine what’s causing what. Does anxiety make chronic pain worse? Or is it the other way around? In this article, we will explore the relationship between anxiety and chronic pain and discuss what you need to know in order to get relief from both conditions.

The Relationship Between Anxiety and Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is defined as any type of pain that lasts for more than 12 weeks. It can be the result of an injury, a health condition, or simply wear and tear on the body. On the other hand, anxiety is a mental health disorder characterized by persistent worry and fear. For many people, anxiety and chronic pain are two sides of the same coin.

Chronic pain can lead to anxiety as sufferers stress about how bad the pain will get, how long it will last, and how it will impact their lives. This growing anxiety then feeds into chronic pain, worsening it. Overall, this whole thing can create a never-ending loop of negative feedback, but it is possible to break free. In this case, it is best to consider visiting a specialist for pain management in Omaha to help you develop a treatment plan that works for you.

Tips for Managing Anxiety and Chronic Pain

1. Identify Your Triggers

The first step is to identify your triggers, and once you know them, you can start to develop a plan for how to avoid or manage them. For instance, if large crowds trigger your anxiety, you might avoid going to crowded places. On the other hand, if your chronic pain is aggravated by sitting for long periods of time, you might take breaks to walk around every hour or so.

2. Develop a Coping Strategy

No matter how well you avoid your triggers, there will be times when anxiety and chronic pain strike. That’s why it’s important to have a coping strategy in place. This might be something as simple as deep breathing exercises or listening to calming music. The important thing is to find something that works for you and that you can do at the moment.

3. Seek Professional Help

If you find that your anxiety and chronic pain are starting to take over your life, it’s important to seek professional help. A therapist can help you develop healthy coping mechanisms, and a pain management doctor can work with you to find the best way to treat your chronic pain. In addition, it will also help if you check out what to expect when visiting a pain management doctor, as it can give you an idea of what the process will entail.


Anxiety and chronic pain are two very different conditions, but they can often occur together. If you’re struggling with anxiety and chronic pain, it’s important to seek help from a health professional. With the right treatment, you can manage both conditions and improve your quality of life.