Supplements for Chronic Pain:
Vitamin and mineral supplementation represent an integral component in the treatment arsenal for chronic pain here at Natural Medicine & Rehabilitation. Along with other modalities that aim to decrease inflammation and the chronic pain response, appropriate supplementation targets root cause factors and supports tissue healing and repair in a variety of ways. The clinical use of supplementation for chronic pain as well as for other health concerns must meet certain standards to be effective. Such standards include therapeutic dose, which is the correct amount needed to generate a desired effect, bioavailability and purity.
Bioavailability represents the ability of the product to be absorbed in the blood, to reach target tissues and therefore to take effect. This is heavily influenced by certain components in the products as well as by the state of our digestive system. The more inflamed our gut, the less amount we will be able to absorb and the lower the desired effect. It is crucial that these factors are assessed by our doctors and certain measures to increase bioavailability are initiated concurrently with supplementation. At NMR we prescribe supplements that have met high standards of purity and have excellent bioavailability as demonstrated by rigorous scientific studies. Most patients are not able to assess these on their own and fall prey to trial-and-error methods and achieve poor results. Such practice not only leads to financial stress but adds on to a list of disappointments that chronic pain generates over time.
Moreover, the prescription of nutraceuticals is guided by specific bloodwork which our physicians order to expand their understanding of individual vitamin and mineral deficiencies that could be at the root of your chronic pain. One common example is vitamin D deficiency, responsible for chronic musculoskeletal pain and decreased ability of the body to heal and repair. For other patients, blood chemistry can reveal an endocrine disorder, such as thyroid dysfunction which also drives pain and inflammation.
Drug- supplement interactions are of concern for patient that are taking various medications. These are assessed and discussed with our patients when new supplements are introduced.
Supplementation is always utilized at NMR to augment therapeutic lifestyle changes such as anti-inflammatory diet, exercise, stress management that the patient is already implementing and never as a modality on its own.