Published by Salisbury Post

Webster’s Dictionary describes “chronic” as “frequently recurring, continuing for long periods of time; affected by a disease for a long time.”

The same dictionary describes “acute” as: “extremely sensitive, sharp and quick.”

We all have suffered acute pain; a sprained ankle, root canal, broken bone. It is terrible pain, but we know it will eventually go away.

I personally suffer from chronic pain as a result of bad genetics, botched surgeries and severe osteoarthritis. Daily I take over-the-counter medications to help with pain, as well as arthritis. These medications keep my pain at mostly, an even level of 5-6 with 10 being as bad as it can get. Having to wear my prosthetic leg daily on a back that has gone through four surgical procedures is what causes the majority of my pain.

My day starts at 11 a.m., and usually I am back in pajamas sans my prosthetic by 7:30 p.m. Not a long day. But any longer a day will cause the constant pain I fight to flare to the point my daily medications do not work. It is then that I have to take an opioid.

However, as I’ve been told over numerous years, if you wait until the pain is really bad, the opioid won’t work; take it before the pain gets bad. So I live in a catch-22 situation. If I take the pain medication before the pain is bad, I will have a long, pleasant and productive day. But then I will probably be accused of being a pain pill addict.