Pain is a feeling triggered in the nervous system. Pain may be sharp or dull. It may come and go, or it may be constant. You may feel pain in one area of your body, such as your back, abdomen or chest, or you may feel pain all over, such as when your muscles ache from the flu.

Pain can be helpful. Without pain, you might seriously hurt yourself without knowing it, or you might not realize you have a medical problem that needs treatment. Once you take care of the problem, pain usually goes away. However, sometimes pain goes on for weeks, months or even years. This is called chronic pain. Sometimes chronic pain is due to an ongoing cause, such as cancer or arthritis. Sometimes the cause is unknown.

Fortunately, there are many ways to treat pain. Treatment varies depending on the cause of pain. Pain relievers, acupuncture and sometimes surgery are helpful.

The Facts:

  • An estimated 40-80 million Americans live with chronic pain.
  • Chronic pain has no time limit, many times has no apparent cause and serves no apparent purpose.
  • Most often, migraines affect people between the ages of 15 and 55.
  • Many people have a family history of migraines.
  • Migraines are more common in women.

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