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Managing Your Pain

Faster healing with pain control

Managing Your PainAt Kingman Regional Medical Center, we consider effective pain management a critical part of your care.  This is because well-controlled pain will speed your healing and recovery.

There are many ways to treat pain depending on your personal needs and preferences. Your healthcare team will observe how you respond to pain treatment and will make necessary adjustments to keep you as comfortable as possible.

To control your pain safely and effectively, it is extremely important for you to communicate with your healthcare team.

Tell us your history

Please let us know about your:

  • Previous experiences with pain and pain control— Tell your doctor about what types of pain control have worked for you in the past and what didn’t.  Make sure to mention if you have ever experienced an adverse reaction to a pain medication or treatment. 
  • Alcohol and drug use— Be honest with your doctor about any alcohol or drug use. This information is important for safely administering pain medications and will be kept strictly confidential. Also, tell your doctor if you are recovering from a past substance use disorder. Your doctor can plan for pain control that will reduce your risk of a relapse. 
  • Current medications— List ALL supplements, herbs, prescription, and over-the-counter medications you’ve taken in the past month.  Many substances can interact with pain medications.  Also, tell your doctor about any pain medications you take on a regular basis.  Your body may have developed a tolerance to their effects, which could require higher than usual doses to achieve adequate pain control.

Describe your pain

Pain is personal. The amount or type of pain you feel may not be the same as what others feel— even those who have the same condition. Since everyone’s experience with pain is different, it is important to describe your pain to your healthcare team as best you can.

Please let us know:

  • When it hurts— Please tell your nurse or doctor if you’re starting to get uncomfortable or if your pain medicine is not working. You may need more pain medicine or to switch to a different kind of medicine to get relief. Don’t try to ignore painful symptoms. This isn’t a time to test your pain tolerance or to try to just suffer through it. It is very important to manage your pain to help your healing process. 
  • Where it hurts— You may be surprised at where you’ll experience pain. It is common to hurt in areas not related to your condition. For example, after an operation on your knee, you may feel muscle pain in the neck, shoulders, back, or chest from laying on the operating table. Tell your nurse or doctor about all areas where you are experiencing pain.
  • How much it hurts— Only you can tell the level of your pain, so your nurses and doctors will often ask you to rate your pain on a scale of 0-10, with 0 meaning no pain and 10 meaning the worst pain you can imagine. Never downplay the pain— be as specific as you can in describing how you feel. This will help your healthcare team control your pain and assess which measures are most effective in keeping you comfortable. 
  • If you are experiencing uncomfortable side-effects— Tell your nurse or doctor if you are overly sleepy, constipated, nauseated, or experiencing other side-effects from the pain medications. Often, your doctor can order a different medication or dose to alleviate unpleasant side effects.