Geriatricians like Dr. Brandon Verdoorn see the wide range of effects of chronic pain on older patients. Minor, short-lived pain can be managed at home with ice, heat or over-the-counter medication.
If you have severe pain, persistent pain or pain that affects function, you should see your health care provider to determine the underlying cause and develop a pain management plan. That might mean physical therapy, exercise, massage or acupuncture.
Medication strategies often are used, too — typically starting with lower-risk approaches like acetaminophen and topical medications, and reserving higher-risk medications for more difficult cases.