The body begins to wake up. The sense of laziness disappears. The attitude toward a healthier lifestyle begins to flow.

Those who live with chronic pain can use Spring as “a new awakening” to deal with chronic pain and return your body to a state of a more peaceful living.

The following are five tips to manage chronic pain

1. Keep moving (gradually and steadily)

Our body was built to move, and we need to understand that not all aches or soreness are causes for concern. Use the good weather to get out and walk. Fight the temptation to sit on the couch and watch TV.

2.Knowledge is power

Spring into awakening the mind. Simply knowing the basics of how our brain and nerves work and their role in pain, can decrease your chance of developing chronic symptoms. There are various techniques and alternatives to opioids that one must learn about and consider .

3. Focus less on the image

Take pain into your own hands! While most of us want a diagnostic image (ie, x-ray, MRI) to tell us “why we hurt,” images actually give us little information about what’s causing pain. What shows up on an image may or may not be related to your symptoms. Once imaging has cleared you of a serious condition, your medical specialist will help optimize your quality of life with a combination of prescribed exercise, hands-on care, and education.

4. Addressing depression and anxiety helps.

Your chances of developing chronic pain may be higher if you also are experiencing depression and/or anxiety both of which are more prevalent in winter. Along with professional help, the sun and the outdoors can help relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety.

5. Spend time with a physical therapist

If you experience an injury, or develop the onset of pain, seeing a physical therapist early on can help address and manage your symptoms. Physical therapists are masters of wellness, and through exercise, hands-on care, and patient education. Accessing care early by a physical therapist reduces your chances of developing chronic symptoms

Follow Spring and the examples of many plants. “Come out of the dirt, bloom and produce pretty flowers!”

Adapted from APTA web site by Christian Campilii, P.T., D.P.T.