What Should I Do When My Chronic Pain Becomes Unbearable?

Coping with chronic pain is bad enough, but when it flares or suddenly becomes much worse, then what? What should I do when my chronic pain becomes unbearable?

Man suffering from extreme chronic pain.

Your First Thought

When chronic pain becomes unbearable, your first thought might be to head to an emergency room or call 911 for help. Maybe that is the right thing to do if your pain has reached a level like never before. Simultaneously, if none of the regular pain medications or remedies are helping, the ER might be the best place to get help.

If you are experiencing new symptoms like fever and nausea, or if you are unable to cope with the physical and emotional pain, it makes sense to go to an emergency room.

Your Second Choice

If you decide you want to deal with your chronic pain without an ER, there are some remedies you can try at home. Some might be new for you.

Let It Out

Here we mean let your emotions come to the surface. When pain is relentless, you may want to scream or cry. Then just do it! Getting those feelings out can serve as a way to calm down a bit and focus better on how to manage the pain. Don’t beat yourself up about it because it may just be what you need to deal rationally with your situation.

Try Some Old Remedies Again

When you first had this chronic pain, you probably used ice packs or heating pads to lessen the discomfort. Hot and cold usually give you short term relief, but it’s better than nothing.

Utilize Some Distractions

You might be surprised but watching a movie, looking at pictures from your last vacation, calling a friend to chat can help you forget about how much pain you are in for a while.


If you have a partner, ask them to give you some gentle massage. Friends may be willing to do the same. There are also mats available to order which will give you some warmth and massage.

Talk to Yourself

Yes, talk to yourself and give yourself positive messages. These thoughts can just be in your head or said aloud.

  • This pain won’t last much longer.
  • I will be fine.
  • I can deal with this.
  • I am strong enough to get through this. It is temporary.

Do some deep breathing as you say or think of these encouraging words. This can relieve the stress you are dealing with and help to actually ease some of the pain.

Some other ideas include:

  • Doing some light stretching and exercise to release the natural endorphins to improve your mood. This will help reduce pain.
  • Cutting back on alcohol. This will help you sleep better.
  • Join a support group. Ask Palm Beach Pain Institute to recommend one.
  • Stop smoking.

Contact Palm Beach Pain Institute at (561) 499-7020 for an appointment in Palm Beach, FL to identify the source of your chronic pain and for additional ways for managing your pain.


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