NUHS faculty will be among several health experts sharing long-term solutions for chronic pain during the Midwest Pain Treatment Education Expo Aug. 13.
The expo takes place at the Hilton Hotel in Northbrook, Illinois and expert presentations will also be streamed live. Last year, the expo attracted over 300 attendees and over 2,000 live-stream viewers from around the world. Most attendees have severe chronic pain and conditions like diabetic neuropathy, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, fibromyalgia, and complex regional pain syndrome.
“The expo will provide a range of pain relief options beyond strong opioids, which are addictive and often leave patients in a sedated state,” said Fraser Smith, ND, NUHS assistant dean of naturopathic medicine.
At the expo, Dr. Smith along with Tursha Hamilton, ND, naturopathic clinician at the NUHS Whole Health Center in Lombard, will discuss deep wellness as part of their presentation titled, “Naturopathic Approaches to Good Health and Reduction in Pain.” Other presenters include pain and spine physicians along with physical therapists, who will discuss some of the latest advances in pain relief such as stem cell therapy, cannabis, ketamine infusion, and intravenous vitamin C.
Naturopathic medicine offers various modalities for pain relief including hydrotherapy, soft tissue manipulation, myofascial therapy, along with lifestyle and diet changes that can help lead to long-term pain relief. While effective, naturopathic treatments do not provide quick and easy solutions. When it comes to chronic pain, extreme self-discipline is required by patients to restore the conditions of health, according to Dr. Smith.
During the current opioid epidemic when doctors may be attempting to prescribe fewer opioids, alternative solutions are especially important. At National University, students study complex pain conditions in key courses of the curriculum. This training is especially valuable since, according to Dr. Smith, students can expect about half of their patients in general practice to have some sort of chronic pain issue.
“NDs are looking to respond to the opioid crisis and reach out to patients so they are aware of all we have to offer, particularly at our on-campus clinic,” Dr. Smith said. “In addition to naturopathic care, the NUHS Whole Health Center also offers other treatments for pain relief, such as acupuncture, cupping, chiropractic care, and massage therapy.
Tickets for the pain expo are free for pain patients and caretakers but registration is required. To learn more about the expo or to register, visit the 4th Annual Midwest Pain Treatment Education Expo page.