Regardless of the specific condition, coping with the painful symptoms of orofacial neuropathies can be a difficult and stressful experience. These little-understood conditions pose an added challenge as the uncertainty regarding the cause of the pain can make a sufferer feel a loss of control or helplessness.
Furthermore, the debilitating pain of a neuropathic disorder may prevent a patient from participating in enjoyable activities. As a result, it’s not uncommon that depression and anxiety develop in individuals with chronic neuropathic pain conditions.
Efforts can be made to reduce pain symptoms and maintain a level of normal activity. Relaxation techniques, meditation and engaging in enjoyable hobbies and activities that a patient is able to do may offer some relief from psychological stresses. By continuing to do normal daily activities as able while allowing oneself needed rest, a neuropathic pain patient can continue to feel in control of his or her life.
One suffering from a chronic neuropathic condition may also find mental relief by maintaining an active treatment regimen, including taking prescribed medications, performing physical therapy exercises and following other recommendations from a healthcare professional.
A mental health professional may also be able to help a patient manage feelings of anger or frustration caused by the condition. Support groups for sufferers can offer a community that can relate to the challenges posed by the condition, sharing advice for pain management and support based in personal experience and understanding. The Facial Pain Association is a support group for trigeminal neuralgia patients. Those with CRPS may find support in various groups such as American RSDHope. The National Pain Foundation has online forums and support groups for chronic pain sufferers.