Smartphones and apps have opened an entire new way to do things in many aspects of our lives-even in the health domain. Most people often pay visits to physicians and doctors for chronic pain and discomfort, however many are now opting to use technology to help assist with pain management. Pain is very subjective, so apps that can help track and monitor the extent of the pain are helpful when relaying this information back to a physician. This helps them to more accurately diagnose and prescribe a treatment plan. Harvard professor Robert Jamison states, “Today the ratio is one pain specialist for every 10,000 patients, but mobile technology allows for easy time-effective coverage of patients at a low cost, offering significant opportunities to improve access to health care, contain costs, and improve clinical outcomes. Below are a few smartphone apps that are helping merge technology and healthcare.

My Pain Diary

This is an iOS app that can help patients keep a detailed record of information that they may need to share with their physicians. The app allows the users to log-in information like the type, trigger, and location of the pain. In addition to that, the users can upload photo attachments. It also loads weather feeds, as these can sometimes impact chronic pain sufferers. By collecting and gathering different types of data, users can note which factors trigger their pain. All this information is then sent to their doctors for analysis.

Manage My Pain

This is an Android application that lets the user log in their pain related information in the LOCATES methodology created by The American Pain Foundation. This includes pain Location, Other symptoms, Character, Aggravating factors, Time, Environment, and the Severity. It is logged using the standard 0-10 scale. This makes the data able to be easily evaluated by medical professionals.

WebMD Pain Coach

This app helps take a holistic approach to pain management and lifestyle. It provides a more personalized experience for specific health conditions in order to better understand pain triggers. It helps patients make healthier choices and set health goals. It also provides tips from physicians, heps track patterns, and shares progress with their doctor. This includes access to relevant articles, videos and slideshows.

Doctor on Demand

This app is a a multi-faceted platform that helps users connect with board-certified doctors from the comfort of their own home. Through these video-visits, users can get help for many common ailments. Doctors are able to diagnose and provide effective treatment plans, and even prescribe medication if necessary. It is by far one of the fastest and cost effective ways to get relief  from pain by professionals-without the wait time of a typical doctor visit.

These new smartphone apps can help track and monitor pain, physical activity, moods, triggers, and even side effects of drugs. They help determine the triggers of pain and can provide effective information for the user and their physician. Technology-based approaches to helathcare are considerably reducing pain levels and improving functionality for many chronic pain sufferers.