With over 350,000 applications available on the iTunes App Store, and thousands in the health and medical categories, it can be overwhelming to decide which ones to try. We’ve gone through hundreds and found our favorite applications for chronic pain and TMJ disorder patients.
1. Chronic Pain Tracker
Price: $free or $14.99 Rating: 3.5 Stars
Link to app
This comes in a free trial version (Lite) and a more robust version ($14.99).
- Record your pain level on a scale of 1-10, along with a description, comments, & medication usage
- “Paint” your pain level with colors on a body
- See how your pain levels have changed over time
- Export the results in PDF, XML, or CSV format to keep records or show your doctors
- Create your own description terms for your pain
- Build your own list of frequently taken medications
As I have said before, I think it is very important that you learn to notice trends in your health so that you can report changes to your medical team. This app could definitely help you keep track of useful information both for you & your medical team.
2. Muscle Trigger Points
Price:: $2.99 Rating: 4 Stars
This app contains information for about 100 muscles (note there are more than 600 muscles in the human body, so it definitely has room to grow). The trigger points are indicated by a blue X on the muscle, and in some cases you can click to learn more. All in all, this is a great app for reference. Next time your doctor or physical therapist is explaining a muscle group to you, have them point it out on this app!
They also have one to see the anatomy and muscles in more detail (without the trigger point information): http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/learn-muscles/id364894966?mt=8
Price: $Free Rating:
This is the premier app for learning more about medications, and by far the best application I’ve used to learn more about medications. You can also check interactions, see photos of pills to make sure you are taking the right medication, and find out more about over-the-counter drugs. A great reference app to have as a part of your arsenal.
Price: $1.99 Rating: 4 Stars
Many women have noticed that their pain increases around the time of their period. This app is a comprehensive calendar that helps track your period. I can see how this could be very useful for women who have menstrual migraines or increased pain at that time of the month. You can view graphs of your history and any data you’ve put in, and it even alerts you when it expects you may be getting your period. Neat! This can also come in handy if you are trying to conceive. You can even track your mood and symptoms like acne, backache, anxiety, and more.
Also by the same developer, iHealthTrax, which helps you record symptoms on a calendar (so if a doctor asks you, “When did the pain start?” you can refer to your calendar and tell him exactly instead of staring at him with a dazed look on your face!).
5. ICE – In Case of Emergency
Price:$.99 Rating: 4 Stars
Link to App
This is an essential app to have on your phone. It provides an emergency contact list so that if you ever get in an accident or can’t speak for yourself, emergency personnel can figure out who to call. You can also list allergies and medical conditions. For 99 cents, this is a no brainer – I’ve had it on my phone for years.
Price:$4.99 Rating: 3.5 Stars
Written by the father of a child with chronic kidney disease, this app helps you organize all of the medical information, appointments, medications, and other health information you juggle with a chronic illness. You can keep a daily diary of your pain level or medication usage/side effects, email a report to yourself (or your doctor), and record measurements (weight, or pain levels, for example).
7. Sleep Machine
Price:$1.99 Rating: 4 Stars
Link to app
Most chronic pain and/or TMJ disorder patients have difficulty falling asleep sometimes. This app has a dizzying combination of features, all designed to help you float off to dreamland. It includes an alarm (which you can program to wake you up with the songs on your iPod), plus 80 ambient sounds to help you go to sleep. Sounds like waterfalls, the ocean, gentle rain, a crackling fireplace, and even a vacuum cleaner (for those of you with babies, I’m sure you could find this useful!). A great app if you are staying in an unfamiliar hotel with sounds you aren’t used to. Plus, you can mix different sounds together to come up with your own mix!
What are your favorite apps? Let us know in the comments below!
[fblike style=”standard” showfaces=”false” width=”250″ verb=”like” font=”arial”]
Hi Stacy, Anne here, community manager intern at Livefyre. As a social media and start phone addict, I can’t wait to start putting some of these apps on my phone. I started developing TMJ-like symptoms during my last semester at school, and I’ve been trying to monitor them in periods of stress and transition. Using something like the pain tracker would help me a lot, and you’re right — the ICE app is necessary. I’m off to download! 🙂
@annedreshfield Thanks for the comment, Anne! Glad you’re here. 🙂 Make sure you take a look at the self-care tips, they will probably help when you’re stressed and/or in pain (definitely invest in a nice heating pad!): http://www.tmjhope.org/self-care/ Let me know if you have any questions!