Living with chronic pain, you understand how debilitating it can be. From making it difficult to work to keeping you from enjoying family and social events, there may be times you feel desperate for relief. The good news: You are not alone. Chronic pain affects 1 in 5 people in the United States, according to a National Institutes of Health estimate, yet relief is elusive to many. The better news: Treatment options, such as neurostimulation therapy, have been shown to help control pain so you can live the life you want. Neurostimulation therapy can sound intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Read on. Understanding Chronic Pain Chronic pain is pain that persists longer than 12 weeks, according to the National Institutes of Health. While the original source of the pain may be known, such as a sprain or injury, sometimes the body doesn't turn off the pain messages to the brain even when the original source is gone. In a case such as this, your doctor may diagnose you with neuropathic pain. The American Chronic Pain Association defines neuropathic pain as a 'complex, chronic pain state' resulting from a malfunction of the nervous system following an injury or illness. This type of pain is described as a sharp, intense or shooting pain. Due to its complexity, neuropathic pain is difficult to treat and often doesn't respond well to standard pain medication. Pain is an individual experience, so what works for one person may not work for another. Diagnosing the cause of your pain can be a challenge. It's important to work closely with a pain specialist to identify your condition and find the treatment or combination of treatments that works for you.