“The pain makes me want to walk away from my own body.”
Feeling frustrated, disappointed, or angry at the battle you face daily with constant pain are common emotions for people with chronic pain. Depression is also common, as people grieve what chronic pain has stolen from their lives. Pain often brings with it other uninvited guests: struggles at work, school, and relationships; insomnia; anxiety; mourning the loss of spontaneity, freedom to move, and being able to take care of even the simplest of tasks. Pain can even bring in a distrust of your own body.
Chronic Pain Syndrome
Chronic pain syndrome describes the vicious cycle that often occurs when chronic pain leads to other problems (insomnia, depression, anxiety, etc.). The emotional and physical stress from these problems makes the pain worse. And the cycle continues…over and over again.
If you can relate to this, you are not alone. The Institute of Medicine estimates that at least 100 million adults suffer chronic pain and the American Academy of Pain Medicine reports that pain is more common in the US than diabetes, heart disease, and cancer combined.
Hope For Better Pain Management Through Counseling
Through the addition of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for pain you can achieve better pain management, less depression and anxiety, and improved sleep. You can also have better relationships. In the video below I discuss chronic pain management and why you, or your physician, might not know anything about it.
Because chronic pain syndrome is so complex, pain management is usually best approached by having multiple treatments at the same time, such as medication, surgery, rehabilitation/physical therapy, massage therapy, AND cognitive behavioral therapy (this is where I can help you).
Research on Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy For Pain
Multiple research studies have found that pain counseling helps reduce pain intensity, improve emotional and physical functioning, reduce pain-specific disability, improve health-related quality of life, and reduce medical visits and pain-medication use. These outcomes hold true for people who have chronic pain for a lot of different reasons (injury, fibromyalgia, arthritis, low back pain, muscle pain, etc.).
What Can I Expect from Pain Management Counseling?
Cognitive behavioral therapy for chronic pain is typically 10-12 sessions long. After treatment is complete, people usually come in once a month for booster sessions for as long as they need it. When you start counseling for pain management at Legacy Counseling Service in Broken Arrow/Tulsa, you can expect the following:
- I will ask you a lot of questions about what your pain is like for you, when and where it occurs, and what factors affect whether your pain is better or worse at a particular point in time.
- We’ll talk about your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that come with your pain.
- We’ll develop new ways to think about your pain and associated problems, and we’ll work on finding ways to solve the problems than can be solved.
- We’ll develop other ways to help you cope, such as using by distraction, formal relaxation techniques, and fun.
- We’ll discuss your sleep and implement and monitor strategies to improve your sleep.
- We’ll talk about lifestyle changes you might make to help you at work or school, or just your daily activity level.
- We’ll keep your other pain-related doctors in the loop so they can support us and we can support them in your overall treatment.
- We’ll bring your family and/or friends in (if you want) so they can get a better understanding of chronic pain and what they can do to support you.
- We’ll develop “flare-day” plans for you to use when you have a REALLY bad pain day(s)
I know you have been through a lot already with your chronic pain. You’re tired of looking for treatments that don’t really relieve the pain. If you have chronic pain, you know that the pain will probably never completely go away. But, if you are interested in learning how to manage your pain better and take back some of the things that pain has taken from you, call Christi, our intake coordinator, today at 539-777-1129 to schedule your appointment.