Your Practice Transformation Companion

Monday, August 1, 2016

Living with Chronic Pain

Pain is defined as being chronic or long term when it lasts longer than 3 to 6 months, or beyond the normal healing time of an injury. This chronic pain may be mild to severe and doesn’t go away. It can take both a psychological (anxiety, stress, depression, anger, withdrawal) and physical drain (fatigue, sleeplessness) on the person experiencing it. There is also evidence that chronic pain can suppress the immune system, putting the person suffering at further risk of compromise. With almost 100 million Americans suffering from chronic pain, there is much that needs to be done with effective treatment that addresses the psychological as well as the physical aspects.

The most common sources of chronic pain include back pain, injury/trauma pain, infection, disease, headaches, joint pain, tendinitis, and pain affecting the shoulders, pelvis and neck. Muscle or nerve pain can also develop into a chronic condition causing chronic pain. Some people even have chronic pain in the absence of past injuries or damage to the body. Chronic pain can decrease the body’s production of natural painkillers, and with negative feelings associated with it, can increase the levels of substances in the body that amplify the sensations of pain. This causes a vicious cycle of pain for the person suffering.

What can be done?

Since there is a proven mind and body link with chronic pain, effective treatments need to address the psychological as well as the physical aspects. Some treatments that used to be called “alternative” are now considered “mainstream” and there are a lot of options out there. Just remember to do your homework and discuss any additional pain treatments with your health care professional.

Some of the current pain treatments (besides medication and surgery) include relaxation/stress reduction/distraction techniques, exercise, guided imagery, chiropractic manipulation, acupuncture, marijuana, behavioral therapy, hypnosis, biofeedback, music therapy and massage.

Another option that incorporates many of above methods (relaxation/stress reduction/distraction techniques, exercise and guided imagery) is the Stanford University Chronic Pain Self-Management Program. This is a 6 week, 2 ½ hour workshop that helps people learn how to self-manage their pain. Classes are highly participative, where mutual support and success build the participants’ confidence in their ability to manage their pain and maintain active and fulfilling lives.

Subjects covered during the 6 weeks include:
·         techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, isolation and poor sleep
·         appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance
·         appropriate use of medications
·         communicating effectively with family, friends and health professionals
·         nutrition
·         pacing activity and rest
·         how to evaluate new treatments

Please join us at our upcoming FREE workshop or recommend it to your family and friends. 
Country Creek Medical Building
4986 N. Adams Road
Rochester, MI 48306

Every Thursday from 1:00 PM – 3:30 PM for 6 weeks
September 22, 2016 through October 27, 2016

To register:


Contact: Carla at 248.310.8476 or email at