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Understanding Pain Better
It is very important to understand pain, and more importantly, learn what you can do to alleviate and stop it.
Information About Pain:
- All pain is 100% REAL
- All pain is unique to every individual.
- Pain can exist without any damage to your body.
- All pain experiences are a normal response to what your brain thinks is a threat.
- The amount of pain you experience does not necessarily relate to the amount of tissue damage in your body.
- The danger message of pain is sent to and processed throughout the brain.
- If your brain concludes that you are in danger, and that you need to take action, it will produce pain as a defence mechanism.
- Thoughts, beliefs, emotions, and past experiences are always involved and contribute to the pain response in varying amounts.
- The alarm system in our bodies becomes more sensitive over time when pain persists beyond three months.
- How you understand and cope with pain affects your pain. The more you understand about how your pain system works, the less threatening the situation becomes. Your brain will therefore respond by producing less pain.
A key element to dealing with persistent pain is to understand why your “hurts won’t harm you,” and that your nervous system now uses pain to protect you at all costs.
If you haven’t done so yet, take a look at the YouTube video, Understanding Pain: What To Do About It In Less Than Five Minutes. Another great video to watch is Tame The Beast.
How You Can Change the Sensitivity of Your Nervous System:
- By being patient and persistent, you can use graded activities to gradually increase your function and involvement in life. Look to The Pain Truth, and Nothing But by Bahram Jam for guidance.
- By purposefully seeking out activities that produce danger-reducing chemicals, like laughter and doing fun things with people who have a carefree outlook on life.
- By looking at your diet and lifestyle to see how they may be contributing to your pain state (link).
- By mastering your thoughts, beliefs and attitudes to help plan your return to normal life. The research shows that it can work! Start with a gentle type of exercise that will get you moving but also calms your nervous system.
- The information presented here is taken from Explain Pain by David Butler & Lorimer Moseley (2003). We recommend reading the book, which is available at amazon.com or noigroup.com. We also recommend perusing Dr. Moseley’s blog, www.bodyinmind.org for more helpful information on pain science, along with some very interesting scientific discoveries about pain.
Other Great Resources for Pain Education Include: