PAIN RESOURCES TO EXPLORE
Pain is a complex, and often misunderstood phenomenon. This small selection of pain resources may serve as a starting point in cultivating a deeper understanding of pain.
Pain & Me - Three-minute video from pain researcher and person with experience of persistent pain, Tamar Pincus. "It took me a long time to understand that acceptance was not the same as giving up or losing hope, but instead I’ve come to see it as a conscious decision to completely engage with life, including pain."
Tame the Beast - Five-minute video that provides a brief introduction to rethinking persistent pain.
Why Most People are Wrong about Injuries and Pain (Lars Avemarie) - this article provides examples from research studies that help us understand the complexity of pain, and how pain is not necessarily correlated to danger or tissue damage.
My Cuppa Jo - Changing Pain (Joletta Belton) - website designed by person with lived experience of persistent pain. "The posts below are about changing the experience of pain through pain science education, movement, creative expression, getting out into nature, communicating more effectively, being grateful, and loving and being loved. They’re also about demonstrating how we can live full, valued, meaningful lives, even in the presence of pain. And they’re for everyone."
Pain is Really Strange (Steve Haines) - some may find this short, entertaining book to be a helpful tool in learning more about pain. (Room to Rise is not affiliated with this website)
What we need to understand about pain
1. All pain is real pain. There is no such thing as imagined pain, or pain being in someone's head. All pain is real.
2. In 100% of cases, pain is an output from the brain. Our incredible brains are constantly processing information from our minds, emotions, and all over our bodies to decide if we need to experience pain.
3. Pain's role is to be a protector from anything that our brain processes as dangerous or potentially dangerous. If our brain obtains credible evidence that there may be danger, the result is pain.
4. Everything about who you are matters when it comes to changing your pain.
5. When treatment is directed at changing the pain system (which is controlled by the brain), pain can and does decrease, sometimes quite significantly. The suffering can stop and you can live with an improved quality of life.
6. The process of changing the pain system won't be easy. It requires patience and persistence, courage and commitment.
Adapted from D. Patterson, Pain Solutions, https://www.painsolutions.info/, 2021