By: Kristen Sohlman, HBA, MACP (Candidate), RP
What is chronic pain? Chronic pain is pain that persists for three to six months or longer that impacts an individual physically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually. Chronic pain is common, is personal, is unique, and is experienced differently by each person that is coping with it. Ongoing chronic pain that is not managed well can impact many different aspects of life and often disrupts both sleep and mood. The challenge with chronic pain is it is cyclical in nature: pain creates tension, which results in physical inactivity, which results in more tension, resulting in more pain. Also, difficulties with sleep lowers one’s tolerance for pain and reduces their stamina in being able to manage pain, resulting in less energy, fatigue, and increased tiredness.
Chronic pain when not adequately managed can lead to depression, anger and anxiety. These feelings make coping with pain harder. This is why pain management and developing coping strategies for chronic pain is necessary.
What are some pain management approaches to consider?
Miller, G. (2015). Learning the Language of Addiction Counselling (4th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley
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