What is Chronic Pain?
While acute pain is a normal sensation triggered in the nervous system to alert you to possible injury and the need to take care of yourself, chronic pain is different. Chronic pain persists. Pain signals keep firing in the nervous system for weeks, months, even years. There may have been an initial mishap—sprained back, serious infection, or there may be an ongoing cause of pain—arthritis, cancer, ear infection, but some people suffer chronic pain in the absence of any past injury or evidence of body damage. Many chronic pain conditions affect older adults. Common chronic pain complaints include headache, low back pain, cancer pain, arthritis pain, neurogenic pain (pain resulting from damage to the peripheral nerves or to the central nervous system itself), psychogenic pain (pain not due to past disease or injury or any visible sign of damage inside or outside the nervous system).
Chronic pain is pain that lasts longer than at least 3-6 months. There are several criteria of, sometimes 3 months, usually 6 months. Anyway: the pain cannot easily be cured. It is persistent or variable and can often not be explained (anymore) by a tissue damage somewhere in the body. For some patients it will stay for the rest of their life.
More facts and figures relating to chronic pain can be found here.
Bio-, psycho-, social
Pain is recognized as a bio-psycho-social phenomenon for several decades now. That means that pain has physical, mental and social aspects. In the information and treatments almost all attention goes to the physical and psychological factors of pain.
And although the recognition of the bio-psycho-social model is a fact, it is a missed opportunity that the social part is neither faced by therapists nor is it mentioned in books and on internet.
It is here that there is really missed a great chance to make the life of a person with pain, ánd that of her people around her or him, a little easier.
Your physical problems will have a considerable impact on your mood. You can be angry, or sad. You can find yourself anxious, frustrated, or scared. Maybe you even feel all of those at the same time. Within the process of your ailment, you’ll have good days as well as bad days, and it won’t necessarily coincide with the ups and downs of your emotions.
Support for chronic pain
‘Support for chronic pain’ and ‘Coping with chronic pain – a team effort’ will only focus on the social factor of pain, the consequences of the pain for the social life and the relations of the person with pain, as well as for the people around him or her. We truly believe that here is a fairly simple and inexpensive way to gain an essential profit. As the biological, psychological and social aspects of chronic pain go hand in hand, we’ll also give you tips and advice for your Pain Self-Management.
Five minute video:”Understanding chronic pain”: http://bit.ly/1uWHiGN
Having chronic pain is very hard. Chronic pain patients give the very lowest rating to the quality of their daily lives of patients of all illnesses. In other words: lower than cancer-, m.s.-, diabetes-, depressive and other patients rate the quality of their daily lives!
Let us make sure then, that every person with pain will not only get the best information and education to self-manage their pain and the best possible pain treatment, but also will get all the support and help we can give them. We cannot afford to leave an essential part of the possibilities unused.
It is Anna Raymann’s mission to ensure that every patient gets the best tools to keep his or her relationships good and warm, and that his or her social network will be as large as possible, with the help of her website and books. In addition to that she will not forget about the partner and children of the chronic pain patient, and help them to be a ‘Strong Helper’, and keep their own health and life at the same time.