Cognitive behavior therapy for pain management


Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is an improved way of pain management that builds positive ways of interpretation of pain. The therapy adapts healthy and positive changes on thinking and responses to reduce pain and fatigue.

To have pain day after day that does not resolve, and what cannot be cured with medication, is a terrible feeling to experience.  Even following routine surgical operations the amount of pain experienced by a person does not simply relate to the operation type or the length of the incision – other factors such as past experience, age, sex, anxiety, fear and depression all have a bearing.

When pain persists in spite of medical treatment and prognosis, in chronic pain syndromes, the treatment therapy and pain management is more complex.

CBT re-enforces mood changes and bring changes to emotions associated with anxiety, depression, feeling low in mood, frustration, helplessness, sense of loss of control. CBT focuses orientation on thought (cognitive) and action (behavioral).

Series of planed rest for pain reduction ensures that the body pain does not turn to be a fatigue.

CBT is a therapy that is often used in therapy-medicinal and psychological to help people think in a healthy way. CBT can help focus and bring notice to the discouraging thoughts that make you feel bad. The worrisome thoughts are sometimes called irrational or automatic thoughts.

Chronic pain is difficult to treat. Although there are no cures, a combination of psychological and physiotherapy appears to provide significant benefits. Several factors contribute to fatigue and pain.  In essence, cognitive behavioral approaches aim to improve the way that an individual manages and copes with their pain, rather than finding a biological solution to the putative pathology.

Following adverse steps can increase the pain and fatigue associated with pain:

  1. Sudden activity after illness, results in feeling more tired and experiencing more pain, and then have to rest for longer.
  2. Resting too much for too long can result into more symptoms of pain and rest later.
  3. Prolonged rest brings in sluggishness makes it harder to get active again and increases fatigue.
  4. Prolonged rest affects the working of vital organs heart and lungs, nervous system, and muscles.
  5. Thinking about pain and fatigue can increase the drag.
  6. Experiencing mental fatigue that includes difficulty concentrating, difficulty retaining new information, getting easily distracted, poor understanding and poor short term memory.
  7. Tablets may cause side-effects, pain may avert sleep, and all these difficulties cause worry and low mood which worsens the situation yet further.
  8. 'Psychosocial variables', such as mood, stress (as noted by depression scores and anxiety levels) have a significant role in chronic pain.

All these factors co-relate to lead to experiencing stress.  Using CBT, you can learn to stop negative thoughts and replace them with helpful thoughts.

Helpful techniques include:

  • Planning and doing things differently.
  • Defusing techniques.
  • Focus of attention to healthy thoughts and self believe.
  • Goal setting followed up by time management and delegation of work.
  • Grounding techniques - When in stress look around you, what do you see, hear, smell, sense?  Hold a comforting object.
  • Monitoring and time logging for pacing activity. Make a box of items that remind you to use the techniques that help.
  • Rewarding your-self at small victories to aspire for larger solutions.
  • Physical exercise for fitness and well-being.
  • Problem solving.
  • Put on some music - sing and dance along, or just listen attentively.
  • Thinking differently in changed circumstances.
  • Thought challenging with logical assertions to arrive at clearer and concise valuation of situations.
  • Scheduling in rest and relaxation, fun and enjoyment, achievement.
  • These remedies may include medications, physical therapy, weight loss, massage, or in extreme cases, surgery.



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