Chronic pain is often much more complex than acute pain, as both treating and understanding the pain can be very challenging. Despite this, there are many ways in which chronic pain sufferers can help manage their condition. One of the ways in which people begin to manage chronic pain is by understanding what it is. “Chronic pain” refers to pain that’s lasted for longer than 3 months, however the reasons for this can be very complicated. Sometimes this pain can be initiated by injury or illness, however this isn't always the case - chronic pain is also a diagnosis in itself. More information on the nature of chronic pain can be found in our resources section.
Chronic pain can impact on many different aspects of life: it can affect sleep, work, social life and even mood. In turn these can interact with and worsen our ability to manage our pain and increase its impact on us. This is something which universally affects us as humans, and in no way implies that our pain is psychologically generated or that we are mad.
To help manage pain better and improve quality of life, the Pain Self-Management Service offer a range of treatments. These include the Pain Self-Management Programme, as well as other approaches such as Mindfulness. Several approaches underly these treatments, including Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
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Pain Service Website, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Webmaster Dr J G de Courcy, Consultant in Pain Medicine and Anaesthesia
page updated 18/11/15