PSYCHOLOGICAL THERAPY TO TREAT PHYSICAL PAIN
At Avella Injury and Pain Management, we pride ourselves on understanding the whole patient. We know that pain is complex and has many aspects leading to our patients’ perception of pain. We offer a range of evidence-based psychological treatments that are suited to each patients’ individual situation. If your main pain specialist recommends you have adjunctive psychological therapy, you will undergo a range of assessments and a session with the psychological pain specialist, who will determine, together with you, what therapy type is needed. At Avella, we offer the following psychological adjunct therapies for pain:
Together with your therapist, you will discover what aspects of your life are stressful and make your pain feel worse. Your therapist will listen to you in a supportive way and give you a safe space in which to express your feelings and emotions around difficult areas of your life. This tension release will empower you to make changes in your life, to enable you to deal with your stressors more efficiently and to make positive changes.
INTERPERSONAL AND SUPPORTIVE PSYCHOTHERAPY
This type of therapy will help you deal with your problems more effectively. Many patients with chronic pain experience extreme emotional distress at certain times. Supportive therapy is a form of talk therapy where a patient will be allowed to express themselves freely. Your therapist will listen to you and then offer some important advice. This type of therapy is very sympathetic and is designed to be encouraging. The idea is to provide emotional support to help alleviate pain. Interpersonal therapy focuses on you and your relationships with other people. It is based on the idea that personal relationships can cause emotional struggles which alter your response to pain.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY
CBT is a practical, short-term form of psychotherapy. It will harness your own brain power in managing your pain. Together we will focus on the here-and-now — on the problems that come up in your day-to-day life. It will help you to examine how you make sense of what is happening around you and how these perceptions affect your pain response.
MINDFULNESS BASED TECHNIQUES
Mindfulness is a series of techniques based on meditation. These techniques have been practiced by other cultures for centuries and have shown tremendous effect on stress reduction and pain control. Your therapist may teach you some of these techniques and ask you to practice them.
It is possible that therapy may involve a variety of all of these types of therapy, and that a combination will be specially formulated for you and your situation. Expect your sessions to last a fixed amount of time, determined by you and your therapist, and to follow a pattern of bi-weekly or monthly appointments for a fixed number of sessions. You may be asked to read materials in the interim, and to write down your thoughts or practice some techniques.
Together you and your therapist will strive to make your pain experience less challenging for you.