Practical Pain Education

I gave a talk on how I approach pain education in the land of China, and yes I finally got around to re-recording it. Here were some of the topics I discussed in this talk: The history of pain education The difference between the three pain mechanisms What the current research suggests regarding pain and threat The 14 most common maladaptive pain beliefs, and how to squash those thoughts via education If you want immediate access to the remainder of the 1 hour and 49 minute talk, and a FREE 21 page PDF file of my talk notes, fill out the form below. Without further adieu, here is the first 20+ minutes of the talk.

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Explain Pain Section 6: Management Essentials

This is a summary of section 6 of “Explain Pain” by David Butler and Lorimer Moseley. Management 101 The most important thing you can understand is that no one has the answer for all pains. Pain is entirely individualistic, hence requiring different answers. There are several strategies which one can undertake to triumph over pain. Tool 1: Education Knowing how pain works is one of the most important components to overcoming pain. Instead of no pain, no gain, the authors like to use “know pain, or no gain.” Understanding pain is essential for squashing fear of pain, which leads best toward the road to recovery. Here are some important concepts to be known about explaining pain. Anyone can understand pain physiology. Learning about pain physiology reduces pain’s threat value. Combining pain education with movement approaches will increase physical capacity, reduce pain, and improve quality of life. Tool 2: Hurt ≠ Harm It is important to understand that when someone feels pain it does not equate with damage. The same can be said with recurring pains. These pain types are often ways to prevent you from making the same mistake twice. If your brain sees similar cues that were present with a previous injury, the brain may make you experience pain as a way to check on you and make sure you are okay. Just because hurt does not mean harm does not mean you can get crazy though. Because the nervous system is trying to protect you, it will take

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Explain Pain Section 4: Altered Central Nervous System Alarms

This is a summary of section 4 of “Explain Pain” by David Butler and Lorimer Moseley. CNS Alarms While much of talk in rehab deals with tissue injury and tissue pain, realize that the brain always makes the final decision as to whether or not you should feel pain. No brain, no pain. This sentiment does not mean that pain is not real. All pain is real. However, pain is a construct that the brain creates in order to ensure your survival. Spinal Cord Alarms When an injury occurs and the DRG receives impulses from peripheral structures or the brain, the spinal cord neurons must adapt to better uptake all these signals. In essence, the DRG becomes better at sending danger messages up to the brain. This change leads to short term increases in sensitivity to excitatory chemicals. Those stimuli that didn’t hurt before now do (allodynia) and those that used to hurt now hurt more (hyperalgesia). In persistent pain, this change continues occurring to the point where neurons that do not carry danger messages start growing into space where danger messages are taking place. Now innocuous stimuli such as grazing the skin begin hurting. The pain may be normal, but the underlying processes become abnormal. When these spinal cord alarm systems become unhealthy, the brain no longer receives an accurate message of what is going on. The alarms become magnified and distorted.  The brain is told there is more damage in the tissues than is actually present. What is good is

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