Pain is more than the “ouch”!

Almost 31 million days of work were lost in 2013 due to back, neck, and muscle pain, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS: 2013). Having musculoskeletal issues can have a snow balling effect on your health, as the rest of the body can follow. For example, depression is linked to continual pain.

Through brain imagining, it has been shown how complex pain is. There are different aspects of the brain involved, so it’s much more than the “ouch”. There are also other sensory and emotional overlays that create the complex feeling of pain, which means on the up-side that there is much more we can do to manage painful experiences than perhaps was once first thought.

Firstly however, it is really important when experiencing painful feelings that you get yourself medically checked out, and find the necessary treatment required. Painful sensations are telling you something is not right in your body, so find out what that is.

However, sometimes through all sorts of different circumstances, there is a need to learn how to manage those painful feelings. Maybe it’s a continual bad back, arthritis, migraine, frozen shoulder, or some other kind of painful experience that is never going to quite go away, or is always going to be intense. Then there is a need to learn how to manage or turn down the sensations, so that your life can go on.

Living in pain can really take hold of your life, and influence the things that you do and the choices you make. So finding ways to lessen the pain is a must. Now we know so much more about the brain and how it operates, and what else influences our experiences, there is hope. Medication can be part of the answer but there are also many many techniques that can also make a huge difference to the quality of your life.

Click here to find out more about what makes up your experience of pain, and what you can begin to do to make some changes.


Author: Dr Tom Barber

Dr Tom Barber is a #1 bestselling author, integrative and existential psychotherapist and coach, speaker, and co-founder of Self Help School, and Contemporary College of Therapeutic Studies. His work has spanned over 25 years, in which he has focussed on helping people all over the world to improve their knowledge and understanding of their psychological worlds. Tom regularly delivers courses and lectures in the UK, USA, Canada, Mexico, and across Europe. In addition, he maintains a private therapy and coaching consultancy, and psychotherapy training college from his base in London.