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Chronic pain education

Chronic Pain has recently been recognized by international organisations (International Classification of Diseases) as an illness in itself – like having diabetes or high blood pressure. This is because we increasingly understand the physiology and body changes that occur in both the area of pain, within the spinal cord, and within the brain, that contribute to you experiencing pain or discomfort.

Some of these issues are wiring changes, some of them are changes in chemicals or inflammation that trigger the pain signals, and some of them are even what we call neuroplastic changes in the brain. For example, when you practice something new, like playing the guitar, we know there are changes to the wiring in your brain. We also know that there are similar changes that occur in the brain if you have experienced pain for more than three months– which can contribute to the pain continuing.

The good news is that by looking at your pain holistically and looking at all the things that contribute to pain, research has shown that if we can improve these factors, people’s pain often improves, their quality of life improves, and ultimately people are able to function and do more in their life despite their pain.

The first step is knowledge. Knowledge is power, and we want you to understand the processes involved in chronic pain so you can be part of your treatment and decide what treatments or therapies are best for you. These may be medications, relaxation techniques, procedures, surgery, psychology, physiotherapy, exercise, swimming etc. The important thing is that every person is different, and therefore every pain management plan is also different.

The best way for us to be able to guide and support you is for you also to understand your specific pain and what we can do together to help you improve.

There are links below to help give you more understanding of chronic pain and how it can be treated effectively.

We are also involved with the Buderim Outpatient Pain Program (BOPP) which is a program of 35 hours over 5 weeks with physiotherapists, exercise physiologists, occupational therapists, and our pain physicians – for education, goal setting, exercise modification, and to improve your knowledge and skills to help self-manage your pain and strengthen your resolve against pain being a major factor in your life. There is a maximum of six to eight people in each group allowing you lots of 1 on 1 time with your health recovery team.

This is a great step forward for recovery and patients find this very helpful and they are often able to get back to doing some of the activities they used to enjoy. This program can be covered by health providers, DVA and Workcover (in some settings) often leading to minimal out of pocket expenses if you are eligible.

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on your journey to Resolve Pain.