Article

Don’t be afraid to discuss money with your health care provider

Money is not a topic that health care providers and patients often discuss.  But health care providers need to know as much as possible about you to plan for your best medical care.  How able you are to afford health care related expenses, without causing a major impact on your life, is important for your… Read more »

Getting control of panicky feelings

Barbara is pleased with how she manages her chronic pain by using medication, exercise, and meditation.  But at times she will have a sudden feeling of panic, causing her heart to race.  When this happens, Barbara struggles to regain control. It’s not unusual for some people who cope with chronic pain, to feel occasional, sudden… Read more »

Using chronic pain as an opportunity for personal growth

Chronic pain is not something you have to experience passively.  Part of taking an active role in coping with your pain is finding a way to use it to learn more about yourself. How do you begin to make sense of what it means to live in pain?   For many people, living with chronic pain… Read more »

Laugh for the health of it

“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine” -Proverbs 17:22 “Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility” -James Thurber “Laughter may be a form of courage” -Linda Ellerbee “If you can find humor in anything, you can survive it.” -Bill Cosby What’s funny about pain? If you’re thinking there’s nothing funny about being in pain,… Read more »

When you’ve had ENOUGH: Pain that won’t let go

Have you ever felt like Howard Beale in the 1976 movie Network? When Howard decided that he couldn’t take any more frustration and emotional pain in his life, he threw open a window and yelled (to paraphrase): I’m MAD and I’m not going to take it anymore!! By today’s standards, yelling from a window is pretty tame –… Read more »

When your brain helps the pain: Cognitive therapy in action

As they say, the only guarantees in life are death and taxes. But what about pain? We all have that, too – although some feel it more than others. And some people with chronic pain conditions have a 24/7 pain problem that can be ruthless. How do they handle it? Medication isn’t the only answer: A person’s… Read more »

Sharing stories: Understanding our differences

Have you ever felt like there were invisible barriers between you and your health care provider?  Dealing with chronic pain is difficult enough, and it gets even harder when you feel like your provider doesn’t understand you.  In an ideal world, everyone understands each other and everyone gets equal treatment, but this is not always… Read more »

Communication: Improve your game

Would you like to improve your communication skills? Effective communication involves both talking and listening. It can be compared to a game of catch in which the words are the ball. This article will try to give you a different way to think about your “communication game.” The pitcher and the catcher If communication is the game… Read more »

The emergency department: A last resort?

Lisa had been dealing with chronic pain for years, but her medication and other treatments usually kept it under good control.  One Sunday, Lisa’s pain began getting much worse. She panicked, thinking that something really bad was happening to her and that the pain would continue to get worse.  When she couldn’t reach her health… Read more »