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Pain Care

Successful pain care does not always need to be costly and involve traveling to multiple appointments. Some aspects of successful pain care can be done in the privacy of your home-if you know what to do. PainGuide provides instruction for using a wide variety of self-management techniques that can be useful to individuals dealing with chronic pain. While self-management techniques may be all that you will need, they can also be used in combination with professionally-delivered treatments.

Damage to a body part and the pain accompanying that damage are actually two separate problems (even though they may seem to go together). The first problem, fixing the damaged body part, often requires professional help (e.g., medications, surgery, etc.). The second problem, pain, is not located at the site of injury. It is something the brain produces to warn of the injury. Sometimes this warning signal lasts well beyond healing or occurs without any injury. These are examples of chronic pain. While there are numerous professional treatments for chronic pain (see the PainGuide section on Professional Treatments), self-management is actually the foundation of successful pain control and can be used on its own or in combination with these other treatments. Since pain is produced in the brain, it can be influenced by whatever else is happening in the brain. Since you are the person with the most influence over the content of your own brain, you can have a great deal of influence over your pain. This section provides resources for pain self-management.

Below are two videos: one describes how self-care can be helpful in managing chronic pain and the second, describes the importance of Goal Setting in using self-care skills for chronic pain.

Some pain treatments must be delivered by a trained professional. Here you can also learn about these various treatments. We have classified treatments into the following groups: medications, therapies, devices, and procedures. For each approach we provide an explanation of the following: (1) what they do and how they work, (2) what to expect when receiving the treatment and (3) the risks and benefits of each approach.