Manage Pain & Emotional Suffering © Martyn Carruthers

Online help for pain control by resolving emotional
and relationship issues.

Can you at least consider that pain and suffering may contain useful information?
If not, this article may only irritate you.

Pain is Important!

Some unfortunate people cannot experience pain. In the past, the horrible symptoms of leprosy were mostly due to anesthesia – the inability to feel pain. Some people cannot stop experiencing pain. Symptoms of RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) include abnormal, long-term pain, usually following trauma.

Some people avoid situations which might cause pain, and some people deal with pain by dissociating. But people who cannot experience pain have a disadvantage. Pain warns of potential damage and a need to change something. Pain provides important information.

Pain & Suffering

If most pain is a response to a physical stimulus, then suffering is a response to loss. Pain usually indicates damaged tissues while suffering usually indicates damaged relationships – for example – abandonment, abuse or betrayal.

When you are in pain, do you believe that you deserve to suffer? Some people avoid visiting a dentist until a pain threshold is reached; and people who have hurt or betrayed others may suffer until they resolve their guilt.

Pain can motivate us to withdraw from painful stimuli and to immobilize damaged body parts. Although pain is primarily associated with tissue damage, sometimes a painful location is not damaged (e.g. sciatica).

Pain is difficult to measure and may be affected by stress, fear and anxiety. Differences in pain response may be due to social, cultural, psychological and genetic factors.

Pain often follows stress and may be less severe if people better control stress and their reactions to stress. See also emotional intelligence.

Some people feel physical pain, while other people with the same stimulus feel comfortable. Pain responses seem to be mostly learned in childhood. Children who learn to suppress and hide their difficult feelings such sadness, fear and anger – may also learn to hide pain, for example when parents punish them for crying. Other children express pain to gain attention or love.

Acute & Chronic Pain

Acute pain includes immediate, usually short-term, intense body responses, often connected with depressed feelings, followed by a dull, throbbing sensations.

Chronic pain refers to  intense long-term sensations (over a few months). Chronic pain is often associated with cancer, multiple sclerosis or arthritis and is more difficult to locate and treat. Chronic pain can lead to complications such as hypochondria, depression, sleep disturbances, loss of appetite and feeling helpless.

Pain Control Medications

Pain can be controlled using chemicals that interfere with the transmission, reception or interpretation of painful signals. The most powerful pain control medications are opiates (e.g. morphine and heroin) and the most commonly used are salicylates (e.g. aspirin and acetaminophen). Other medications often used during pain control include antidepressants and tranquilizers.

Some herbal remedies contain medications similar to medical drugs, usually obtained from natural sources rather than artificially made. Alcohol is a traditional pain-medication in many cultures, often used in conjunction with herbs or nicotine (tobacco) – a powerful alkaloid that helps people dissociate.

Placebo (inert substances that look like drugs) are often more effective in pain control than any drug, as repeatedly shown in clinical double-blind trials…

Systemic Pain Control

We offer a multidisciplinary approach to pain. You can create a “resourceful space” to find freedom from pain, and to make decisions which may solve the problems that cause pain. You can be proactive rather than reactive in your pain control.

A drug is a substance that, when injected into a rat,
produces a scientific paper
. Edgerton Y Davis, Jr

You can learn to decrease your reliance on drugs by learning to control pain. (These skills are also valuable in crisis and emergency situations.)

If you cannot alleviate your pain, distress, depression or anxiety may worsen your condition. Our pain control coaching is often most appropriate for:

  1. People with chronic or recurring pain
  2. People who wish to avoid medications
  3. People with prolonged postoperative pain
  4. People who have little pain relief from medication
  5. People with a history of adverse reactions to medication

If you lack meaningful relationships, any increased attention, sympathy or support that you receive as a result of your pain may motivate you to prolong or exaggerate your pain. See Depression, Anxiety and Side Effects of Medication

Please consult your physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to pain, medical symptoms or medical conditions.

Long Term Pain Relief

Pain provides a message that something is wrong. If you receive a painful message and act upon it, further pain may be unnecessary. We can help you explore what is happening before using pain control techniques. Our work supplements medical treatment; but cannot replace it.

We may encourage initial “short-term” pain relief to create a resourceful space for you to follow the steps needed for longer-term relief. Our short term pain control may involve massage, acupuncture and/or hypnosis. ( Summary of short-term pain relief )

  1. The first goal is often deal with current crisis. First manage the shock of an accident, a medical test, an emergency, or a relationship crisis.
  2. How does your pain makes sense? Explore the causes and benefits of your pain, and ways to preserve any benefits while relieving the symptoms.
  3. Resolve any relationship problems, especially relationships in which you suffer, or feel anxiety or guilt.
  4. Resolve any conflicts about pain and its relief, while becoming specific about what you want instead of pain – and for what purpose.
  5. Resolve relationship bonds that require pain. This is particularly important if you have a family history of relatives who suffered chronic or recurring pain.
  6. Manage negative emotions. Anger, fear and sadness inhibit concentration and relaxation, and may increase pain. Some common issues are: anger about some person or event, sadness about lost opportunities and anxiety about death.
  7. Find appropriate mentors. Some of the better mentors for pain control are people with similar, but worse, situations to you, who have positive attitudes.

We request approval from a medical doctor before we commence pain control coaching. We refer people wanting pain control who have not had a recent medical examination to a physician.