Mental Health Moment: Coping with Chronic Pain

Man experiencing chronic pain.

Chronic pain or illness doesn’t just affect your body – it can affect your mental health.

The stress of constant discomfort and dealing with medications, doctors’ appointments, and more can cause frustration and anger with yourself or loved ones. But there are ways to cope.

Your doctor or specialist can treat chronic physical pain (pain that lasts longer than six months and affects your daily life), but a therapist or psychologist can help with the mental effects. Some other ways to deal with the stress include:

Think and speak positively. Focusing on the progress you’re making and thinking positively can help your comfort level. Treat yourself as you would a friend; speak to yourself kindly and allow yourself to take the time you need to make yourself comfortable.

Deal with your stress. Acknowledge that your physical pain can lead to increased stress. Focus on eating well, getting enough sleep, and exercising regularly if you are able to help your mental health.

Reach out for help. You’re not alone! Join a support group for people in your same position or find an online forum for discussion (try #spoonies on Twitter, for example). Having someone who understands to talk things through with can help you get by.

Content by Lockton Dunning Benefits with info from https://www.apa.org/topics/pain/chronic