Everyone with health related problems can use a doctor as an ally. This is especially true for people with chronic pain. At their best, doctors can provide good management, appropriate referral, emotional support and advocacy. But chronic pain patients are frequently managed poorly and marginalized. How can this be? Doctors are highly trained professionals and […]

Accepting Reality

It is not fair that you have chronic pain. Our health care system isn’t equipped to provide you with optimal care. Your insurer, compensation board, employer, friends or family may not understand what it is like for you. Even the doctors you see may seem more suspicious than supportive when you repeatedly ask for help. […]

Help Yourself First

In order to use doctors and by extension the entire health care system including private insurers, you need to be able control yourself. If you have little or no control over yourself how can you possibly expect to influence others? But controlling yourself is hard when you’re always in pain, nobody seems to understand you […]

How to Help Yourself

So far in this series, the focus has been on what people with pain should be doing for themselves to help them take charge of themselves. In this post, the emphasis is on how rather than what. There are many methods and techniques that can help train calmness and relaxation. They are widely accessible. In […]

About Doctors

Although a necessary requirement for using doctors is to start mastering yourself, it is just as important to understand who and what you may have to deal with when seeking help for your pain. The first and perhaps most surprising thing you need to know is that most medical doctors receive very little if any […]

More About Doctors

There is a saying in medicine that those who specialize learn more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing. As medical knowledge has increased so too has specialization. It is impossible for any one human being to know all that is being discovered even in only one area of medicine. […]

How Doctors Think

If you understand how doctors think about illness and pain you will be better equipped to use them to your benefit. In general, doctors are trained to gather information from which to draw a conclusion that guides an action. The information a doctor gathers may include answers to questions about symptoms, general health, medication/drug use, […]

In the Office

You have been referred to a doctor for your chronic pain. Chances are that this is not the first time you’ve been referred for the same problem. What you can bring to the appointment that can help you get the right care? If you have been reading this series (Using Doctors), then you know one […]

Wanted: Chronic Pain Doctors

The ideal chronic pain physician is the one who satisfies all your needs and wants with respect to your chronic pain. However, doctors are trained to manage problems, not satisfy needs and wants. Therefore you need to see that there are two sides to looking for a chronic pain doctor. Please understand that the following […]

Thinking About Drugs

The very word drug, immediately conjures a multitude of connotations that reflect our many views of the pharmaceutical and herbal substances we ingest. We characterize drugs as hard, soft, performance enhancing, mind expanding, toxic, synthetic, natural, addictive, dangerous and miraculous. Personal experience and exposure to information about drugs colour the way all of us (including […]