Chronic pain usually occurs after someone experiences an acute injury (injury starting between 0-2 weeks), and it is managed poorly, therefore turning it into a chronic injury (one lasting more than 3 months).
In the book ‘Aches and Pains’ by physiotherapist Louis Gifford, he describes 2 types of chronic pain sufferers; one who avoids activity and one who copes:
After reading all of these points, which type of person do you think ends up having longer lasting issues with their pain? … you guessed it, the avoiders!
Don’t get me wrong! I’m not saying that avoiders are unable to overcome their injuries quickly. But if an avoider and a coper both have the exact same injury with very similar symptoms and lifestyles… the coper is almost always going to recover quicker!
So if you are reading this and think you fit into the ‘coper’ category, then you are probably on the fast track to recovery and should keep doing exactly what you are doing. But if you feel like you fit into the ‘avoider’ category, then your road to recovery may be a bit windier and will likely have a few more roadworks and speed bumps along the way.
The take home message here is that, yes, your pain probably sucks. But sitting there dwelling on it and being negative is only going to make it harder for you in the long run! Take a step back, take a breath, and re-evaluate the way you are approaching the management of your pain. If you need a bit of extra assistance, come in and chat with one of our friendly practitioners who are more than happy to discuss the different ways you can work towards overcoming your pain!
Carly Rush - Exercise Physiologist