The Psychotherapy Center
289 N Sycamore Street
Newtown, PA 18940  
Recovery, Healing, Transformation

Living With Chronic Pain

    It can be difficult for people living with chronic pain to escape the long, slow slide into progressive debilitation and depression unless they have adequate coping mechanisms and support systems. The fight to maintain a positive state of mind is demanding and exhausting. Therapy for pain management is not about fixing the problem, but about minimizing the amount of suffering a person experiences.Therapy empowers the patient by increasing their belief in their abilities and providing new skills for coping with stressful situations.


    Susan Pearson, PhM, uses several techniques that allow a patient to feel more in control of their chronic pain. These may include deep breathing with progressive relaxation, guided imagery, and mindfulness-based stress reduction.


    Mindfulness meditation is a well-defined and powerful approach to self-care, promoting ongoing reduction of experienced pain, which leads to increased ability to focus and concentrate, better sleep habits, and over-all healing in one's life. The intention of mindfulness meditation is simply to experience what is present from moment to moment. When practiced regularly, Susan's patients report that these techniques change their "relationship" with their pain: the pain may still be there, but their reactivity to it is decreased, and therefore, their perceived intensity of that pain is greatly reduced.


    Often times, secondary losses due to living with chronic pain can contribute to a patient's feelings of depression and worthlessness. The loss of the ability to participate in family activities, financial stressors due to loss of employment and medical expenses, and loss of one's role in the family, can all have a negative impact on the entire family. Susan encourages the family members to come in to discuss their own feelings about the effects of living with a person who has chronic pain and disability.