Who Can You Turn To?

I just completed giving a presentation to some healthcare providers about ways to reduce chronic pain over time and realized, once more, how overwhelmed and stressed out these professionals are becoming, given the demands to see so many patients within a given day. They are burning out from the rapid changes in healthcare and their requirements to complete copious notes in detailed, electronic health records.
One provider affirmed, “How can I do this? I just don’t have the time!” (Implying that he didn’t believe he could help his patients work through stages in the ‘pain management lifestyle’ model and monitor their improvements in the 5 scales over time).
It became clear to me that these providers need so much support in managing their lives. They need to know that they are not alone; that they need to reduce their self-expectations and know that not one healthcare provider can be a perfectionist in believing they have the magical cure to reducing each patients’ chronic pain completely.
The ability to change pain levels requires a team effort. Of particular importance is the addition of a trained, mental health clinician who can collaborate with other healthcare providers to help their patients work through each ‘pain management lifestyle’ stage and self-monitor ways to improve their pain conditions over time, using the 5 pain scales.
Reducing chronic pain ultimately rests with each patient knowing that they have faith and hope in each of their pain management team healthcare providers and that they are doing all they can to reduce each patients suffering.

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