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You probably already know that being in pain does not just affect you physically, but can make you feel stressed, frustrated, anxious and down. Many people find that pain can also make family and social relationships strained. Provided below are a few topics for further reading which may help provide you with tools and methods for use in one of these scenarios.

Click on the links below for more information about:  

Coming To Terms With Losses

“I have lost so much because of pain. My work, friendships, the plans I had for myself. I feel like I’m grieving.”

It is not unusual for people to feel that the emotions associated with long-term pain are like those after a bereavement. Living with persistent pain often brings with it many losses.

For an article about the psychological stages of adapting to long term pain, based on ideas about stages of grief, see the link below:

7 Stages Of Chronic Pain Illness

Sleep & Rest

Sleep is an essential part of feeling well and feeling happy, but almost everyone experiences problems sleeping at some time of their life. People with long-term pain are more likely to have problems with sleep. Lack of sleep robs you of needed rest, making management of your illness more difficult. Bringing sleep patterns under control is important – you need your rest. However, it often takes some time (several weeks) to get problematic sleep under control. Below is some advice about ‘Sleep Hygiene’:

Sleep Hygiene


“I realised that the more pain I was in, the more I tensed up and held my breath, and that made the pain worse! Finding ways to relax really helps.”

“Relaxation & Mindfulness practises help me cope with the stress of living with pain. They are part of my everyday life now, though it took some practice and time to work out what suits me best.”

Doing relaxation practises can help you reduce physical tension and to manage stress. As well as carrying out these practises when you’re feeling tense, it is a good idea to make them part of your daily routine, to help prevent the build-up of stress and tension.

Hear our Occupational Therapist talking you through some relaxation practises

YOUTUBE – Three-minute breathing space


Mindfulness is a way of paying attention to your mind, in the present moment and with self-compassion, without getting caught up in thoughts. It is not the same as relaxation, though many people do find mindfulness helpful in managing stress and tension.

“I used to think that I needed to empty my mind in order to relax, but I’ve learned I don’t need to get caught up in the thoughts or trying to get rid of them.”

There is more and more research about how mindfulness can be helpful for people living with pain. For a sense of what mindfulness can ‘look like’ when you have long term pain CLICK HERE

Mindfulness without meditation CLICK HERE