Posted on 31st March 2023 at 15:47
This content looks at empowering self-management in pain and long-term health care conditions. What is it and how do we do it?
Is it a fob-off?
‘Self management?’ “What’s that, am I being fobbed off and just left to it?!”
The above question and feeling can happen often with the subject of self-management and is a challenge when helping people with persistent pain and long-term health conditions. It is in direct opposition to a passive system of healthcare where people are led to believe they need fixing and can believe they don’t have much power or choice in their management.
This can lead to frustration and not knowing what to do and still having the issue they are seeking help for. Looking at individual and societal pain beliefs, helping you make sense of your condition and individual situation and then identifying your needs and goals is the platform to developing your individual care plan and self-management strategies that will give you control and assist in managing your condition in the short and long-term.
Using their Physiotherapy, Nutrition and Specialist Pain Management skills and experience, Your Health Roots is an organization that specializes in treating, coaching and assisting people with long-term health problems, including persistent pain. We work with you to develop a personalized self-management plan that meets your unique needs and goals. We provide evidence-based strategies to help you managing your pain and improve your quality of life.
Let's have a look at a recent case to illustrate
Kevin, 61 is a retired police officer, keen gym goer and used to being fit and active and enjoying walks with his wife and getting out on his motorbike. In recent years this has come to a frustrating stop because of persistent knee pain due to his osteoarthritis where even stairs were a problem. This has been very frustrating and upsetting for Kevin who admitted to being very low, with his home life being affected. He was even, reluctantly, contemplating selling his beloved motorbike as the pain and stiffness meant he could no longer get on it. As a last ditch attempt at regaining control, Kevin returned to the gym doing some leg exercises he thought may help but have actually exacerbated the problem.
During an informal conversation with Your Health Roots, Kevin was offered an individualized treatment and rehabilitation/management plan that took into account his current challenges, personal preferences, and up-to-date self-management strategies. The plan provided him with advice, reassurance, and demonstrated how much power and control he actually has as. This was evidenced by his significant improvement in using stairs without experiencing pain or apprehension. Moreover, he was able to ride his motorbike and return to the gym, following an appropriate self-management program. Kevin expressed his gratitude for the plan's effectiveness and provided the following update;
“Absolutely brilliant, Matt actually listens to you and what you're struggling with. Realistic advice and rehab program with rest and recovery built in. 6 gym sessions in and the difference is like night and day. Still a long way to go but I'm feeling positive for the first time in ages. Highly recommend Your Health Roots”
Here are some of the benefits of self-management for people with persistent pain:
1. Reduced pain: Self-management strategies such as exercise, relaxation techniques, and mindfulness have been shown to reduce pain in people with persistent pain.
2. Improved function: Self-management strategies can help improve mobility, strength, and overall physical function, which can help you stay independent and maintain a high quality of life.
3. Enhanced well-being: Self-management strategies can help improve your mood, reduce stress, and enhance your overall sense of well-being.
4. Increased confidence: By learning to manage your pain, you can feel more in control of your life, which can increase your confidence and self-esteem.
Your Health Roots can provide you with the tools, resources, and support you need to take control of your persistent pain. They can help you develop a personalized self-management plan that includes evidence-based strategies such as exercise, relaxation techniques, examining pain beliefs and help with pacing of activities and how to manage flare ups amongst others.
In conclusion, self-management is a crucial part of managing persistent pain. By taking an active role in your care, you can reduce pain, improve function, and enhance your overall well-being. Your Health Roots can help you on your journey to self-management by providing coaching, support, and evidence-based strategies. Remember, you are not alone, and with the right tools and support, you can take control of your persistent pain and lead a fulfilling life.
Further self management resources that we at Your Health Roots recommend;
Developed and managed by Pete Moore who firmly believes in putting people back in the driving seat of their care and one which we wholeheartedly agree with.. Pete saw that people with a long-term pain experience were not being helped and were passive recipients of a lot of care and sought a way to change this, for himself and now through his pain toolkit, countless others. A great resource that we often share with the people we work with.
A wonderful Musculo-skeletal/multi-condition advice and practical information portal that provides a great resource to patients. Developed by IPRS Health it is another resource that we regularly signpost people to.
Also a mention to our exercise prescription software, Physitrack as this helps us develop and monitor individual programmes for the people we work with making for an efficient adjunct to the guided self-management process.
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