Moving with Pain Program

Most people think that pain goes away when an injury or disease heals. This is true for a large number of people, but for one in five Australians the pain does not go away. It continues despite treatment for the condition that caused it, or treatment for the pain itself. This is called persistent or chronic pain.

Persistent pain can seriously affect the quality of a person's life. It affects their work and home life. Often family and friends can't really understand what their family member is going though. Sufferers have probably tried various treatments and often wondered if they're going to have to live with pain forever. Their doctor may even have said this to them. They may be wondering how they are going to cope when they are in such pain.

Recently, persistent pain has begun to be treated as a condition in its own right, by trying to reduce the problems it causes. Some of these problems are:

  • Sleeplessness and fatigue
  • Difficulty doing those activities at work or home that we used to take for granted
  • Loss of employment or change of duties
  • Disruption to family, friends and relationships
  • Physical and mental tension
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Side effects from medication (such as nausea, dizziness, loss of concentration etc)
  • Physical de-conditioning (such as muscle wasting and joint stiffening)
  • Increasing pain

Many people with persistent pain find that trying pain management is better than having more and more tests and treatments which don't help.

One of the best ways to improve how they manage their pain is by going to a pain management program. Pain management programs focus on how pain is affecting a participant's life and participants how to overcome the effects step-by-step. These steps will help, if participants work at putting into practice what they learnt.

Moving with Pain is a pain management group program run at the Royal Hobart Hospital. Moving with Pain uses practical methods to work on participants problems of pain, physical difficulties, distress and poor quality of life. We will help you to learn about your pain condition, and understand what affects the level of pain you feel. Participants will learn skills and strategies to help you manage your pain and start to get your life back.

Each group consists of eight to 12 people, who meet for four hours, once a week, for five weeks. This is usually from 9.00am to 1.00pm, with a break for morning tea. The program is designed so that participants will not have to sit or stand for long periods of time. There is a review session six weeks later to see how participants have gone practicing the new skills they have learnt. It is important that participants attend all six sessions.At home participants need to practice the things we suggest. By the end of Moving with Pain participants will have their own plan to work on, and, if they need it, we can continue to provide some ongoing support after the group has ended.