Best books about chronic pain according to redditors

We found 14 Reddit comments discussing the best books about chronic pain. We ranked the 7 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Chronic Pain:

u/leilahazlett · 6 pointsr/ChronicPain

I have found cognitive behavioral therapy to be useful as well as meditation. Even if you can't see a therapist there are many books out there you can use on your own to help change your attitude about your pain. I personally found this one to be useful:

u/Gertrude2008 · 4 pointsr/ChronicPain

The first one I read was recommended by one of my old physical therapists. You can find it here:

From there, I did some research, and found that one of the authors from the above book also has a workbook. If I had to chose between one or the other, I would have only purchased the workbook. You can find the workbook here:

It seriously changed my life. It looks like the price has gone up a significant amount since I purchased it a year or so ago. Maybe you can find it for cheaper? I think it was around $45 when I bought it which seemed like a lot... until I thought of the thousands of dollars I had paid for all my medical crap.

u/sugarhoneybadger · 3 pointsr/ChronicPain

My therapist has a book on techniques for managing chronic pain. Here it is. There's a section on mantras/relaxation techniques and how to condition your body to go into a state of relaxation when you hear a certain sound or phrase. Haven't tried it yet but the theory behind it seems solid.

u/flffykttn · 3 pointsr/ChronicPain

I am trying it at the moment. Previously I have read about pacing and thought "that's not for me, it sounds stupid, my back actually has something wrong with it so I have to be 'fixed' first". Then in the last few months I have realised that it's time to accept that I have chronic pain that is not going away and that I should start treating it like chronic pain, not acute pain that's been present for 3.5 years.

There are 3 books I have read that I found really helpful : Explain Pain, Living with Chronic Pain and The Pain Care Workbook

Explain Pain probably has the simplest description of pacing. As does the 3rd book, which along with the 2nd has good info on how to cope emotionally with chronic pain.
Another pacing resource is here

Two things I have learnt:

  1. Pacing- to start with, see how much of a particular activity you can do before your pain flares. For me I chose walking, and I could do about 15-20 mins before I would get pain. You can try it 3 times and get an average. Then you set up a plan to start doing shorter walks (eg for 10 mins) regularly, and increasing the time slowly (for me it is 5 mins per week but I could do it slower if I got a backlash). This is a big contrast to my previous 'boom and bust' method where I would go out and walk for an hour then be sore for 2-3 days then do no walking for 3 weeks then do an hour again. Pacing up so slowly is boring and I feel stupid, compared to running 12k I used to, walking around the block then resting seems lame. But I am doing well and stating positive.

  2. Your emotions definitely alter your brain's production of pain signals. If you're familiar with the gate theory of pain, I read a good quote somewhere "negative emotions open the gate for pain, and positive emotions close it". I am addressing the negative thoughts I have about pain (a lot if "oh I've screwed it up, now I'll be in pain for the rest of the week and it will be terrible and I'm a bad person") and trying to change the way I'm thinking using CBT.

    I'm also meditating and exploring different guided meditations specific to pain management (quite a few available on a you tube search for free). I hate meditating and will make any excuse to get out of it but it does relax me. I think CBT and relaxation can help a lot, even if it just helps to reduce distress associated with pain and not the pain itself. Also, muscle tension that goes along with frustration, anxiety, and worry makes me hurt more. So improving my mood and relaxing my muscles makes sense.

    Anyway, good luck with it, I hope this is of some help!
u/Pandaloon · 3 pointsr/ChronicPain

It's about mindfulness. But I found the one I went to was facilitated really well and gave space to people to talk. So I found it very supportive. I learned a lot and learned a lot from the participants. The orginator has also written a book which was used each class.

u/swamped_lc · 2 pointsr/Interstitialcystitis

Totally agree here. I went through a workbook with my therapist that explains the concepts and gives examples of the strategies. Ultimately, it takes a lot of time and practice to even recognize when you're in a negative thought pattern, never mind correcting it. Even knowing that some of these mental processes that seem overwhelming have names (i.e. catastrophizing) was really helpful to me.

For me I think reframing it in a way that makes sense to me works the best. I think of myself as a rational person. So when I make sweeping negative statements about myself that I wouldn't apply to someone I love, I ask myself, is that a rational thought? It's not. And because that does not align with my view of myself as a rational person, that makes it easier to reject. I also keep a pain/symptom journal so that when I start catastrophizing that "I'll never feel better again" I have an objective measure of my pain level and can point to recent times where I felt better and was able to do more.

u/lame_blame · 2 pointsr/Fibromyalgia

Ah, MIL needs to understand how seriously stress affects - sorry if she already does - but I mean its going to be key to you doing better ... maybe she got illness herself (mentally)

I dont know how sometimes things really get me and sometimes not.

Btw, have a look at this book - it has INSANE positive reviews, it seems little known. I'm reading through now and its eye-opening. Intense, but eye-opening. Check the reviews on it... It's intense and not easy, but it seems like the real deal, I'm only small way in. - I got a book version

Me too, go into burning hell.

I'm leaving this board anyway. Thanks for your words. Had enough bad experiences and triggered into more pain with ppl here than any benefit it offers.

u/[deleted] · 2 pointsr/Fibromyalgia

Also, you may like to look at this, I have heard excellent things from people with Fibro - and it has very high reveiws

u/MAHANGTTIA2 · 1 pointr/TMJ

What does your therapist say about continuing amitriptylline till you're doing better pain-wise? Also discuss the dose and understand the side effects. Usually by the time you get to 50mg at bedtime the pain is improved, but you need to discuss the appropriateness of that with your therapist or PCP. What does he/she say about adding relaxation techniques to the counseling? In the long run, meditation, exercise, progressive relaxation, music, positive social engagement, etc. seems like a better option than medications (or at least a good adjunct if they remain necessary).

At this point the dental part of TMJ syndrome seems less immediate than the psychological part. Check out this book: it comes with a relaxation CD and you can get it used on Amazon.

This book also looks good (have ordered it but haven't read it yet). It sounds like it's the chronic pain reduction guide from the American Psychiatric Association: