Living with chronic pain: How to balance mental health needs for social connections with your physical limitations
If you live with chronic pain, you know that the mere act of getting up in the morning and getting out of bed can be excruciatingly difficult. What I have found, in working with chronic pain patients is that often, there is an unhealthy interplay and cascade effect between chronic pain, depression and isolation. If you live in chronic pain, you might find it difficult to get to a social event and not going to such events increases social isolation which in turn increases depression. What’s worse is that experts are not quite sure yet how pain and depression are linked but posit that not only does pain lead to depression but depression and social isolation may exacerbate the subjective experience of physical pain. Chronic pain may be a catch-22 experience where multiple factors affect each other and the person who experiences the pain may not be very successful at finding their way out of the labyrinth of multi-dimensional suffering.
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