As we discussed in the last session, chronic pain changes brain functioning which can negatively affect many of the body’s systems; this adaptation is called bioplasticity.
There are many aspects of our lives, both internal and external, which can influence if and how we feel pain. Things we hear, smell, taste, touch, things we say, do, think, places we go, people in our life and things happening in our body all have an effect on how we feel pain. In other words, pain depends on context.
Respected pain researchers Butler and Moseley explain this as the body protectively responding to DIMs Danger-in-me, and SIMs Safety-in-me. The greater the danger your brain perceives your body to be in, the more likely you are to have pain to protect you, the less likely you are to move or behave normally, so increasing your pain.
For example scans or Xrays might show or describe things such as deformity, degenerative, gross, prolapsed, protruding or bulging, which can sound very scary and dangerous. Even more so if it makes you worry for your job, sport or lifestyle. These are DIMs and can amplify pain.
If you are well-informed and know that all of those scan findings might actually be quite normal and that there is a big mis-match between what is seen on imaging and what you feel, they become SIMs; non-threatening. And pain goes down.
Butler and Moseley’s book Painful Yarns is an excellent read that helps to explain how this all works.
Just as bioplasticity got you into chronic pain, it’s also the way out. Using many different scientifically proven techniques, to accentuate the positive – SIMs – and eliminate the negative – DIMs – physiotherapists at Miami Physio can help you exercise your brain in the same way you exercise your body to train your brain away from pain.
Miami Physio : 9534 4111
Lakelands Physio: 9542 9999