Recovery from addictions and recovery from chronic pain share remarkable similarities, and require remarkably similar skills.
To share an insight from Dr. Mel Pohl’s very useful book, A Day Without Pain, healing in both cases starts with a recognition and acceptance of powerlessness.
In the case of addiction, it is powerlessness over the drug or behavior
In the case of chronic pain, it is over the pain
Both require fundamental, even existential changes in thinking.
Both require a systematic approach.
Both require a multimodal approach, meaning using many techniques.
We are interested in any techniques that might help our patients that have good scientific data. This doesn’t mean that any one approach or modality will help a particular patient, but it is worth a try. It also doesn’t mean that a particular modality alone will be enough; it may be part of a patients program.