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SP0148 Learning To Control – The Power over The Day-To-Day Setbacks Is … Ours!
  1. M.F. Fonseca Santos,
  2. on behalf of Liga Portuguesa Contra as Doenças Reumáticas
  1. Patient, LPCDR, Lisboa, Portugal


Mental training is a powerful tool to give back the control of the patient's sensations, in pain relief and in emotional influence over the setbacks of the day. Being always complementary to medical treatment, mental training gives the patient the knowledge to manipulate the perceptions of pain and frustration, anger and sadness, contributing to reduce pain and to think differently about the difficulties in each patient's life. Knowing how to deal with the day-to-day setbacks is very empowering, for the patient takes back the control of his feelings, well-being and self-awareness.

There are several techniques that can be used in pain control – distraction, moving the pain from one spot to another, increasing and decreasing its perception, putting it in another platform (for example, out of our mind). These techniques can be chosen and adapted to each patient and to each pain in particular. Every time the patient uses mental training, he will also gain in relaxation, well-being and self-confidence, so important is this constant struggle.

On the other hand, when the patient gains control of his thoughts, so many times depressive, frustrated, angry or desperate, he can then decide what to do, how to feel, how to act. The way we live and give power to suffering is a choice, not a burden. It has been already proved how our thoughts modify the body chemistry – now it's time to do it regularly and get relief more quickly.

The description of this suffering or rejection of the illness is also a good help and often shows exactly what it has been doing to the patient feelings. Writing about these sensations (of pain or frustration) and its part in day-to-day routine can show to each one how to deal with it and exactly how much damage are we prepared to let it do to our lives. Words written (where our eyes can read them, observing rather than feeling) will let our minds think about them and decide what to do next. Emotional writing, when used as a technique to relieve the patient from his suffering, is a wonderful tool. Doing this in a group session can be the beginning of a different way of feeling. Most people live alone with their suffering. Hearing what others say and write about this, and how each one copes with their illness, can make this loneliness disappear, giving space to a new way to live beyond this illness.

Disclosure of Interest None declared

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