Persistent Pain - The Dilema

Almost one third of the Canadian population suffers with persistent pain conditions.  These can include chronic low back or neck pain, chronic arthritic conditions, fibromyalgia, complex regional pain syndrome, phantom limb pain.

There are several things that you need to know about pain if you have been living with it for months or even years.

First of all, all pain is real pain.  There is no such thing as imagined pain.  Some people might lead you to believe that it is all in your heads.  They might make you feel like you need to stop complaining and get on with your life.  As a result, living with persistent pain can be very lonely and frustrating.

Secondly, until the last 2 or 3 decades we have not understood persistent pain very well.  But now we know that all pain is an output from the brain 100% of the time.  Our remarkable brains continually process information from all over our bodies, minds, emotions to decide if we need to experience pain.

Thirdly, treatment for persistent pain has not been very successful for most people until recently.  Albert
Einstein once said “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again yet expecting a different result.”

That is what has happened in the past when we treated persistent pain.  Well meaning health care professionals treated persistent pain the same way as they treated a recent injury or condition and expected it to respond the same way.  But it didn’t.

People continue to experience high levels of pain and increasing disability.  You continue to suffer. 

Now we know more about our brains and our nervous system.  When treatment is directed at changing the pain system that is controlled by the brain, pain can and does decrease, sometimes quite significantly.  The suffering can stop and you can get on with living a much better quality of life.


Debbie offers a treatment programme that is based on current science and evidence in the treatment of pain.

Treatment is directed at changing the pain by changing the brain and the way it processes information.  It is directed at returning the pain system to its normal function rather than a system that quite literally has highjacked your brain and your life.

This is not the traditional physiotherapy treatment that you might have experienced in the past.  That is why Debbie offers a FREE 30 minute consult to introduce you to herself and the treatment she offers.

The Goals of Treatment

  • To help you understand your amazing brain and the way the pain system works.  Education includes the many factors that we now understand drive the pain system.  These are things like your thoughts, emotions, beliefs, attitudes, sleep.
  • ​​To identify and evaluate active strategies to encourage positive changes in your brain.  These changes can result in pain returning to its normal function as a warning system for danger. Chronic or persistent pain does not have to be a life sentence.
  • These strategies include brain based techniques to calm down a very sensitive nervous system and to retrain different brain areas and communication networks.  Debbie has experience in laterality retraining, guided motor imagery, mirror therapy, exercise prescription and manual therapy.
  •  To increase your daily function without increasing the pain.  This includes setting realistic goals to safely increase your levels of activity.  Debbie is trained and certified to provide the Progressive Goal Attainment Programme which targets risk factors for chronic pain and disability.
  • To address factors which we now understand contribute to your pain experience.  These include fear of activity and movement, stress and anxiety, and poor sleep.  Debbie is trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
  • To help you life well again, with resilience and joy.  Research is now demonstrating that this is possible.

Debbie provides many resources during treatment including appropriate websites, recommendations for books to read, PowerPoint presentations, YouTube videos, and handouts.

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