Changing Your Reaction to Pain

Thinking of arthritis pain as a signal that may be changed by taking positive action is a healthy approach.  Following your doctor’s treatment plan is important, of course.  Adding these tips can make a difference, too.  Use them to build a sense of personal control by adjusting your thoughts and actions.

  • Keep a positive attitude. Arthritis may limit some of the things you can do, but it doesn’t have to control your life.  Build your life around wellness.  This means thinking positive thoughts, having a sense of humor, eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, surrounding yourself with positive people, and enjoying activities with friends and family.
  • Don’t dwell. The amount of time you spend thinking about pain can affect your discomfort level.  People who dwell on their pain usually say it’s worse than those who don’t.  Focus on something else, such as an enjoyable activity.
  • Create a pain-management plan. Make a chart of your pain-control methods to help track which work best for you.  Share it with your doctor.

Source:  The Arthritis Foundation