Many veterans suffer from chronic pain, which is defined as any pain lasting more than three months that results in a loss of life quality. Chronic pain is complex and affects the body, mind, and emotional state. Medications alone are often not enough to help our veterans, and their side effects can cause medical professionals to limit their use.
One treatment that has been showing success with veterans is Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Chronic Pain (CBT-CP) which we will refer to as CBT for this article. This treatment deals with changing the way our brains process pain signals to help veterans deal with the long-term effects of chronic pain. CBT is available to veterans through the VA health system after consulting their primary physician, pain management provider, therapist, or psychiatrist.
CBT is a self-directed program that uses a problem-solving approach to:
- Help the veteran deal with the challenges of chronic pain
- Change their overall pain experience
- Help them feel more in control of their pain
- Gain a feeling of empowerment over their pain issues
The program consists of an initial assessment visit and 10 follow-up visits. Veterans need to attend their sessions regularly to gain the maximum benefit from learning these techniques. A final assessment visit can help confirm long-term goals and help with any difficult areas. The overall goal of CBT is to help veterans:
- Improve their overall quality of life
- Decrease how pain controls their lives
- Decrease the intensity of their pain
- Manage recurring pain flare-ups more effectively
SRQ Vets is led by local Sarasota Florida vets to help other vets. We are a non-profit organization created to help vets and their families in need. We work with a wide range of local and national organizations to provide resources to improve the quality of life for our veterans. For more information please call 941-777-8387 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.