As a physical therapist who specializes in pain management, I find many patients misunderstand or misinterpret the concept of pain. Pain serves a fundamental purpose: to protect you, tell you something is wrong, and motivate you to take action. Without pain, you wouldn't feel a needle prick or ankle sprain.
The pivotal, often overlooked concept is that your brain, not your body, creates pain. That understanding becomes a game changer because, new research reveals, when you understand pain, you can heal better and faster.
Rather than pain receptors, your body contains nociceptors that carry danger messages along nerves and up into the brain. Your brain interprets how you deal with that pain.
I want to be clear that pain is always real. Pain isn't in your head; it exists in your brain. When you understand your brain controls pain, you can take control to transform how you see and work through pain.
From that perspective, I want my patients to understand these seven key concepts about pain: