Neil Pearson is leading an “understanding and helping you over come chronic pain” workshop on September 30 in Nelson.

Coping with chronic pain

A free workshop is open to the public on Tuesday, September 30 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Prestige Inn Lakeside.

Anyone who is suffering from chronic pain may want to take part in a free clinic with physical therapist Neil Pearson next Tuesday.

Pearson is a leading expert in pain neuroscience education and in 2013 was honoured with the Canadian Pain Society’s Excellence in Interprofessional Pain Education award. He will lead the Understanding and helping you over come chronic pain workshop on September 30. There will be an hour of gentle movement, breathing, and body awareness techniques following his talk. Based on his successful therapeutic yoga classes for people in pain, Neil will lead the group in calming their breathing and decreasing muscle tension before beginning gently, easy to modify movements and postures. The session offers a chance to put into practice ideas learned in the presentation, including the importance of calming the nervous systems, finding a greater sense of peacefulness in the midst of the pain and learning to move again without winding up the pain.

Pearson has a clinic in Penticton and travels internationally teaching health care professionals, people in pain and yoga teachers about modern pain science and pain management.

Community First Clinic is sponsoring the workshop clinic.

“We know he’s an amazing speaker, and a compassionate and very well versed in chronic pain management,” said Sharon Campese, manager at Community First Clinic Medical Manager. “Our patients deserve greater understanding – an understanding that inspires us to provide treatment for the pain and compassionate are for the person in pain. This is an opportunity for people suffering chronic pain to hear the same information that their health care providers hear. The best self management plans include techniques to decrease the sensitization of nervous systems associated with chronic pain and techniques to exercise without continually flaring up the pain. Many people who live with chronic pain struggle to function, many lose their jobs and let their pain define them.”

The clinic often runs workshops for local physicians but decided to open this workshop to the public due to the demand they see in their clientele base.

“We receive approximately 10 new requests for pain consultations per week,” said Campese.  “There are many causes for chronic pain such as motor vehicle accidents, work place injuries, disease (cancer, arthritis, fibromyalgia, ankylosing spondilitis etc. Chronic pain affects nearly six million Canadians, it is a devastating, often debilitating condition that costs the medical system more than cancer, heart disease and HIV combined. (source Pain BC)”

The clinic chose Neil Pearson to come to Nelson because of “his reputation, calm reassuring demeanor and he is a genuine nice person,” said Campese.

Campese said, “Most often patients suffering chronic pain have had to travel to either Calgary, Vancouver or Kelowna for treatment and experience potential long wait times. We are able to have new referrals seen in our clinic within two weeks of receipt of request. There are many treatments for chronic pain depending on the cause and severity. In our clinic we offer supportive counseling, kinesiology, yoga therapy and interventional treatments such as epidurals, prolotherapy and nerve blocks.

The workshop is open to the public on Tuesday, September 30 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Prestige Inn Lakeside.

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