Does an Optimist Feel Less Pain?

Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.

Optimism plays a role in easing persistent pain symptoms.You have a pain in your knee that won’t go away. You’ve been to the doctor. You’ve tried all the treatments out there that you can think of.

You bought the expensive shoes that were supposed to give the best support to your back and knees. You’ve tried the latest diet to bring down your weight a bit and lighten the load that your knees have to carry with every step. You’ve been to the gym and lifted weights to strengthen all the muscles around the area of your sore knee. And, when you really needed it, you took a painkiller to get you through those days when the pain just wouldn’t recede.

So what else can you do, if your knee still hurts? Well—this may seem like a stretch—but try being optimistic. Researchers at Alabama University have discovered that thinking positively could actually alter how you react to pain symptoms.

Also Read ==> Pain Behind Knee – Causes and Natural Treatments

When you’re faced with a chronic health problem, you might not be able to help feeling pessimistic and upset about your situation. Some researchers call this “catastrophizing,” when you feel that your health problems will go on forever, that they will continue to get worse, and that the pain will become unbearable. Putting the brakes on this type of thinking could significantly alter your perception of pain.

Trying to be optimistic about your health can help to contain your experience of pain in a manageable “box.” It frees you up to appreciate other things that are going well. Perhaps your heart is healthy and strong, or your digestive system never acts up, or your mind is as sharp as it was when you were 25. Whatever helps you to be optimistic, just hold onto those feelings.

That doesn’t mean you have to have complete acceptance of your condition—not at all! Having a knee that hurts all the time isn’t really fair and probably should make you angry. Use that anger and frustration and channel it into something positive. Boost your ability to feel optimistic about the rest of your life and you may find, miraculously, that your pain symptoms become less intense and less frequent.

Source(s) for Today’s Article:
Wright, M.A., et al., “Pain acceptance, hope, and optimism: relationships to pain and adjustment in patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain,” J Pain November 2011; 12(11): 1155-62.
Goodin, B.R., et al,, “Optimism and the experience of pain: benefits of seeing the glass as half full,” Curr Pain Headache Rep. May 2013; 17(5): 329.