I don’t always track my progress in terms of improvement (or otherwise) of my pain but sometimes it can be useful.  For example, when I first started to learn pain management and I was working hard on improving my pain situation, I tracked my progress using apps on my phone.  Since then I have tried tracking my progress using vector and other diagrams. 

 

As well as providing a level of positive reinforcement and encouragement I have found that tracking my progress with my pain meant that I could, at times, overall reduce my pain.

 

Because my pain is quite variable during the day I can find it quite difficult to work out what is affecting my pain, either positively or negatively.   I can also find it difficult to remember exactly what the overall pain levels were say last week, or even last month.  When I am tracking my pain levels then I can try different things, for example different medication, improvements with my sleep or exercise, and then more objectively work out what impact these changes have had on me. 

 

I don’t recommend tracking pain for long periods of time, apart from anything else when you are constantly thinking about your pain levels then it can have an adverse affect on you. I think it can be useful to do at certain periods of your pain journey, for example trialing new pain management methods or new medications. 

Learn more

Click on the pictures to learn more about each strand

1. Embrace the 'new you'

2. Understand pain

3. Understand YOUR pain

4. Know your pain triggers

5. Make plans, set goals

6. Pace yourself

7. Track your progress

8. Improve your sleep

9. Manage health conditions

10. Move and exercise

11. Improve your nutrition

12. Support your mental health

13. Relax and be mindful

14. Do things you enjoy

15. Attend to life stressors

16. Access clinician support

17. Ask for, and accept help

18. Help others understand

19. Review medications

20. Make adaptations, use aids

21. Return to work / education

22. Engage and socialise

23. Volunteer / help others

24. Explore resources

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