Pain Management in Maine



Regaining Control over Your Pain And Your Life


Goals of Behavioral Treatment:

  • Reducing the intensity and impact of the pain through self-management skills
  • Reducing or eliminating:
    • the stressfulness of the pain,
    • the ability of the pain to cause suffering, and
    • the impact of the pain on your relationships, work and life.


  • Biofeedback
  • Learning to control muscle tension, blood flow, and physical stress
  • Deep physical and mental relaxation
  • Advanced learning about pain processes and how to change them
  • Fine-grained analysis of patterns in the pain
  • Counseling to learn new ways of responding to pain
  • Coordination as part of the treatment team

NIH Consensus Statement:

''A number of well-defined behavioral and relaxation interventions now exist and are effective in the treatment of chronic pain and insomnia. The panel found strong evidence for the use of relaxation techniques in reducing chronic pain in a variety of medical conditions...''

- National Institutes of Health. (1996). Integration of behavioral and relaxation approaches into the treatment of chronic pain and insomnia. Journal of the American Medical Association, 276, 313-318.

Self-management skills are particularly useful when:

  • The pain is increased by stress, as is often seen in migraines, tension-type headaches, complex regional pain syndrome (causalgia and reflex sympathetic dystrophy), and myofascial pain.
  • Muscle tension contributes to the pain, as in tension myalgia and certain overuse injuries.
  • The condition is likely to be present long-term, such that self-management tools will be an important part of reducing pain, and regaining functioning and quality of life. Examples include fibromyalgia and failed back surgery syndrome.

Successful patients often have good control over other areas of their lives, and are seeking to maximize their pain coping, functioning and well being.

Often, for patients, managing chronic pain conditions has three parts: a part that requires medical treatment, a part that is, or can be, under your own control, and a part that requires time. Our goal is to understand your condition in a way that includes all three parts, so that you can be as involved as possible in your recovery.

For chronic pain treatment, our goal is to contribute as part of a "team without walls," including the patient's physician and other providers.

For workbook suggestions and references click here.

Please call the Health Psych Maine office at 207-872-5800 if you would like more information or to schedule an appointment.