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Healing Pain Podcast

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Episode 111 | Dr. Shiroko Sokitch, MD: Integrative Primary Care for Pain Management

Dr. Shiroko Sokitch was originally trained in general surgery and worked as an emergency room physician for over ten years when she noticed that many of the patients she was treating were struggling with pain and other chronic health conditions. She decided to attend to acupuncture school and later studied functional medicine. She now owns and operates a successful integrative primary care practice using the best tools from Western, Eastern, and functional medicine. Learn how Dr. Sokitch was...


Episode 110 | Dr. David Cosio, PhD: Effective Strategies For Pain Management

People tend to think that having no pain is normal when in fact, having a little is. While that is the case, there are still some ways that can help us manage pain. Talking about effective strategies for pain management is Dr. David Cosio. He is a pain psychologist in the Pain Clinic and interdisciplinary pain program at the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center in Chicago. He earned his PhD from Ohio University with a specialization in Health Psychology. Starting with his journey, he shares how he...


Episode 109 | Dr. John Cryan, PhD: How The Microbiome Affects Stress, Pain And Mood

The microbiome is an interesting and rapidly growing area of research. There are trillions of microbes inhabiting our bodies, and we have more microbial cells than we do human cells. Dr. John Cryan, PhD, professor and Chair of the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience at the University of Cork, Ireland, talks about everything involved with the microbiome, from mood to pain to neurotransmitters through our nutrition. His current research includes the neurobiological basis of stress-related...


Episode 108 | How To Treat Neuropathy And Neuropathic Pain Using Nutrition

Is our American diet affecting us? We know that it's affecting our weight, our metabolic syndrome. We know that it's leading to diseases such as diabetes and prediabetes. However, it's also effecting neuropathic pain. Neuropathic pain is pain caused by damage or disease affecting the somatosensory nervous system, a part of the sensory nervous system. No wonder out diet is called SAD or the standard American diet. Almost everything about the western diet or the standard American diet leaves...


Episode 107 | Dr. Beverly E. Thorn, PhD: Cognitive And Mindfulness-Based Pain Care

Whether you are a practitioner or a patient interested in learning more about psychological informed care, you will benefit a lot from Dr. Beverly E. Thorn’s research which focuses on investigating the important components of cognitive behavioral therapy for chronic pain. Beverly is Professor Emerita of psychology at the University of Alabama. She is the recipient of the 2018 Wilbert E Fordyce Clinical Investigator Award from the American Pain Society. She explains why the cognitive model is...


Episode 106 | Dr. Meg Haworth, PhD: Overcoming The Effects Of Victimization In Pain Management

Suffering from chronic pain can be challenging. It makes you feel powerless either because you’re unable to heal your body or can’t find a way get the pain to stop. As a result, you feel victimized by the pain. Helping you overcome the effects of victimization is transpersonal psychologist, Dr. Meg Haworth, PhD. Learn how the emotions affect the illness and how to release them through the mind. Familiarize the simple mind-body medicine tools for resetting yourself when you encounter some...


Episode 105 | Dr. Mark Bishop, PT, PhD: How Expectations Shape Pain

So many factors can cause and modify pain, not only physical but mental and emotional as well. Taking the psychological aspects of it, Dr. Mark Bishop tackles how expectations and biases influence the outcome for patients who have chronic pain. Dr. Bishop is a physical therapist with 30 years of experience in managing musculoskeletal disorders. Learn how patient expectations are related to rehabilitation outcomes and how provider biases influence those expectations. Likewise, find out the...


Episode 104 | Dr. Kristin Neff, PhD: The Art Of Self-Compassion In Pain Care

Self-compassion is a tool that you can use to improve your well-being, your self-confidence, and your resilience. It’s one that we need to pay a lot more attention to in the world of pain care. What's interesting about self-compassion is that oftentimes it's easy for us to be compassionate towards others, but applying the same kindness to ourselves can be a real challenge. Moral development specialist and co-author of the book called The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook, Dr. Kristin Neff,...


Episode 103 | Roshi Joan Halifax: Infusing Compassion And Empathy Into Pain Care

Tackling about an interesting topic that does not often receive enough attention in the world of chronic pain management, Roshi Joan Halifax talks about the intersection of compassion and empathy in chronic pain care. She is the founder and head teacher of the Upaya Institute and Zen Center, and a pioneer in the field of end-of-life care. Growing up as a sick kid, her journey began by being surrounded with people who are in pain and fighting cancer. This gave her the opportunity to talk with...


Episode 102 | Dr. Tor Wager, PhD: Pain And The Neuroscience Of Nociception

Pain goes beyond what we physically feel in our bodies. It reaches back into other aspects—from the mental to emotional. Take a deeper dive and explore the neuroscience of nociception and the perception of a painful stimulus with Dr. Tor Wager, director of the Cognitive and Affective Control Laboratory and Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He talks about the factors that influence pain as well as the facts or myths about pain as a learned...


Episode 101 | Sean Fargo: Reaching Beyond the Cocoon of Pain

Traveling around Asia and in Tibet for a little bit, meditation expert Sean Fargo became fascinated by the simplicity of the life of Buddhist monks. Sean found a Dallas master who took him under his wing and taught him a lot of mindfulness exercises like mindfulness of walking, mindfulness of standing, and mindfulness of breathing. The combination of simplicity and difficulty and the Dallas master’s way of being was peaceful, radiant, and loving led Sean to think about devoting the rest of...


Episode 100 | Carol Kugler Ellis: Living Beyond Pain After Being Diagnosed With Fibromyalgia

Nothing rounds up our understanding better about chronic pain than listening from a patient’s perspective. To have undergone through that pain with all the struggles and medications that come with it, a person could give the best account of dealing and overcoming all of it. Carol Kugler Ellis was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. As she shares her story, she imparts great wisdom and insight about chronic pain. Taking it head on, she clearly and honestly opened up about her pain, where she is...


Episode 99 | Leanne Ely: Anti-Inflammatory And Ketogenic Nutrition

Nutrition is often one of the first interventions that I recommend for pain relief, especially if you have pain from an inflammatory disease such as fibromyalgia, CRPS, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, or even headaches. Anti-inflammatory nutrition has a sound evidence base to support it, but it's often ignored when it comes to chronic pain care management. When it comes to implementing it into a physical therapy practice, nutrition is very important because most of the patients that...


Episode 98 | Dr. Steven George, DPT; Dr. Corey Simon, DPT and Dr. Adam Goode, DPT: The Non-Pharmacological Treatment Of Low Back Pain

The treatment of chronic pain has been placed under a microscope because of the fallout from the widespread opioid epidemic. As we turn away from using opioids as a treatment for long-term pain, what many of you want to know is what are the alternatives? What are the non-drug alternatives or the non-pharmacological treatment and pain management for conditions so common such as lower back pain? Three experts, Dr. Steven George, Dr. Corey Simon, and Dr. Adam Goode are licensed physical...


Episode 97 | Dr. David Butler, PT, EdD: Explain Pain And The Biopsychosocial Model

Pain is a feeling we’re conditioned to heal without fully understanding it first. This leads us to taking the wrong medication that we suffer more from in the end. Pain master David Butler explains not only what pain is but dives deeper into the psychosocial model of pain care. He wrote a book called Explain Pain where he went beyond the traditional way of explaining pain by tapping into the emotional, mental, and physical state of a person. David also provides examples that relate pain to...


Episode 96 | Dr. Jason Piken, DC: Understanding The Brain-Gut Connection

The chronic pain epidemic has opened up many doors as to the way practitioners approach pain and how the multiple systems of our body are intimately connected. It has also made us realize that this metaphor of the mind-body connection is no longer just a metaphor. Nowhere is this more exquisitely expressed than in the connection between our gut and our brain, or what is called the gut-brain axis (GBA). Your brain and gut are connected by an extensive network of neurons and a highway of...


Episode 95 | Dr. Lilian Dindo, PhD: How to Use Acceptance And Commitment Therapy To Treat Post-Surgical Pain And Opioid Use In Veterans

According to a report by the American Joint Replacement Registry, there were 860,000 hip and knee replacement surgeries in 2017. That means by the end of 2018, we will be over the 1 million mark in the United States. Thousands of these orthopedic surgeries are performed yearly within the Veterans Affairs. Patients are offered surgery as an option for pain relief and improved function. Chronic post-surgical pain is a common and debilitating problem that occurs in 5% to 85% of patients...


Episode 94 | Shelly Prosko, PT, PYT: How To Integrate Yoga Therapy Into A Modern Pain Practice

Each day, millions of yoga enthusiasts flock to yoga studios for their daily or the weekly practice, celebrating an ancient wellness tradition as well as a form of exercise and therapy that's been validated in many studies by modern pain science. If done under the guidance of a skilled instructor or therapist, it can bring several health benefits that help people cope with conditions including anxiety, depression, chronic pain, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, and chronic stress,...


Episode 93 | Dr. Kathleen Sluka, PT, PhD: A Mechanism-Based Approach To Pain Management

If you're someone who lives with pain and is trying to figure out the best therapies to utilize, you may be interested with Dr. Kathleen Sluka’s mechanism-based approach to pain management. Dr. Sluka is a neuroscientist and physical therapist who studies in neurobiology of chronic pain at the University of Iowa. She says the mechanism-based approach is also equally important if you're a practitioner who’s seeking a new and groundbreaking conceptual framework for evaluating the underlying...


Episode 92 | Dr. Tim Salomons, PhD: Exploring The Neuromatrix Theory Of Pain

Many researchers have devoted their entire career to exploring and learning more about what happens inside the brain when chronic pain develops and persists. Even though there is no one area for pain in the brain, neuroscientists have been able to recognize some key brain structures involved in the various components of the pain process. This is what is known as the neuromatrix theory of pain. Dr. Tim Salomons is Associate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Reading...