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How do you function when chronic pain is a part of your daily life? The UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness (UCSD CFM) at UC San Diego Health System offers a novel program to help people who are dealing with chronic pain “train their brains” to lessen their experience of discomfort and, in some cases, eliminate it. Called Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), this in-depth eight-week program helps participants learn to better manage their experience of pain through diverse techniques such as guided meditation, gentle yoga, and breathing exercises.
“Cancer patients and those who suffer from chronic conditions, such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease, often deal with cycles of pain that do not respond well to medications,” said Steven Hickman, PsyD, director of the Center for Mindfulness and assistant clinical professor in the UC San Diego Department of Psychiatry. “With MBSR, we teach students how to use their brain to work differently with pain and increase mobility.”
Steven Hickman, PsyD, director of the Center for Mindfulness
“I close my eyes and turn my attention inward and focus on the breath,” said Cohen Rooney. “I visualize that the air being breathed in brings with it healing and calm and the exhaling breath releases the pain and the tension. My body relaxes and a sense of tranquility follows.”
Hickman said that the MBSR techniques are helpful in regard to dealing with issues of food and eating, recovering from addiction, attention deficit disorder, anxiety and general stress. Patients and families who would like to learn more about MBSR or to participate in a class may call 858-334-4633 or visit the UCSD Center for Mindfulness website at http://mindfulness.ucsd.edu
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