Living with Chronic Pain

Compassion & Choices understands that severe chronic pain changes everything. Some days the pain or the fight to maintain health and well-being is overwhelming. Many of those who suffer chronic pain turn to our organization, because their suffering is so great, they wish to die. If this is why you are contacting us, ask to speak with a counselor, who will explain our Guidelines and determine which of our services you qualify for.

We encourage those suffering chronic pain to work with their primary care physician to develop ways to manage the pain, and to ask for a referral to pain specialists if the pain is not being controlled. Keeping a pain diary is an important step in this process.

There are many excellent organizations that provide information, support and referrals to those in chronic pain. A good resource is the American Pain Society: www.ampainsoc.org

Have The Conversation.

We can’t control everything about our death. But if we communicate effectively, we make it more likely that our wishes for the end of life will be known and respected. Simply completing an advance directive does not ensure it will be respected. Recent studies indicate the single most powerful thing a person can do to improve the chance for gentle dying is --- simply and courageously --- to talk about it.

Effective communication with those who will be called upon to make decisions on our behalf is key to the likelihood that our wishes are carried out. Compassion & Choices offers a Good to Go Toolkit and Good To Go Resource Guide that help you define your priorities, understand who you need to talk with and come up with ideas on how to get the conversation rolling. We've also provided state-specific advance directives free of charge, available for downloading.

It is never too early to get started.

compassion & choices
P.O. Box 101810 • Denver, CO 80250
p 800.247.7421 • f 866.312.2690

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