Are You Overwhelmed Trying To Manage Chronic Illness or Pain?
Living with a chronic illness or debilitating pain can be a stressful, exhausting, and isolating experience. You might feel hopeless, helpless, and ineffective, especially if your condition is making it hard for you to maintain a normal routine and care for yourself and your family.
People Struggling With Chronic Pain Or Illness Often:
Experience fear and uncertainty, wondering what's going to happen and if they'll be okay
Feel unsure of how to talk with their family, friends or colleagues about their condition, especially if they don't want anyone to worry
Try to hide frustration while struggling to understand medical jargon and manage doctor appointments, medications, and treatments
Turn to prescription drugs or alcohol in an attempt to mitigate stress and numb out mental, emotional, and physical pain
Feel anxious and/or depressed and desperate for relief—yearning for some semblance of a normal life
Millions Of People Understand Your Pain
More than 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain, with one out of 10 people experiencing pain every day for three months or more. About half of all American adults have had one or more chronic health condition, such as heart disease, cancer, stroke, type 2 diabetes, Lyme disease, or arthritis, to name a few.
Pain and fatigue are often signs that something is wrong, however, so many of us are taught to either ignore symptoms or push through them, which inevitably makes us feel worse. Genetics, environmental factors, heightened stress, and lack of self-care can also lead to illness. Many individuals also struggle with poor eating and sleeping patterns, mental health issues, persistent stress, chronic fatigue syndrome. Unresolved trauma, stress, and intense emotions can manifest physically—signaling to us that it's time to slow down and take care of our whole selves—mind, body, and spirit.
As someone who has dealt with pain, and as a therapist who specializes in providing therapeutic care for people with chronic conditions, I know both personally and professionally that your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing can be improved. With guidance, you can learn how to deal with anxiety, stress, uncertainty, and grief while discovering what you need to feel better in the long-run.
Chronic Illness Counseling Provides You With Support, Practical Guidance, And Relief
Chronic illness and pain counseling can be extremely effective. In supportive, calming, and confidential therapy sessions, you'll have a safe place to express anything and everything that is coming up for you. Profound healing and relief can come from sharing your experience with someone who understands what you're going through. Together, we'll discover what it is that you need to feel more calm, centered, and joyful in all aspects of your life.
Everyone experiences the effects of chronic disease in a different way, which is why we'll work collaboratively to develop a therapy plan that best addresses, supports, and values your specific condition, needs, and therapy goals. Depression and anxiety are very common when dealing with a chronic health condition. If you're suffering from either or both, we can devise a depression and anxiety treatment strategy so you can work through difficult thoughts and feelings and experience sustained relief. We can also address feelings of anger and/or grief, which are very common when dealing with pain and illness. As you resolve difficult feelings, you can change the relationship that you have with your body and value and love it as it begins to heal.
I believe in pain management and treating symptoms, but I also believe that the most comprehensive healing comes from treating the whole person—mind, body, and spirit. Once you feel more stable, we can begin deeper work that promotes long-term healing, personal discoveries, and sustainable relief. Using mindfulness techniques and other holistic approaches to healing, you can come to a place of acceptance, increase self-compassion, learn healthy coping skills, and develop self-care strategies that can improve all aspects of your well-being.
Sessions are also a place for you to problem solve. We will explore how you can effectively talk with the important people in your life about your condition without feeling overwhelmed or frightened. You can also learn how to self-advocate and navigate complicated medical jargon so you can get your needs met and make empowered, thoughtful decisions for yourself, your health and your family.
We all have the capacity to heal—it's often just a matter of discovering what works specifically for each of us. I believe that it is possible to learn how to live with a chronic illness or condition in ways that don't consume or define you. With compassionate support and practical guidance, you can change your relationship with your body, take action that promotes mental, emotional and physical healing, and uncover what you need to feel better.
You still may wonder if chronic disease and pain therapy is right for you...
I'm already overwhelmed with doctor visits and treatments. I don't know how I would manage another weekly appointment.
While it's important to take care of your body, it is equally important to take care of your mind, heart, and emotions. And, therapy may end up being your most important, nourishing, and valuable appointment of the week. Chronic illness counseling sessions are a safe place for you to explore everything that's going on for you and bring it all together. Research shows that there is a connection between stress and chronic illness and pain. Together, we will explore techniques that mitigate stress and promote whole body healing.
I don't have a mental health disorder; the problem is with my body.
You don't have to have a mental health condition to enjoy the benefits of therapy. In fact, many people come to therapy to better understand, navigate, and heal from a broad range of particularly challenging situations. In a supportive, warm therapeutic relationship, I can help you process what's happening. We can also address any feelings of anxiety and/or depression you may have, which are very common when dealing with a chronic condition.
My pain and/or condition isn't that bad. Do I really need a chronic illness therapist?
Sometimes—no matter how strong we are—we need extra support and care. What you're going through is challenging, and relief can come from sharing your experience in a safe and caring relationship. It also often takes a team effort in managing care. With your permission, I can consult with other members of your medical team so you will receive the most comprehensive and effective care possible.
You Can Reclaim Agency Over Your Life
If you're struggling with a chronic condition in the Hamptons, North Fork or South Fork, NY, or in the surrounding areas, I invite you to call my office at 212-888-2888 for a free phone consultation. I'm happy to discuss your specific needs and answer any questions you have about chronic illness counseling and my practice.