It is estimated that 80% of us will experience back pain at some point of our lives, it is the most common cause of disability and the sixth most common reason for a visit to the doctor in Australia. Back pain is not a disease in itself, sometimes it is a symptoms of an injury, but up to 50% of the time,  back pain occurs without an injury as the spine's structures are sensitised due to other factors such as lack of sleep, anxiety, low mood and stress. In 14% of Australians the pain becomes a chronic problem and 10% will experience significant disability as a result of the persisting pain.

The Western Australian Health Department, Curtin University, University of Western Australia and the Musculoskeletal Network have developed a website to help people with musculoskeletal pain find reliable and practical  evidence-based information and skills to assist in managing their pain. The conditions targeted are low back pain, neck pain, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis complex regional pain, fibromyalgia and ankylosing spondylitis.

The website includes descriptions of pain types, making sense of pain, pacing and goal setting, mindfulness benefits and learning techniques  how to retrain the mind and body to restore more normal function and reduce pain. There is also a section describing the use of medications and procedures as a past of pain management.

The website also has a list of contacts and community options and links, including a link to the Australian Pain Society National Facility Directory ( pain management facilities in hospitals and primary care, both private and public)

Other resources for chronic pain sufferers are:

Pain Bytes 

Retrain Pain

TEDxAdelaide - Lorimer Mosely - Why Things Hurt ( available on youtube)

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