Positive Psychology interventions reduces pain and fear of movement in arthritis patients.
A recent study published in The Journal of Positive Psychology, May 2019 points to the potential importance for both practitioners and patients in integrating practices from Positive Psychology into our management of pain.
In December, 2018 a team from the departments of Psychology and the Department of Orthopaedics at Dunedin University, New Zealand set out to study the potential influence of Mindful meditation and gratitude interventions from the field of Positive Psychology on those suffering from arthritic pain.
Researchers, Swain, Thompson et al proposed that their intervention would decrease pain anxiety, intensity and interference, fear of movement, and increased pain self-efficacy for a group of self-referred people with arthritis. Their protocol consisted of four once-weekly programmes which included animated guides, audio guided mindfulness exercises and a gratitude programme. One hundred and fifty-one people enrolled in the study. Data from 81 people who completed the trial and questionnaires was analysed. Pain anxiety, pain interference, pain intensity, fear of movement and pain self-efficacy were all improved by the intervention as the researchers suspected.
The researchers concluded that this pilot study supports the role of both gratitude and mindfulness being appropriate interventions for physical health conditions and demonstrates how they can be used in combination.