Communicating Concern and Support for Loved Ones in Pain

How to maintain a successful relationships with family members and friends

Communicating Concern and Support for Loved Ones in Pain

The Institute of Medicine reports that 100 million Americans suffer from conditions that result in chronic pain. Chronic pain conditions are often difficult to diagnose and treat because each person’s pain is unique.

Communication becomes vital to achieving and maintaining successful relationships with family members and friends for patients living with pain. This isn’t always easy because, often times, patients struggle to find the necessary dialogue to describe pain and feelings while loved ones struggle with their reactions.


Communication, or the lack of it, stands out for many living with chronic illness and pain and for their loved ones. It is an issue that causes frustration for all parties and people with chronic illness and pain communicate differently than those who aren’t sick.

There is a reluctance to communicate physical and emotional symptoms. Further, chronically ill people often say they are feeling “well” or “okay” despite the fact they are hurting. Sometimes, there is no way to describe how someone is feeling and other times, the chronically ill person just wants to be left alone. These obstacles are challenging and result in the breakdown in communication.

Communicating with a Loved One in Pain

People who live with pain do best when loved ones express concern for their hurting and offer support that is genuinely needed. Here are five ways you can communicate concern and support.


Five Facts You Need to Help Loved Ones with Chronic Pain Conditions

Living with a chronic illness is difficult, learn what you can do to help

Five Facts You Need to Help Loved Ones with Chronic Pain Conditions

The challenges posed by illness and pain are obvious to fellow chronic illness suffers but healthy people don’t know what these are. In fact, most are often misinformed about the daily battle faced by people with chronic pain diseases.

By understanding how pain and illness work, you can better grasp what chronically illness patients go through on a daily basis. Here are five facts you to need to understand to help loved ones who live with chronic illness and pain.

1 – Illness and Pain are Exhausting. Constantly fighting to regain our health and living with symptoms and pain is hard work. Sometimes, the need to be and act like healthy people is so strong that we push ourselves to do what our bodies reasonably cannot do. More often, however, we try to find a middle ground between managing our health and gently challenging our bodies so we don’t fall in the pattern of overexerting ourselves. But that requires constant accessing and adjusting and that, too, can be both physically and mentally tiring.

How you can help: You can start by checking your own patience. You cannot expect someone who is dealing with daily pain and illness to just get over what they are going through. A chronic illness sufferer may not help out as often or have to cancel plans at the last minute but you can help by not taking this personally. Think about how lucky you are that you are still physically able to still enjoy the things you love.