Monday, 4 December 2017

Sleeping with Pain by Dr Sue Peacock

Sleeping with Pain: Strategies for a restful night from a pain management expert
By Dr Sue Peacock
Published by Ann Jaloba Publishing (10 December 2016)
I received a copy of the book from the author

Publisher's description
A practical guide to help anyone who finds it difficult to sleep because of pain. Dr Sue Peacock takes you through a step by step system for getting a good night's rest.

My verdict
I don't publicise very often that I have a chronic pain condition, although I did write a blog post about it earlier this year (click here) - one of my most popular blog posts. I don't sleep that well, and occasionally struggle to get to sleep due to pain, and often wake unrefreshed in the mornings. New research from Mintel revealed that one in five Brits complain that constant pain interferes with their sleep, so I'm clearly not alone.

Sleeping with Pain was an ideal book for me to read. Dr Sue Peacock is a consultant health psychologist and head of The Health Psychology Service at Milton Keynes Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. So she should certainly know her 'stuff'.

The book is split into several chapters. 'How does pain affect sleep?' and 'Understanding your pain' provide background into the link between chronic pain and insomnia. 'Understanding the sleep cycle' explains the different states of sleep to help the reader understand their own sleep patterns. There is also a chapter on insomnia itself. This is then followed by practical ways to improve sleep, with case studies, questionnaires and goal setting. The book takes a very practical approach, with tips on re-progamming sleep patterns and self-hypnosis for pain.

Has it helped? That's a difficult question to answer as my pain comes and goes - and so does my ability to sleep well. I've been reading the book for a few months and have tried some of the exercises and answered the questionnaires. I definitely now know how to get myself into a more relaxed state if I'm struggling to get to sleep. Some of the tips were quite obvious to me, but there were also some new ideas.

If you suffer from chronic pain with insomnia, and want a simple practical approach, it may be worth giving this book a try. There are no guarantees of any results though, and always remember that if you're suffering with relentless chronic pain or insomnia you should see your doctor for advice.

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