Free pain management course for Norwich arthritis sufferers

A charity has revealed it will be offering a free pain mangement course in Norwich for people with chronic arthritis pain.

The workshop has been organised by Arthritis Care after it recently held an osteoarthritis roadshow in the city, at which it heard from hundreds of people about the difficulities they have in coping with pain.

The news comes in the same week that a new study revealed people with chronic or terminal illnesses are at higher risk of taking their lives.

In May this year Norfolk coroner William Armstong gave permission for researchers to examine his district's suicide records for a five-year period from May 2006 to December 2010. The results revealed that 25 sucides, out of a total 259 – 9.7pc – involved a person with a diagnosed terminal or chronic illness - two of whom had arthritis.

The Challenging Pain course starts on Monday, September 19, and will be co-run by Chris Preston, who has arthritis and experiences chronic pain on a daily basis.

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The 54-year-old, who lives in Eaton in Norwich, was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in his 40s and went on one of the courses himself in 2005.

The grandfather-of-two said: 'Pain can develop in every day activities and affects everyone differently. My worst area is my neck and spine and twisting and moving can be a problem.

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'The course tries to get people to be more aware of their condition, what creates pain and what can improve their condition by helping them manage the pain a bit better through different techniques, for example exercises, eating healthily or relaxation techniques.

'All these things together put people back in control or in charge of their condition.

'I know of people who only go out once a year on an organised trip with other people who understand because they are in so much pain.'

The mobile Osteoarthritis Pain Information Point visited the city earlier this year and found that nine out of 10 people with osteoarthritis in Norwich are living with constant pain.

The course, which will be held at Age UK Norfolk's base in St Faith's Road, Old Catton, will start at 2pm and involves two two-and-a-half hour sessions over two weeks.

It will offer techniques to give a person a range of day-to-day skills which help manage pain better, including sections on pain management therapies, getting through the day, managing stress, relaxation and setting goals. It also looks at depression and ways of managing it or dealing with it better.

It will also give peope with arthritis an opportunity to meet with other people who are experiencing pain

To register for a place, call the Arthritis Care central england enquiry line on 0845 650 4400 , or visit the website at

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