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In this episode, Dr. David Hanscom continues his discussion with pain psychologist Les Aria about treating chronic pain. He shares his approach to treating patients based on the Polyvagal Theory. He explains that pain is the body’s neurophysiologic response to feeling unsafe. He discusses how he works with patients to get them to calm down the nervous system and commit to a daily program of dealing with their autonomic physiologic responses. He elaborates the specific techniques he uses to help them accomplish this.
Les Aria, PhD is a Pain Psychologist, who has been practicing for the past 16 years with Kaiser Permanente Medical Group, Inc. He served as the Lead Pain Psychologist for Kaiser Northern California to help incorporate modern pain science, mindfulness and Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT). Les specializes in treating psychophysiological disorders/persistent pain and medically unexplained problems. His passion for mind body interventions promote a unique style to help patients relate differently to their suffering, and thereby shifting them into pain recovery and wellness.