Physiotherapists live and breathe pain and dysfunction; it is what drives the want to help and empower patients. Pain is complex, pain is contextual. It is impacted by beliefs, knowledge and expectations of pain, as well as social and work environments.
The physiotherapy world, consumed by negative pain experiences, is currently framed by the biopsychosocial model. This model acknowledges three domains for pain - biological, psychological and social – yet grapples to comprehend, motivate or measure the psycho-social elements.
A conceptually-updated, positive psychology impassioned biopsychosocial framework is evolving. This framework delivers a genuine understanding of the tangible human pain experience, unifying the sciences of physiotherapy and positive psychology, and is currently in the experimental stage.
Providing a beautifully blended approach to pain and dysfunction, the framework fosters a narrative-driven learning experience. Based on Self-Determination Theory, Broaden and Build Theory and VIA Character Strengths, it enables the physiotherapist crucial insight into the patient’s pain story.
Qualitative data measuring the patient’s well-being growth is being collected, where preliminary findings will be presented with recommendations for further research. This values-driven well-being approach to pain serves to educate and embolden each patient’s evolution, yet also builds and inspires well-being literacy in the process.