In this powerful workbook for teens, pediatric pain specialist Rachel Zoffness offers evidence-based strategies to help you turn the volume down on chronic pain and illness and get back to living your life.
Living with chronic pain and illness can be difficult, scary, and sometimes lonely. But if you’re one of the millions of teens who suffer from chronic pain, you should know that there are real tools you can use now to help you feel better. Blending cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), this workbook provides proven-effective solutions to help you take control of your pain and get back to being you!
With this powerful and easy-to-use workbook, you’ll learn how pain affects both your mind and body, how negative emotions can make pain worse, and strategies to help you turn the volume down on your pain, so you can go back to enjoying activities that you love. You’ll also learn mindfulness and relaxation exercises, including belly breathing and body scan to help manage pain in the moment.
The exercises and strategies in this book are rooted in research, fun to learn, and easy to practice. And the best part? You can carry them with you wherever you go. Take them out into the world and take charge of your pain—and your life!
Rachel Zoffness, PhD, is a clinical psychologist, medical consultant, educator, and author specializing in chronic pain, medical illness, and injury. She provides cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to teens and adults, provides lectures and trainings, and serves as a consultant to hospitals and health professionals. Zoffness—also known as ‘Dr. Z’—teaches at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine, providing pain neuroscience education to medical residents and interns. She was trained at Brown; Columbia; the University of California, San Diego; San Diego State University; the New York University Child Study Center; Mount Sinai West; and the Mindful Center.
Zoffness taught undergraduate psychology courses at San Diego State University, supervised therapists-in-training at the Wright Institute Berkeley Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Clinic, and has published extensively on evidence-based therapies. She serves on the steering committee of the American Association of Pain Psychology (AAPP), founded AAPP’s pediatric division, and is a member of the East Bay Pediatrician’s Journal Club. She collaborates with UCSF’s Pediatric Brain Center, and Pain and Palliative Care Clinic; Stanford’s Pediatric Pain Management Clinic; the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine; and consults on the development of international pain programs. When not seeing patients, Rachel can typically be found hiking and chasing butterflies.
Foreword writer Elliot J. Krane, MD, is a graduate of the University of Arizona College of Medicine, and completed his medical training in pediatrics and anesthesiology at Massachusetts General Hospital, and Boston Children’s Hospital. He has held faculty positions at the University of Washington and Seattle Children’s Hospital, where he and his colleague Donald C. Tyler, MD, started the first pain clinic for children in the US.
“This workbook is stronger and more effective than any medication I know of for treating chronic pain.” —L. Stephen Long, MD, pediatric anesthesiologist; medical director of complex pain, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland
~L. Stephen Long, MD
“Although there are a few excellent resources for parents on how to understand and help their child with chronic pain, until the publication of this book, there were no equivalent books for the teens themselves struggling with this problem. This practical workbook by a highly experienced clinician helps reframe chronic pain for teens who are struggling with it, and offers accessible strategies that they can use to help themselves. Although its tone is casual and friendly, the advice offered is highly sophisticated and evidence-based without being pedantic. One can almost hear Dr. Z’s soothing, optimistic, and experienced voice emerge from its pages saying, ‘Here are things you can do to help yourself. We can get through this.’ Words that are truly welcome to the frustrated, often hopeless teens struggling with chronic pain. It contains numerous scenarios, examples, and scripts that ring true, and are easily adaptable to the situations of most children and their families. The additional materials that can be downloaded to support this volume are an added bonus. One can foresee that the use of this workbook will soon be a standard recommendation by pediatric pain clinics across the country, and it will be a valuable resource for teens in the throes of this challenging problem.” —Neil L. Schechter, MD, director of the Chronic Pain Clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital; associate professor in the department of anesthesiology at Harvard Medical School; and coeditor of Pain in Infants, Children, and Adolescents
~Neil L. Schechter, MD
“This phenomenal workbook aimed at strategies for empowering teens with chronic pain to take control of their path toward well-being is based on both clinical experience and a foundation in science. Rachel Zoffness has created a strong self-help workbook that is a ‘must-read’ and ‘must-use’ for all youth suffering from chronic pain. It is a highly impactful workbook for any teen with chronic pain and for their parents.” —Lonnie Zeltzer, MD, former director of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) pediatric pain and palliative care program; UCLA distinguished professor in the department of pediatrics, anesthesiology, psychiatry, and biobehavioral sciences; pain researcher; and author
~Lonnie Zeltzer, MD
“I was sure that I would spend the rest of my life miserable with migraines, yet you taught me how to cope with pain rather than wallow in it. I can’t express in words how much you helped me. You gave me the hope to start striving to live my life with or without chronic migraines.” —Teen chronic pain survivor and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) program graduate
~Teen chronic pain survivor
“Rachel Zoffness’s workbook is an engaging how-to manual for teens struggling with chronic pain. She presents concepts in a down-to-earth way that will help youths master the techniques necessary to improve their function, decrease their pain, and, most importantly, get their lives back. It reinforces many of the themes we emphasize in our clinics. It will be a great resource for our patients!” —William T. Zempsky, MD, MPH, head of the division of pain and palliative medicine at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, and professor in the department of pediatrics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine
~William T. Zempsky, MD, MPH
“This is a terrific and engaging workbook for teens with chronic pain that provides instruction in core behavioral and cognitive skills for pain management. Rachel Zoffness masterfully uses humor and patient stories that should appeal to teens who are either using this workbook independently or with a therapist. It is a must-have addition to the pain practitioner’s library.” —Tonya M. Palermo, PhD, professor in the department of anesthesiology and pain medicine at the University of Washington; clinical psychologist; author of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Chronic Pain in Children and Adolescents; and coauthor of Managing Your Child’s Chronic Pain
~Tonya M. Palermo, PhD
“This workbook is an outstanding and much-needed self-help guide for youth who are suffering from chronic pain. Dr. Z uses teen-friendly language to explain how the body feels pain, and to teach ways to manage pain and help teens take charge of their lives. Each chapter builds new coping skills with engaging exercises and examples. There are so many choices to pick from so that teens should have no trouble finding their own favorite set of skills! Parents and pain clinicians will undoubtedly learn a lot from this workbook as well.” —Susmita Kashikar-Zuck, PhD, professor in the department of pediatrics at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center; licensed clinical psychologist; and nationally recognized researcher in pediatric pain
~Susmita Kashikar-Zuck, PhD
“Every teen who struggles with chronic pain and illness will find something helpful in The Chronic Pain and Illness Workbook for Teens. The author speaks to teens with understanding and compassion while presenting practical and effective methods to help teens suffer less. I highly recommend this highly readable book on a topic that receives too little attention.” —Michael A. Tompkins, PhD, ABPP, codirector of the San Francisco Bay Area Center for Cognitive Therapy; assistant clinical professor in the department of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley; and coauthor of The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook for Teens
~Michael A. Tompkins, PhD, ABPP
“Teenagers have a hard time dealing with chronic pain. This interactive, educational workbook will significantly help teens understand and manage their pain. It is a unique and valuable resource.” —Myles B. Abbott, MD, general pediatrician in Berkeley and Orinda, CA; clinical professor in the department of pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine; and former board member of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Board of Pediatrics
~Myles B. Abbott, MD
“What a fantastic resource for anyone caught in the miserable ‘stuckness’ of chronic pain! With her innately fearless, humorous, and eminently readable voice, Dr. Z leads her readers on the journey to discovering their own fearlessness in the face of debilitating pain.” —David Becker, MD, MA, LMFT, behavioral pediatrician; clinical professor in the UCSF department of pediatrics; and co-medical director of the UCSF IP3 Pain Management Clinic