Education is the foundation of Neuroplastic treatment of persistent pain. Many of the approaches needed to perform this treatment require a knowledge of how the brain works as a seven dimensional organ. It can be understood from the different perspectives of anatomy, physiology, cells, synapses, circuitry, regional functions and neuroplasticity. The most important thing to remember is that the brain is an incredibly accessible organ that everyone uses seamlessly throughout their lives. Additionally, we rely upon it to function automatically and to process an astonishing amount of information sent to it from the peripheral body, while using that information to direct the body to do everything from move in a purposeful manner to lower or raise the rate of a heartbeat. Every moment of our lives our brains are changing based upon this input, and our brains direct our peripheral bodies to change, as well. This change, in response to incoming data and outgoing direction is neuroplasticity. It is a physical activity involving the development and integration of new nerve cells into existing networks, the making and breaking of new and old connections and circuits, the creation and resolution of inflammatory responses, the management of the blood-brain barrier, the assignment of nerve cells to specific functions, and the maintenance of energy in both the brain and the body. It is at this level of brain function, this neuroplastic change, where the disease of persistent pain has taken hold and it is by understanding and exploiting neuroplasticity that these changes can be reversed.
This section of the website is initially divided into professional and patient education, but an attempt has been made to make the information in either part useful to both groups. This should be seen as an introduction to the treatment, that can be worked on over time with practitioners and their patients. The treatment requires active participation by patients, breaks the paradigm of passive treatments and shifts to an interactive model of care. M.I.R.R.O.R. is the acronym that represents the steps necessary to use the brain’s ability to control persistent pain and to reverse the centralization of pain persistence. The simple ways we can access the brain are explained with focus on thoughts, images, sensations, memories, soothing emotions, movement and beliefs. Finally, we coin a new term, Cerebrosomia, to detail, discuss and utilize the unity of brain and peripheral body in persistent pain treatment.