Dr. David B. Adams – Psychological Blog

Psychology of Injury, Pain, Anxiety and Depression


 “Self-Diagnosis: Trust the Patient”  At times there appears to be a sprain-strain yearbook in which the subjective complaints of the patient are set aside.  Only objective findings are pursued.  In the absence of these objective findings, there is little if any credibility accorded to the patient’s fears that “something is really wrong, and they’re missing …

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Grieving: “A routine part of a psychological exam, at least my own, is to determine if the patient’s problems may be compounded by other and similar events.  One such event is the concept of loss. It is obvious that an injury results in loss of income, loss of mobility, loss of daily productive activities and …

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 “Golden Opportunity”    “In general, lost time is lost money to the average person.  In turn, they have the time for the transposition of physical complaints for financial benefit.  One patient referred to her amputation as “selling my body parts.”  In some sense, this is a readily understood opportunity.” Advertisers are well aware of their …

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Self-Deception – In psychoanalytic theory, a model that is rarely discussed today, is the concept of “regression in the service of the ego. “ This sounds weighty, but bear with me:  When we are under severe duress, stress, demand, to protect our emotional well being (our ego) we retreat to very primitive ways of thinking.  This …

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 “Trust and Recovery” “The dictionary definition of “trust is an assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something; one in which confidence is placed.”    That is what we request, require and expect a patient to experience.  The patient is seeing you because s/he trusts that you are invested in …

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Empathy Sympathy

Empathy vs. Sympathy Empathy, sympathy and compassion are often poorly understood, inadequately defined and easily confused. …
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Related to injury? I asked a patient how she was coping with pain. She stated that she continued to have significant neck, …
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Hopelessness & Suicide

A key element in suicidal behavior is the feeling of helplessness, which arises from prolonged periods of extreme stress …
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