Pain Management

Pain Management Methods:
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Clinics

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction is an approach to self-care that will help one to cope with stress, pain and illness. The techniques that are taught will help an individual learn to focus awareness on body sensations, thoughts, and emotions in a nonjudgmental way. Through this practice, a person becomes able to explore their inner world of mind/body, recognize and mobilize their inner psychological resources and take better care of the self.

This course is modelled on the program developed by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. All instructors who teach at UHN have attended workshops conducted by Dr. Kabat-Zinn through the Centre for Mindfulness in Medicine and Society.

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program For Coping with Stress and Anxiety
Location: Princess Margaret Hospital
Instructor: Dr. T. Melnyk
This program is offered for patients with cancer or their family members. It is based on the Mindfulness Stress Reduction Program developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn. This program is intended to help those diagnosed with cancer to better manage the stress and anxiety that comes with illness. It also helps patients better cope with cancer pain. Family members are welcome to participate, because they may struggle with issues related to being caregivers; namely, anxiety, burnout, depression, and general coping. Materials will be provided for this program. Participants will receive guided CD’s for the practice of body scan, gentle yoga, and sitting meditation. The program takes a “hands on approach”; there will be much opportunity to practice the various techniques in the group. Participants are encouraged to discuss their experiences, but are free to disclose as much or as little of their cancer experience as they feel comfortable.

Orientation to this program is done at the PMH in the department of Psychosocial Oncology.

To register for a video orientation, please call 416-946-4501 extension 5405.

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Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction for Artists
Dr. Tatiana Melnyk – Psychiatrist and JoAnne Hunter – Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
In addition to the stressors of every day life, you as an artist may face some unique pressures. The external demands of promoting one’s work, facing critique, auditioning, as well as financial pressures are sources of stress and worry. Ageing, injury, and illness may decrease or limit an artist’s ability to work. You may begin to doubt your worth or the value of your creative work. Anxiety, depression, and addictive behaviour can be end products of chronic stress, or may add to the difficulties the artist is facing.

This program of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction is offered throughout the year, at the Artist’s Health Centre, 3rd floor, West Wing of the Toronto Western Hospital at 399 Dundas Street (Nassau entrance). You may call the Artist’s Health Centre to enquire about the next available time at 416 603- 5263.

To enroll:

  1. All participants are encouraged to view a 45-minute video about MBSR. The video features Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD, the founder of MBSR in North America. It is an excellent introduction to this program. Please call the Artist’s Health Center reception at 416-603-5263 to book this.
  2. If you are interested in attending the program after viewing the video, you will need to phone and schedule an appointment for an intake interview with Jo Anne Hunter. Please call 416-603-5263 to book your appointment. The interview will consist of information gathering to help us understand your needs and goals as well as clarify any questions you may have.

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Mindful Cognitive - Behaviour Therapy Program Anxiety Clinic
Location: Toronto Western Hospital
Instructors: Dr. J. Reichmann, MD, FRCP, Beta Leung, MA, OT and Paul Freedman, MSW, RSW
Cost: $50.00
This is a 10 - week course offered through the Toronto Western Hospital Community Mental Health Program for people who suffer from stress, anxiety and mood related conditions. The course is modelled after the MBSR program and integrates the practice of mindfulness meditation with cognitive behaviour therapy. Cognitive-behaviour therapy involves learning to change your thinking, as well as your behaviour, in order to change the way you feel.

In this program, you will learn how to do this in a gradual 5-step process that will allow you to better manage your negative thinking patterns. The practice of mindfulness meditation enables you to let go of the past, worry less about the future, and live more fully in the present moment. You will learn a variety of meditation skills that help you to achieve this. In scientific studies, both mindfulness meditation and cognitive-behaviour therapy have been shown, individually, to be highly effective in decreasing anxiety and mood related symptoms. This course integrates these two approaches and utilizes the strengths of each in order to more effectively facilitate the other. Home assignments, handouts, and CDs are provided to assist you in developing these skills.

To enroll: Have your family physician or a mental health professional with whom you are currently working, mail or fax us a referral. A referral form is available by calling the program at 416-603-5747.

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The MBSR Clinic
Location: Toronto General Hospital
Time: Monday morning, Monday afternoon or Wednesday evening
Instructors: Dr. Susan Abbey and Sarah Greenwood, RN, BScN
Cost: $75.00
The Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program at Toronto General Hospital is an eight-week course offered to patients, family members and staff who are experiencing a wide variety of symptoms, which cause life distress. It helps bring awareness to everyday living by developing an increased awareness of ourselves and our relationship to the world. The MBSR program can be beneficial to those experiencing:

Major Medical Illnesses: arthritis, cancer, chronic pain, dialysis, fibromyalgia, GI problems, heart disease, high blood pressure, HIV Infection, lung disease, renal disease, transplantation

Mental Health Issues: anxiety. depression, eating disorders
Significant Stressors: caregiver stress, job or family stress, occupational stress
Common Physical Complaints: headaches and sleep disturbances
The course is offered at three separate times: Monday morning, Monday afternoon and Wednesday evening. This program is suited to individuals who want to be actively involved in enhancing your lives and effectively handling life’s changes.

To enroll: Eligible participants may be self referred, or referred by a staff member or physician. Those interested should call 416- 340-4452 and you will be sent an information package for potential participants, a pamphlet describing the program and an application form to complete and return. You will receive a telephone call inviting you to attend the next available information and intake session. The cost of the course is $75.00 for materials. Operating costs for the program are funded through OHIP and University Health Network.

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Graduate Group for Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Participants
Location: Toronto General Hospital, Fujisawa Conference Room, NCSB 11C- Room 1135
Time: Every Thursday evening, 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Instructor: Sarah Greenwood RN; BScN
This group is designed to welcome all graduates of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Programs at UHN who would like to enhance your practice by participating in a group. There is no fee for this group. You may attend as often or as little as you like.

To enroll: If you have graduated from any MBSR program at UHN, please drop in and introduce yourself to the leader and to the group. You may also call 416-340-3962 to learn more about the graduate group.

Click here Icon: Acrobat for a brochure of the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Clinics.

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