New Organization Brings Online Hope, Support and Resources to Chronic Pain Sufferers

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Hope Instilled is new interactive support center for people living with chronic pain

Hope Instilled, bringing hope and support to chronic pain sufferers

“I want chronic pain sufferers, no matter where they are in the world, to know they aren’t alone. Hope Instilled is here for them, my way of ‘giving back’ from my experiences. We want to be the light that guides them out of the darkness of pain."

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A quiet epidemic of people living with chronic pain costs the U.S. economy hundreds of billions of dollars annually in lost productivity. Left untallied is the hidden, unseen costs in pain sufferers’ lives from depression, isolation and inactivity.

Hope Instilled Inc., a new non-profit organization founded by a chronic pain sufferer of nearly three decades, is “an oasis from the darkness of pain” for those who cope with disabling pain that ripples through every strand of their lives. Through online resources, Facebook groups and an open web forum, chronic pain sufferers can support one another, learn about treatments and self-help options, and look to the future with renewed hope and optimism.

“Chronic pain can break apart families and friendships, end careers, and leave a trail of life devastation in its wake,” said Jory Pradjinski, founder of Hope Instilled Inc. “A person suffering from chronic pain finds that others can’t relate to their condition, so they stop talking about it. They internalize their pain, their illness, each new trauma, each life setback and put on an outward face, a mask of ‘I’m fine’ for everyone else to see.”

“The reality is that an inability to work, or participate in regular activities, causes a person to withdraw from relationships and life in general,” he continued. “As avoidance and survival become the norm, one’s emotions spiral downward into a dark place of fear, loneliness and even suicidal thoughts. It’s because they don’t have a support network.”

“Well, now they do … because I don’t want anyone else to go through what I did.”

The first part of dealing with chronic pain is understanding it. The Hope Instilled web site, http://www.HopeInstilled.org, has “Chronic Pain Definitions & Terms” with a glossary of related verbiage. The site’s “Healthy Body” section covers self-care, including foods that can increase or reduce pain and inflammation. “Alternative Treatments” covers 10 options for pain relief without medication.

The site’s “Support Forums” are places for open dialog about how chronic pain has affected participants’ lives and relationships, and for learning about how others keep moving forward.

Pradjinski’s journey through darkness began with a herniated low back disc in 1987. His path traversed five back surgeries and a bad car accident. Every incident broke down his body further. Pain grew constant and more intense. The low point was May 2008, when the ever-worsening pain forced Pradjinski to stop working. His feelings of failure compounded.

Those feelings manifested themselves in depression, anxiety and memory loss. His marriage of 20 years ended. He considered suicide. Through it all, he covered up the inner turmoil … because he had no support network.

“I receded into an anti-social state,” Pradjinski said. “I became a master of wearing a mask in public so no one would know who I really was. I was surviving, not living.”

Nevertheless, he clung to hope. Chiropractic treatment restored a semblance of normalcy. A subconscious decision told him to change other things. Fewer medications, and weight loss, followed. His perspective refreshed, and with it came a determination to help others.

Pradjinski’s goal for Hope Instilled Inc. is to provide other chronic pain sufferers “a path towards peace with pain.” Having someone to talk with openly, even online, can make a huge difference. Sometimes, just knowing that another person cares is enough.

Pradjinski plans to expand the web site’s offerings to encompass chronic illnesses and mental illness. Information will also be added about adaptive sports and veteran support resources. Additional information is available on the organization’s YouTube channel.

“I want chronic pain sufferers, no matter where they are in the world, to know they aren’t alone,” Pradjinski said. “Hope Instilled is here for them, my way of ‘giving back’ from my experiences. We want to be the light that guides them out of the darkness of pain, and into brighter, more fulfilling lives.”

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