The Comfort Ability

The Comfort Ability is a fun and interactive one-day program to help children ages 10 to 17 and their parents or caregivers learn how to better manage chronic pain. The program is run by staff psychologists from Pain Treatment Services at Boston Children's Hospital and introduces cognitive-behavioral and bio-behavioral pain management strategies. The Comfort Ability emphasizes the mind-body connection and offers non-invasive and non-pharmaceutical strategies for improved pain management.

Our approach to pain management

While youths and their parents or caregivers start off the day together, most of the day is spent in separate groups. Children are introduced to bio-behavioral pain management strategies, such as guided imagery, progressive muscle relaxation and biofeedback. They have an opportunity to practice these skills in a group setting. They also learn about how pain functions in the body, receive an introduction to cognitive-behavioral therapy strategies and participate in a group art project. Additionally, they will have an opportunity to share with peers about their pain experiences and learn from others.

In their group, parents and caregivers learn about adaptive management of chronic pain, new strategies for supporting their child at home and school, and the bio-behavioral and cognitive-behavioral skills their children are being taught. The Comfort Ability runs monthly, with registration on a rolling basis. The cost for the program is $120, which includes youth participation and up to two caregivers. This service is not covered by insurance, and financial assistance is available.