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What to Expect | Overview

When held in person, the Comfort Ability starts promptly at 10:00 a.m. and ends at 5:00 p.m. Families should arrive between 9:15 and 9:45 a.m. to allow time for check-in.

Patients and their parents or caregivers will then start the day together, but will spend a majority of the day in separate groups. There will be a lunch break from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m., and families are welcome to bring their own lunch or visit one of the restaurants in the Longwood Medical Area.

During the day, we will introduce children and adolescents to mind-body pain management strategies such as guided imagery, progressive muscle relaxation and biofeedback. They will have an opportunity to practice these skills in a group setting. They will 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, adolescents will have an opportunity to share with peers about their pain experiences and learn from others.

Parents and caregivers learn strategies to help in the management of their child's chronic pain, new approaches for supporting their child's function at home and school and about the mind-body and cognitive behavioral skills their children are being taught so they can reinforce progress at home.

The Virtual Comfort Ability Workshop covers the same topics and skills as the in-person workshop. However, sessions are held on separate days for parents and adolescents.