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Table 1 Definitions

From: Arthritis and pain. Psychosocial aspects in the management of arthritis pain

Cognitive behavioral approaches Based on the premise that thought processes influence feelings and behaviors. Involves learning how to recognize destructive thoughts or ineffective responses, reflection, setting goals, and practicing new strategies
Coping The process of responding to, managing or contending with life stresses and difficulties. Coping strategies can be categorized in various ways, such as adaptive (effective) or maladaptive (ineffective). Types of coping include 'active or problem-based coping' (purposely learning and enacting behaviors designed to resolve problems), 'passive coping' (avoiding situations or giving up control), and 'catastrophizing' (exaggerating the perceived threat, focusing on the worst that can happen)
Coping skills training An educational intervention designed to enhance coping skills by identifying problems, practicing skills to resolve them, and evaluating the outcome. Typically compatible with cognitive behavioral approaches, but may not be synonymous depending on the user's theoretical and professional perspective
Helplessness A belief that nothing can be done to resolve a problem, characterized by emotional, motivational and cognitive deficits
Psychological distress Feelings of anxiety, depression, and/or emotions to an extent that is perceived as emotional suffering. May manifest as agitation, anger, tearfulness, social withdrawal or other outward signs
  'Anxiety' is a feeling of uneasiness, apprehension or dread. May be a rational response to stresses or danger, but is problematic when it escalates to a level interfering with participation in daily routines
  'Depression' is a feeling of sadness, melancholy or despair, ranging from a proportionate response to a personal loss, to profound depression, which may be an illness in itself
Self efficacy A belief that one can achieve specific goals through taking specific action; the level of confidence one has that the goal will be attained
Valued life activities A subset of life activities that have specific meaning or importance to the individual engaged in them. The value attached to activities varies across individuals and within individuals across the life span or in response to life demands