People with chronic pain may not be able to find relief, or total relief, from the pain through traditional medical treatments. Sometimes, the medications and therapies available cannot help relieve the pain.
However, research has shown that some people can tolerate their pain better, or manage it better, if they follow some sort of cognitive behavior therapy program. The goals of these programs are meant to help teach the patient how to cope with the pain rather than eliminating it.
If a patient is very afraid of the pain or of reinjuring him or herself, the patient may be behaving in such a way that may cause extra stress, causing the pain to be worse. This is anticipating the worse, or catastrophizing. Another example would be patients who learn visualization or relaxation techniques to use to try and level off the pain.
Receiving psychological therapy or counseling doesn't take away from the pain - it doesn't mean that the pain isn't real, but it is a good tool for many patients who experience the pain.