When you are living with chronic pain like I am you want to explore all possible ways to manage your pain and improve your quality of life. One of the tools I’ve found helpful is hypnosis and self-hypnosis. For many doctors and clinicians, hypnosis, which emphasizes relaxed focused concentration, is now a viable tool to use against pain.
The exact way hypnosis works is not fully understood. There are, however, several possible ways that hypnosis could work to block, reduce, or eliminate pain. One is that hypnosis decreases the amount of pain signal that gets sent to the brain. Another way that hypnosis may work is that it redirects one’s attention to something other than the pain.
Still another way, is that hypnosis may help our mind to know that the pain is there, but not to feel it. Patients can learn to relax so deeply that their pain is reduced, or they can learn to put their hand to sleep and then transfer that numbness to a painful body part, thereby decreasing pain. There are many other hypnotic suggestions that help reduce pain as well.
A recent study suggests that hypnosis can actually change the way the brain processes pain signals, reducing the brain activity devoted to feelings of distress even while the pain sensations continue to be received (Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, 2004). According to Sebastian Schulz-Stubner, MD, Ph.D., an anesthesiologist at the University of Iowa, hypnosis is approximately 65-70 percent effective for pain management. Surgical teams can now prepare patients for surgery with hypnosis to reduce the needed anesthetic, simplify the procedure, reduce pain, and speed healing (Time, 2006).
To learn more about chronic pain management please check out our Articles page to download my free article The Need for Multidisciplinary Chronic Pain Treatment. To learn about two skill trainings coming up in Sacramento California on treatment srategies for professionals working with people living with chronic pain and coexisting disorders including addiction please Click Here.
You can learn more about the Addiction-Free Pain Management® System at our website www.addiction-free.com. If you are working with people in chronic pain or living with chronic pain yourself and want to learn how to develop a plan for managing the pain and coexisting psychological disorders including PTSD or addiction effectively please go to our Publications page and check out my book the Managing Pain and Coexisting Disorders: Using the Addiction-Free Pain Management® System. To purchase this book please Click Here.
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