Hypnotherapy for Chronic Pain Management: How It Works And What You Need to Know
Many individuals deal with chronic pain on a daily basis. It lingers and it persists while you can’t seem to figure out what is causing it. It is estimated that in Canada approximately 18.9% of individuals over the age of 18 live with chronic pain that is long standing and sometimes severe. It can affect your life negatively in many ways on a professional, family and personal level. People living with chronic pain are at an increased risk of developing anxiety and depression along with symptoms of sleep deprivation. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis has been shown to be very effective in some cases at managing chronic pain symptoms. It can be a suitable alternative for some. This article aims to inform you on how hypnosis can potentially help with chronic pain. In addition, what steps do you need to take in order to proceed safely?
There are many documented benefits of using hypnosis and self-hypnosis for a variety of challenges you might be facing. The mind is very powerful and we are only beginning to scratch the surface of its inner functioning. Mounting scientific evidence is producing some very significant and promising results that support the use of hypnosis for the management of chronic pain including fibromyalgia. If traditional interventions are not quite working for you, hypnosis and self-hypnosis might be a suitable avenue. It is important that you consult with your family doctor before you decide to go this route. You should make your doctor aware that you are considering hypnosis and your doctor should rule out any other underlying cause before they agree for you to proceed. All hypnotherapists require a doctor's note or written permission in order to proceed with treatment. You want to make absolutely sure that what you are eliminating is chronic pain and not something more serious that should be addressed with appropriate medical treatment. Once you get the “OK” for trying hypnotherapy and practicing self-hypnosis regularly, it can significantly reduce chronic pain in most individuals.
Chronic Pain: How To Cope With Your Symptoms Chronic Pain can be defined as pain that persists beyond the expected period of healing. Once diagnosed, it is important to manage the condition as best as possible. You may feel overwhelmed, but by accepting the situation and making positive life changes, it can greatly help your symptoms and give you a new lease on life.
Simple lifestyle changes are important in order not to exacerbate symptoms and to lessen future pain. Reducing your stress and increasing exercise for natural endorphin release will improve your symptoms. Changing your diet and making an effort to eat as healthy as possible has also been shown to improve symptoms. In addition, drinking less alcohol or abstaining will not only improve your quality of life but will also help you sleep better. Drinking alcohol to manage your pain will only make your sleep worse, compounding the situation into an even worse scenario later on. If you smoke, it’s also advised that you stop as it can worsen chronic pain symptoms as well as create other health problems in future.
Getting massages can help with muscle tension and reducing stress. This will help with your pain as a result. It’s also encouraged to join a local support group so you can meet and learn from others in a similar situation. You will feel less alone in the process as well as pick up some important tips on how to cope with your symptoms.
Hypnotherapy & Self-Hypnosis Can Help You Manage Your Chronic Pain Better Hypnotherapy can be an effective way to manage your chronic pain. Although it is not known exactly how it works, practicing self-hypnosis and mindfulness techniques will greatly reduce your stress and anxiety. This will in-turn help significantly reduce your chronic pain symptoms.
A study published in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis in 2007 performed a cross-comparison of 13 controlled trials of other pain studies conducted in the past. All studies evaluated the use of hypnosis for the management of cancer pain, low-back pain, arthritis pain, temporomandibular pain, fibromyalgia, disability-related pain and other mixed chronic pain problems. The study concluded that the efficacy of hypnosis had consistently shown to demonstrate a significant reduction in pain in many different forms of chronic pain. Although exact mechanisms of action were not evaluated, clinical symptoms were significantly reduced. Further investigation is warranted, but these findings strongly support the use of hypnosis as an alternative form of pain management.
If you have any questions, interested in trying out a session, or getting a personalized self-hypnosis tape made, please reach out and feel free to send me an e-mail.
Written By: Sebastian Di Cesare PhD, CHt - a research scientist & practicing Certified Hypnotherapist based in Vancouver, Canada.