• Alex Jarvis

Hypnosis and Pain Management



You've loved doing various activities and spending time with family. But all that changed because of this constant knee pain. It keeps you awake all night and stops you from living the life you once enjoyed.

Does this sound familiar?

Acute and Chronic pain

Acute pain begins suddenly, lasts a short time, and goes away as the body heals. This can be felt after surgery, or if there's a broken bone, kidney stone, infected tooth.

Chronic pain is one that lasts for 3 months or longer, which means it extends beyond the typical healing period for an injury or illness. When it lingers beyond 3 months, pain can be considered a disease in its own right. Chronic pain may come from a health condition such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, or migraine.

It's hard to live with any type of pain. It can cause many other issues. They:

  • hinder your daily routine/activities

  • disrupt your sleep/eating habits

  • make it difficult to continue your work

  • may be related to mood disorder (i.e. depression and anxiety)

Research suggests that 30-50% of people with chronic pain also struggle with depression and anxiety. Chronic pain is not only a physical condition, but an emotional one as well, which has a huge impact on a person's moods and thoughts.

Pain and Depression

It can be difficult to assess whether chronic pain has led to depression, or the other way around. People with chronic pain are 3 times more likely to have depression or anxiety, and people with depression are 3 times as likely to develop chronic pain. Oftentimes, depression can cause unexplained pain like back pain or headaches, and those who are depressed struggle to maintain or improve physical health. Moreover, chronic pain may lead to feelings of worthlessness or increased stress related to depression. Altogether these create a cycle where one condition worsens the other.

Hersimren Basi, MD, a pain management specialist, says, “For example, we know that simply having a bad headache or back pain for a day can affect our mood. Imagine having that pain every day for six months. It’s actually quite reasonable to expect anxiety and depression with chronic pain.”

Since both pain and depression make each other difficult to treat, it’s critical to address both when evaluating treatment options.

Symptoms

If you have some of these symptoms, you may be suffering from depression in addition to chronic pain:

  • irritability or "dark" mood

  • lack of interest in daily activities

  • lack of appetite and energy

  • disruption in sleep patterns

  • feelings of despair

  • difficulty in concentrating

  • suicidal thoughts

Be honest with your doctor about the emotional and physical symptoms you’re experiencing. It doesn't mean that just because pain is invisible it isn't real or can't be treated.

Treatments that help with pain

There is hope. By treating your pain, the depression associated with it can improve. Your treatment plan should be customized to your needs. Most plans focus on both pain reduction and increasing ways to encourage daily function while living with pain.

It may take both medications and other treatments to feel better. The options include: acupuncture, biofeedback, cognitive behavioral therapy, distraction, guided imagery, massage therapy, electrical nerve stimulation, physical therapy, mind-body stress reduction, relaxation training, education, self-help groups, and hypnosis.

Hypnosis uses focused attention that helps patients reach a relaxed state that allows for positive suggestion.

Whatever works for you, taking part in activities is vital to your recovery. It helps you focus on what you can do, instead of what you can’t do. It helps you return –physically and mentally–to who you really are.

Consider today about talking to Jarvis Hypnotherapyto help you regain control over your body, mind, and wellbeing.

References:

www.nia.nih.gov/health/pain-you-can-get-help#acute

www.psycom.net/depression.central.chronic.pain.html

https://health.clevelandclinic.org/why-chronic-pain-brings-you-down-how-to-feel-better/

https://academic.oup.com/bja/article/87/1/144/304231#91212590


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