Chronic Pain – how to sleep and relieve / manage your symptoms

CHRONIC PAIN – what you can do to relieve and manage your symptoms

I have been getting more inquiries lately from people with chronic pain and digestive issues. Can Clinical Hypnotherapy, NLP or Meditation help someone manage their symptoms and bring some relief?

The UK COMPLEMENTARITY AND NATURAL HEALTH CARE COUNCIL was set up by the government to cover alternative therapies. The use of Hypnotherapy for both pain and IBS is acknowledged. The CHNC states:

PAIN – Hypnotherapy may help people to cope with and manage the relief of perceived pain

IBS – Hypnotherapy has also been used with both adults and children to help manage the pain associated with irritable bowel. There is evidence to support its use in this condition for both adults and children and the National Institute for Health and Clinical Guidance (NICE) recommends the NHS should consider referring patients for hypnotherapy if their irritable bowel is persistent and has failed to respond to simple prescribed medicine

This article looks at pain and how using the power of your mind may help you.


Neuroscience has discovered that pain is not what it seems. Rather than being a single impulse from a particular part of the body, it is actually a collection of sensations in the brain, not in the body. Many amputees still feel pain in the limb that has been removed.

Dr. Michael Gross is a leading Consultant UK Neurologist, based in Harrow. In his article Pain is in the Brain he explains:

Chronic pain is usually referred to as intractable pain if it persists for six months or more. …….. People with chronic pain experience depression, sleep disturbance, fatigue and decreased mental and physical functioning. …….. The evidence available suggests that depression and chronic pain share common biological pathways namely the serotonergic and noradrenaline systems.

Recent studies also show, that chronic pain not only produces functional change, but it actually alters the structure of the brain.


Milton Erikson was a founder of modern hypnosis had used trance and the power of his mind almost everyday of his life to cope with the dreadful pains from his polio. When he woke in the morning he could not function until he had got his body under control. His story is astonishing. This is an extract from his biography on the Erikson Foundation website

Dr. Erickson was plagued with enormous physical handicaps for most of his life. At age 17, he contracted polio and was so severely paralyzed that doctors believed he would die……Despite almost constant, intense physical pain and the progressive loss of mobility which lead to confinement to a wheelchair in his later years, Dr. Erickson was prodigiously active…… During the 1950s and ’60s, Dr. Erickson published copiously, traveled and lectured extensively, both domestically and abroad…..

My experience of pain – In 2009 I was in so much pain from Fibromyalgia that I hired TENS unit. I had tried all sorts of physical techniques for fatigue and pain, but nothing helped long term. In despair, I started looking into how I could use the power of my mind. Since then, I have hardly been troubled by those pains that I was told were always going to be part of my life.

My husband does a lot of DIY and gets cuts and wounds that would have me at A&E. But he has learned to not devote his time to thinking about the pain of an injury and gets on with what he is doing. Pain to him is at most an irritation, not a torment.


Hypnosis in History – The use of hypnosis dates back to ancient India, Greece, and Egpyt. John Mongiovi, a Manhattan-based Hypnotist has some fascinating blogs history of hypnosis on his website.

Some of the earliest evidence of hypnosis for healing comes from the Egyptian Ebers Papyrus, dating to 1550 B.C. According to this ancient medical papyrus, priest-physicians repeated positive suggestions while administering their treatments and had patients fix their gaze on metal discs to enter trance, a hypnosis technique known today as eye “fixation.”

Relaxing – Most of us will have noticed that pain gets worse when we are stressed and eases when we can relax completely. We may have experienced a physical reaction as a result of being very stressed or upset – often a headache or digestive problem.

Hypnosis can involve the use of hypnosis to help someone deeply relax, let go of the pain and instruct the body to heal.

Mental techniques – Shlomo Vaknin’s excellent book Advanced Mental Techniques for Pain Control has techniques you can experiment with on your own or with a coach / therapist.

Resolving issues that might be at the root of the pain. This can be very effective, as it takes away the reason for the pain to exist. Core Transformation by Connirae Andreas can be very effective.

Imagine your most difficult problems actually having a positive aspect, something through which to learn, grow, and transform. Core Transformation gently guides you in discovering those positive intentions, leading to an experience of understanding, where awareness and change occur naturally.

Body Calm – I teach Sandy Newbigging’s Body Calm, as I found that it helped me to improve my health and let go any remaining pain. Learn how to rest and allow yourself to heal. Sandy’s book has directories that suggest emotional causes to explore. At the core is a simple, very effective meditation that you can use with your eyes open or closed.

It is particularly good for people who think they cannot meditate – as you don’t need to quieten your mind.

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