How Therapies Can Support You When Dealing With Chronic Pain
Updated: Mar 29, 2022
Chronic pain is a subject that is very close to my heart after my recent leg injury. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’m currently recovering after this happened in November 2021. It usually takes 6-7 months for this type of injury to heal but I’ve been able to speed up the process significantly by using a combination of therapies that promote healing.
Because I have personal experience of exactly how it’s like to live with chronic pain, I also know how you’re feeling. I understand how exhausted you feel, even when you’ve only been able to take a few steps to get to the bathroom and that motivation has because you don’t have the tools to help you feel better. And I want to give you hope that you can recover!
Here’s what I’ve done to support my recovery and what you can do if you’re also dealing with chronic pain.
The Mind-Body Connection
The brain has a significant impact on pain levels. Pain actually starts in the mind. That’s not to say that pain is “in your head” - it’s simply the body’s response to feeling threatened. The brain sends out pain signals as a warning sign. The more dangerous the threat seems, the more intensely pain will be felt.
With chronic pain, these signals are sent after the threat has been reduced or has disappeared. This is why you may continue to feel pain after an injury has healed. The intensity of the pain can also be increased due to how the brain perceives pain.
High stress levels can also influence pain levels. This becomes a vicious cycle given that chronic pain is very stressful in itself!
But the mind is incredibly powerful and it can learn to stop sending out these pain signals and to dial down the intensity
Why Painkillers Aren’t The Best Solution
When we feel pain, we almost always want to reach for painkillers to help us feel better. While this may offer some short-term relief from the pain, it’s not doing you any favours.
The primitive part of the brain is forever seeking shortcuts. In the case of chronic pain, this can mean being drawn to instant pain relief or finding coping mechanisms. Painkillers act as one of these shortcuts and are an “easy” way to feel better. This is why taking painkillers for chronic pain can become addictive and why I didn’t want to use them to help me after my leg injury.
A natural chronic pain relief solution is the best option. It harnesses the body’s natural ability to heal, which is so powerful. It’s truly amazing how the body can do this with the right support. I wouldn’t have started to recover so quickly without this and I highly recommend it.
The Power of Positive Thinking
Positive thinking is one of the most important parts of natural healing. I have used the “3 Ps” every single day on my recovery journey:
Positive Thinking - Focus on what’s going right. This is a tricky one when you’re in pain but there will always be something positive. You just need to find it!
Positive Actions - Do something for yourself. Your movement may be more restricted but there are still many activities you can do.
Positive Interactions - Interact with people and maintain social connections. You may not feel like doing this when you’re struggling with pain but it’s so important.
Even my doctor was surprised at my positive attitude in the immediate aftermath of my injury but it’s all due to mindset. I am a firm believer that “where focus goes, energy flows”.
It’s not about telling yourself that “everything is amazing”. It’s much more about finding the positives in the situation.
When I returned to London, I was still unable to walk very far and needed a wheelchair to help me get around, both at the airport and further afield. Instead of feeling embarrassed, I chose to see it as a VIP experience. The airport staff who helped me were very surprised at my attitude, but I believe it’s made an enormous difference for my recovery.
If you find it difficult to engage in positive thinking, hypnotherapy can rewire your brain to act in a positive and solution-focused way.
A Combined Approach to Dealing With Chronic Pain
Hypnotherapy can also provide you with a boost of serotonin (the happy hormone), which is the fastest inhibitor of pain, it brings the pain signal down and closes the pain gates.
When you have chronic pain and aren’t moving as much as you normally would, you’re producing less serotonin. Hypnotherapy is increasing your serotonin levels and helps to change your old beliefs like “I will never get better”.
Hypnotherapy isn’t the only solution that can help you when you’re dealing with chronic pain.
I created a combined approach that also uses NLP and Reiki (energy healing) and have used it myself to great effect.
As well as injury, pain can sometimes develop from physical and emotional disturbances, which Reiki can address. When energy can move freely, pain can be reduced and self-healing can occur.
But even where there is an anatomical cause for pain, energy healing can work on the emotional side of things and this can still help to manage pain.
This combined approach is a natural and very effective way to find long term pain relief.
During the process, we activate the parasympathetic nervous system (The “chill out” brain) which controls the perception of pain.
If you would like to see how I can help you to heal chronic pain, please feel free to get in touch.
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