Pain and Hypnosis

We’ve all had that pain that lingers. Sometimes from an injury, new or old, and sometimes we don’t know what it’s from, but it just won’t let up or go away. Typically for the easing of pain doctors will prescribe pain medication. Which therein can lie some problems of its own. Some people can’t or won’t take pain killers due to choice, sensitivity, allergies, severe side effects or even addiction and the potential to become addicted. This is where hypnosis for pain management can come into play.

Pain lets us know something is wrong, and if we get rid of the pain all together we can potentially cause permanent damage to a recently injured body part. With hypnosis we can lessen the pain to make it manageable, but no so much that we forget there is something wrong. By having the person see or imagine seeing the pain where it hurts in the body and giving it a shape and a color we can begin to help the person manipulate it. We would ask the person what shape it is, the color, and then ask if the person can make it bigger or, ideally, smaller. We can then ask if the person can change the color and make it less intense. By making the pain smaller and a less intense color, it would ease the pain to a more tolerable level, but still leave enough as a reminder not to over do it.

For the relief of pain from a healed injury or arthritis, where the possibility of further injury or damage is minimal, we can use hypnosis to remove the pain fully. This can be done a couple of different ways. We can start with the same process used with the easing of pain from a recent injury, but rather than just lessening the pain we can try to remove it all together. We would have the person imagine removing the pain from the body and setting somewhere else out of their body, or having the person change the color to the color it is when it doesn’t hurt. The other way to accomplish alleviating the pain is to have the person make the area go numb, as if injected with Novocain. Having the person imagine the actual injection of Novocain, as long as they’re not squeamish about needles, may be necessary to complete the scenario of the area going numb, with the end result being no more pain.

Sometimes the pain isn’t from a physical injury, but a psychological reaction to an event where a person feels responsible for the less than desirable outcome, and uses the pain as a form of self punishment with out even knowing it. In this case a hypnotherapist would start by asking about when the pain started, and the circumstances around it. Sometimes just identifying the reason for the guilt and re-examining it is enough to relieve the pain. When that isn’t enough the hypnotherapist may have the person reframe the memory, which would alleviate the pain and when looked back upon wouldn’t cause the same distress. Taking the memory and seeing it as a snapshot photo, and manipulating it from color to black and white, or vice versa, and distorting the subjects in the photo to a less stressful scene will make the memory easier to deal with and therefore relieving the pain of the perceived guilt.

Hypnosis is a valuable tool in the management of pain. This alternative to pain medication is becoming more and more accepted, implemented and recommended for those who can not or will not take pain pills. If you’re one of these people, Portland Hypnosis can help you.


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