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This is Our Time – Hypnosis for Pain Management

Sally* worked at the physician office next door to my practice in Connecticut.  She had surgery in the past, even sedation. And every experience was awful. Sally would get nauseous, she vomited and just could not take any pain medication. She had a surgery coming up. And by anesthesia standards, it was high risk for nausea vomiting, and a fairly painful surgery. She was planned to be admitted for 23* just for pain management.  This was a needed surgery, but not one that Sally looked forward to.

2 weeks before her surgery, she stopped by my office and asked for my guidance. I gave Sally a relaxation CD I had made, and told her I would arrange for her to have intraoperative suggestions played via headphones in the operating room. 2 days before her surgery, she stopped by my office and exclaimed, “Oh my gosh! I don’t know why I did not listen to that CD the last 2 weeks! I have not been sleeping and finally listened last night and I slept like a baby.” I told her to continue listening. During her surgery she had the intraoperative suggestions.

The result? She only needed 1 dose of pain medication. No nausea. No vomiting. Period. She wrote a glowing 1 page letter to the CEO of the hospital because it was the first time she had EVER had a positive surgical experience. Imagine being able to help hundreds of people this way EVERY YEAR!!

This is not an unreasonable goal. Right now we have an opportunity like never before. The prescribing practices for pain medications is restricted. Sometimes to the extreme. Addiction is a problem. But real people, without addictions, suffer from pain and are caught in the middle. I am not speaking of at home prescriptions only, but some hospitals are taking it to the extreme as well. Professional hypnotists are a part of the solution to this problem.

Let me share with you a story I read in a healthcare Facebook group I am a part of. The original post was quite lengthy, but I will abbreviate it here:

“I am a physician, and my grandmother was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer… I went out to California to be with her when she had surgery. The surgery was for palliative (decreased pain and suffering) reasons only. After the surgery she was transferred to hospice. 48 hours after her surgery, all narcotics were taken away. Even though she just had surgery AND was on hospice. I watched in horror as my grandmother spent her last days in pain.”

Imagine if this physician had known about hypnosis. Imagine the difference in this woman’s transition at the end of life had the hospice staff been aware of hypnosis. This physician and her family could have had a completely different experience. The patient could possibly have passed peacefully.

You know the mind is powerful. Like me, you have witnessed it first-hand. You have a skill that can help people change their lives. We have a skill that benefits others, and we need to let the world know.

Pain is a unique niche for hypnotists. Some basic facts should be understood. Pain is a very personal experience. It is subjective. Thoughts and beliefs play a major part in perception. This makes hypnosis about more than just hypnotic analgesia. It is important to address these beliefs AND issues like sleep, energy and mood.

When working 1:1 with clients I use a thorough pain assessment to get a mother lode of information. This helps identify the beliefs that need to be addressed and provides information to help individualize hypnotic patter for the client. The assessment is also a part of confidently creating a hypnotic session plan.

Working with groups can be effective as well. Schedule pre-surgery workshops and allow the group to use the pain assessment to gain insight into areas they can control to have a better experience. Train them in self-hypnosis, the relaxing breath and make sure they understand the power of self-talk. Introduce yourself to local surgeons to get referrals right into this group. People who used some form of pre-surgery relaxation or suggestion, or suggestion during surgery did better than 89% of the control group in a study—taking less pain meds and having less nausea. That’s impressive. I would take those odds!

Pain management hypnosis is rewarding. Imagine becoming the local physicians’ ‘go to’ person for their patients. If pain management hypnosis interests you, join me for a free Masterclass “4 Pillars of Effective Pain Management”. It is going to be 45 minutes packed full of information. I hope to see you there. Click here to sign up.

Pressure Cookers and Hynosis

I blew up a pressure cooker. Yep. You read that right. The darn thing just blew. And. It. Was. An. Epic. MESS.

Why would I blow up a pressure cooker? Well, it sure as heck wasn’t my intent. You see, pressure cookers are a staple cooking pot in the southern US. I was 13, and it was my job to get dinner going before everyone got home. My mom was in the hospital and my brother Barry and I were sitting at the kitchen island while the pressure cooker was working away on the stove.

What does blowing up pressure cookers have to do with hypnosis?

It had butter beans, BUTTER, BACON and water in it. We were distracted by homework (yeah, right) when the cooker started to make a funny noise. All of a sudden I knew something was NOT good. My brother and I dove behind the wall when the thing blew. Well, the lid didn’t blow off, but the pressure relief valve blew out and there was a hot, steaming geyser of buttery, bacon fatted water spraying all over the ceiling. I grabbed a towel and threw it on top. Quickly I called my grandmother for help. She just laughed and said, “you forgot to turn the heat down, didn’t you?”

Well, everything that has happened in your past doesn’t simply go away. The memories and the EMOTIONS attached to those memories are stored in your subconscious mind.  Sometimes those are emotions that we were not allowed to express. Most of us heard as children that we were to be ‘seen and not heard’, ‘boys don’t cry’, and ‘it’s not ladylike to be angry’.  So what did we do? We stuffed those feelings down. They never got expressed.

Do you know someone ready to ‘blow’?

Fast forward to sometime in the future, and there you are working away. The boss comes in and gives you some feedback on a project. You’re feeling unappreciated, undervalued. And this is not the first time. So you stuff it, because you love the work you do and really need that pay check. More feelings stuffed down, tucked away in that subconscious mind.

Then you get the weekend off. It’s a Saturday, and you decide to take the kids out for some fun. Maybe the park or for ice cream. The kids are having fun and get loud. Traffic is heavy. You’re getting irritated and really don’t know why. You can feel yourself beginning to boil. Determined to have a great day with the kids you tell yourself to knock it off. Now you’re getting frustrated with yourself. Arriving at your destination, silently frustrated, you admonish yourself for feeling this way. Time with the kids is precious. Next thing you know one kid has teased, pushed or hurt the other ones feelings in some way and that’s it. YOU EXPLODE. Red faced, nasty tone, raising your voice to the kids for just ruining a perfect day. Why did she have to be such a brat to her brother? She is so selfish, and petty.

Hypnosis can help you release the anger.

This is what happens when we can’t address things as they happen, OR find a satisfactory response to defuse the feelings. They build up over time and eventually they ARE going to express themselves. In a moment of regret, all the pain of the past comes pouring out onto that kid. It was an overreaction. But the damage is done. And if something is not done to release all of the emotion from the past in a meaningful and positive way, it will happen again.

These feelings can be neutralized in a positive and meaningful way creating change in your life. And it may not be simply peace of mind you gain. Dr. John Sarno, MD relates many inflammatory and somatic pain conditions to “repressed rage”. When you have suppressed anger all of your life, it WILL find a way out. With 5-PATH® hypnosis and 7th Path© Self Hypnosis you can turn down the heat on the pressure cooker in your mind and decompress. What are you waiting for? Call today and book your sessions 769-241-0888.