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How Does Hypnosis Take Away Pain?


By Columnist Ernest McLeod – Certified Hypnotherapist:


Photo credit: A. Teller 2013- Return of the Hypnotist

There are plenty of reported cases where a patient has undergone surgery under hypnosis in place of anaesthetics, including giving birth, major surgery and even brain surgery. This practice actually dates back to the early 1800s when physician Recamier operated on patients under what was termed a mesmeric coma.

Nowadays there have been numerous studies performed within the medical and science communities to provide evidence that hypnosis reduces and even eliminates pain. Reasons for doing this can vary from a cost factor through to a safety factor for some patients who may have adverse effects to anaesthetics.

A 2002 cost analysis by radiologists Elvira Lang, MD and Max Rosen, MD, compared intravenous sedation with hypnotic sedation during radiology treatment and found that the cost of using hypnosis was two-times less in cost than the standard sedation procedure. A review of controlled clinical studies in 2003 by Dr Patterson and fellow psychologist Mark Jensen, PhD, concluded that hypnosis used for the treatment of acute pain is superior to standard recognised treatment.

So How Does Hypnosis Remove the Pain?

To begin with, we need to understand that all pain is a response in the mind to receiving a sensory signal, which is sensed externally or internally. Pain is not real. It is imagined. A made up reply, to the body sensing something. For example, we feel hitting our toe on a sharp object or we see ourselves cutting our finger, or we feel pain in our tummy because we ate something bad. But have you ever seen something painful happen to someone else and you feel that same pain in your body for a moment? Or you think about doing something, and you feel pain related to that? It is important to note that pain has a purpose, to warn us that something is out of the norm with our body.

The power of hypnosis lies in focusing the mind and being able to shift or reframe responses. Often this technique will be applied in steps, such as reframing a burning sensation into a warm and then comfortable, cool sensation. For example, Dr Milton Erickson helped a woman who was suffering from terrible cancer-related pain to reframe this pain into a mild itch. It’s quite common that chronic pain sufferers will be taught a self-hypnosis method to assist with reducing and even eliminating their pain.

About Our Hypnotherapy News and Review Columnist Ernest McLeod
Ernest McLeod Headshot 1Ernest McLeod is the owner of The Hypno Coach, established in 2012, and has been practicing Hypnotherapy in Adelaide since 2011. Ernest is a certified hypnotherapist and studies include Hypnotherapy through ASA and ICHP Australia as well as Psychotherapy. He also holds Certified Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming and Certified Practitioner of Time Line Therapy with the American Board of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

Ernest’s wealth of life experience includes growing up in Austria, close to Vienna. Moving to Adelaide in 1991 with his parents. His mum being South Australian. With his father working for the United Nations in Vienna, Ernest was privileged to grow-up exposed to many cultures. After graduating from college Ernest began a career as Software Developer which spanned nearly 20-years. Having also established himself as a internationally awarded fashion photographer, Ernest moved into hypnotherapy. Something that had fascinated Ernest since early childhood.

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Disclaimer: The information published in this column are based on the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

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