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When we experience pain we do so for a number of reasons. The most important of these is that it gives us a warning of harm, that something is wrong. It tells us we need to do something. There will also be physiological signs such as reddening of the skin around the injury and sensitivity. This is known as the ‘axon flare’ and the response our body makes begins the process for our bodies to heal.


Experience tells us that our perception of pain can be far less if we don’t realise we are actually injured. Have you ever experienced a child playing who hasn’t realised they cut or injured themselves until you make them aware of it and then they will cry as the sight of it reminds them to respond accordingly. Similarly our levels of pain can be far worse when we feel anxious, our minds can anticipate and imagine pain before we even experience it setting ourselves up for example a really bad trip to the dentist.


Disassociation from pain is possible. I was born with osteogenesis imperfecta more commonly known as brittle bones. From the age of 18 months I began breaking my legs frequently as well as most other bones in my body. I learnt how to disassociate myself from the intense pain of say, a broken femur by focussing on something else. I would detach myself from the moment. At the hospital when they prepared to reset the leg I would focus on the clock knowing that in twenty minutes my leg would be in plaster and the pain would be far less. I would apply this ‘skill’ at the dentist too again focussing on the clock taking myself out of the room.

Hypnosis induces a deep state of complete relaxation reducing awareness and anxiety allowing a natural reduction of pain. With guided imagery and direct suggestion my client’s experience of pain can be reduced or eliminated. Where extreme pain cannot be eliminated due to debilitating illness I will teach my client self hypnosis using a pain scale so when they need to, they can reduce the pain from say a scale of ten down to a more comfortable three or other techniques like anasthesia and disassocation. Lastly, pain is a signal telling you that something needs attention. Pain should be taken seriously and never treated as just ‘all in the mind’. I will only ever use hypnosis to help alleviate pain after the problem has been fully addressed. It’s imperative that if you are in any kind of pain you get it checked out if you haven't already done so.

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