A complete pain management plan to treat your chronic lower back pain will include several techniques, from medication to meditation. One technique to consider adding is hypnosis. Studies have found this to be an effective tool against back pain, so it could become another non-invasive way to reduce your pain. Here is how hypnosis is useful as part of your pain management program.
Dealing with the Psychological Components of Your Lower Back Pain
Hypnosis for pain management works by focusing on the psychology of pain. Your thoughts influence your experience of pain, so this technique attempts to alter the way you think about the pain. When you are able to change your thoughts, you reduce your experience of the pain. Initially, you'll work with a practitioner to change the thoughts, but you'll also learn self-hypnosis techniques that you can use at home.
The following five areas will be the focus of treating your lower back pain with hypnosis.
These are the "what if" thoughts that cycle through your mind over and over about your pain. They anticipate future pain and consequences and never let you relax. Some of the thoughts will include:
- "What if my pain keeps getting worse?"
- "What if my pain is cause by an incurable disease?"
- "What if my pain never leaves?"
With hypnosis, the "what if" thought cycle is broken, relieving anxiety and allowing you to relax.
These thoughts relate to your level of belief that your current treatment, or any treatment, will work to relieve your lower back pain. These thoughts might include:
- "I don't believe the medication will keep working for me."
- "I don't believe that my doctor can effectively treat my back pain."
The hypnosis practitioner will help you develop more positive thoughts about your treatments and the people who are trying to help you.
This helps you to think only on the pain that you have in the current moment. It helps you ignore thoughts about yesterday's pain and how the pain might be tomorrow. By focusing your awareness on the pain in this moment, you see it as a temporary event that can change and go away.
You'll be taught ways to relax while under hypnosis that you can use throughout the day. The pain causes you to tense up certain muscles, which causes you to feel tense all over. Being able to relax, in spite of the pain, will improve your sleeping patterns and the quality of sleep that you are getting.
This thought process causes you to see the pain as part of you that you can't let go of. The practitioner will teach you how to dissociate yourself from the pain so you begin to see it as an independent thing. When in this state if detachment from the pain, you'll be able to observe the pain and its qualities but not be affected by them.
When used in combination with your medication and other forms of pain management, like help from a location like Pain Treatment Center, hypnosis will help you have a normal day. It teaches you to think about your pain in different ways so it doesn't have as much control over your body.