Chronic pain is more complicated than short-term pain. There may not be any obvious cause, or it could be as a result of a long-term or serious illness. Before you seek any other alternative type of therapy, you should always visit your doctor first, as they will be able to investigate it further.
How hypnotherapy can help
Hypnotherapy is often recommended to help manage long-term pain because it focuses on the mind-body link.
Anxiety and stress are very common when experiencing such pain, these side effects can even make it feel worse. So trying to reduce such anxiety and stress is something that many who experience chronic pain try to do, and this is why many opt for hypnotherapy.
Hypnosis can help you relax, reduce stress and address any negative thought patterns you are experiencing, which can make a difference in your perception of pain. To do this, your hypnotherapist will make suggestions to encourage pain relief.
Hypnotherapy doesn’t try to convince your mind that the pain doesn’t exist, it aims to manage any anxiety and fear that you may have that’s associated with your pain. It also helps to relax the nervous system which can help your mind be less reactive to pain.
Another way hypnotherapy can help is to refocus your mind on something more calming. For example, your hypnotist may ask you to think about somewhere relaxing, like a beach. Then by using visualisation techniques, you may be asked to describe the scene in more detail. Thinking about what the sand feels like under your feet, to the sound and temperature of the sea.
The number of sessions you will need will vary, but typically for long-term pain, four to 10 sessions is advised. Some hypnotherapists will supply you with resources to practice self-hypnosis at home.