Use Mind-Body Techniques To Reduce Chronic Pain
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- Pain physicians may recommend utilizing mind-body techniques, medication and interventional pain therapies to reduce chronic pain symptoms.
- Mind-body techniques use behavioral, social or spiritual methods to preserve or aid overall health and wellness.
- Dr. Arun Kandra and Dr. Szollas at Premier Spine and Pain Management educate patients on mind-body techniques that may reduce chronic pain.
Pain signals travel through nerves in the body toward pain centers located deep within the brain to be processed and later experienced. How the rest of your brain responds to this pain registration affects how it is perceived, which is why this manifestation is often called “pain perception.” Other factors that may influence pain perception include genetic makeup, personality and past experiences. Fortunately there is scientific evidence to support the idea that mind-body techniques may reduce chronic pain among other symptoms and conditions.
According to some of these reports, mind-body techniques can be used to mitigate anxiety disorders, chronic pain, depression, headaches, insomnia, high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. Mind-body techniques have also been used to aid childbirth, help those coping with a serious disease like cancer, or prepare individuals for surgery.
Below are a few mind-body techniques that may help reduce chronic pain symptoms:
Mediation may be a great way for chronic pain sufferers to relax and cope with the emotional distress that often accompanies the condition. This unique practice can be done in a number of ways, including sitting and resting quietly with the eyes closed, standing or sitting comfortably while reciting mantras (positive phrases) internally or out loud, or attempting to clear the mind by focusing on an inner or outer experience.
Relaxation techniques may vary depending on the patient’s individual abilities and needs. A relaxation technique may include lying down, closing the eyes and relaxing all muscles for 10, 20 or 30 minutes, or continuously tensing and relaxing muscles to help them stay loose and limber. Deep breathing may be another great relaxation technique for those with significant stressors or pain.
Guided imagery may be self-guided, or facilitated by a physician or support group. This technique encourages individuals to think of positive images to promote relaxation, reduce pain and boost overall wellness. An example of guided imagery may include a physician telling a patient with a chronic illness to imagine a swarm of white blood cells fighting damaged cells. Although this technique has yet to be thoroughly tested, many people have claimed success with their treatment(s) through guided imagery.
Positive thinking is perhaps the easiest technique to utilize and perform. Thinking positive thoughts over and over could increase feelings of joy and happiness, which are needed to combat pain. Taking a moment to think about the ones you love, favorite hobbies or a funny joke could help reduce chronic pain.
Premier Spine and Pain Management’s pain management doctors are double board certified in Anesthesiology and Pain Management and are dedicated to the treatment of chronic pain symptoms for patients in Easton, Pennsylvania, Phillipsburg, New Jersey, Clifton, New Jersey and the surrounding areas. For more information or to make an appointment, call 610-438-5071, 908-454-5338, or 973-779-7246.
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.
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