Many people know that meditation can be helpful with pain, but what about self hypnosis? According to some sources, working with your unconscious, not necessarily as a way to stop pain, but rather as a way to change your relationship with it, might provide one path to help relieve yourself of the sometimes overwhelming discomfort.
Shannon Wilder, in this Arthritis Today article, discuss how self hypnosis can be used as a noninvasive, nonmedication relaxation technique to deal with symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. According to Wilder, although treatment can be effective, it’s important to have reasonable expectations.
Hypnosis isn’t a one-shot treatment. It can be part of regular psychotherapy sessions, or delivered in a clinical setting. The goal is to teach patients the technique so they can use it on their own when pain strikes.
“All hypnosis is self-hypnosis,” says Janet Wootton, RN, nurse clinician for the pain clinic at Duke Children’s Hospital and Health Center, in Durham, NC. Though formally trained in hypnosis for several years, Wootton says she’s practiced the relaxation techniques it centers on far longer than that – as has anyone who’s ever spoken quietly, calmly and rhythmically in an effort to soothe a hurting or frightened child.
Read more from Wilder on self hypnosis and its effectiveness in treating pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis here.