Hypnosis for pain control – an account from Jan, with thanks to Gina, pictured with the needle in her arm!
“One of the most exciting parts of the course is around the third or fourth weekend when we stick needles in each other. Really, I’m not kidding. First, anyone with a needle phobia is given hypnotherapy in front of the class, because Greg doesn’t want anyone suffering with fear or anxiety. It’s a great demonstration of Greg’s deftness and skill, as well as an eye-opener about how rapidly these techniques work. So we’ve seen phobias removed in real time.
No-one is obliged to work with the needles, and it’s not something you would generally do with a client! Most of the students really want to, though, when we’ve seen it demonstrated. Because it is just astonishing. And it’s proof of the power of the mind.
It isn’t the sharp end of the needle. It’s the blunt end. Ouch! You really have to give it some wellie to break the skin. But with the hypnotic anaesthesia, there is no pain. You feel a tiny bit of pressure, but no pain.
We can really begin to get excited now about the magnificent power of the mind. The same method is used for dentistry and even internal operations, either to reduce the need for anaesthetic, or remove it altogether. Or to reduce blood flow to the area being worked on. Women have given birth with only hypnosis to control their pain. Hypnosis has been used on the battlefield for pain control when nothing else was available. Hypnosis is being used very successfully now to help with all kinds of pain relief and management. See the end of this post for a BBC clip about hypnosis for pain control.
After what I’ve witnessed here, I would turn first to hypnosis for pain control. I’ve seen Greg leading several different students through simple procedures that have reduced chronic and quite severe pain down to manageable levels, or they’ve managed to rid themselves of the pain completely. Amazing, and very moving, to witness. These are powerful, and empowering, techniques.
It’s what you might call ‘a convincer’. And it’s an important part of the course, because one of the qualities you need to be a successful hypnotherapist is to be 100% convinced of the effectiveness of the processes you’re using – ie, the tools in your toolbox.
What is unfortunate, is that there is quite a lot of misinformation out there about hypnosis and hypnotherapy. Purely suggestion-based hypnosis, which is where the therapist makes a lot of positive statements to the client, is helpful up to a point, and often does make a difference, but it’s not dynamic hypnotherapy. It’s passive. In dynamic hypnotherapy, the therapist is a guide, and the client leads, using their own very powerful intuition and imagination. This equips the client to use these pain-reducing tools whenever they need to, even in new and different circumstances.”
Jan Haley Brightwood graduated last year with Atkinson-Ball and now helps with the Administration of the College, as well as running her own hypnotherapy practice in Darley Dale, Derbyshire.
BBC’s One Show presenter Michael Mosley investigates hypnosis for pain relief with Stewart Derbyshire of Birmingham University.
Regarding the comment from Stewart Derbyshire at the end … we know the hypnotist does not ‘take control’ of anyone’s mind, but that the suggestions given enable the client to take control of their own mental processes.