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Using Visualization to Ease Chronic Pain November 5, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Health & Wellness, Magick & Mystery.

If you suffer from Chronic Pain, I recommend reading the following article by Loolwa Khazzoom:

Drug-Free Remedies for Chronic Pain:  Escape from Pain without Drugs

Using a compelling case study, Ms. Khazzoom, who blogs at Dancing with Pain, demonstrates how alternative medicine and visualization techniques got Cynthia Toussaint back on her feet again.

Before treatment:

“Bedridden and folded up in a fetal position, she was unable to brush her hair, shower, or use the bathroom unaided. She teetered on the verge of suicide.”

Treatment with Guided Imagery:

“When she first began working with a physical therapist, Toussaint was so sensitive that the slightest touch caused her intense pain. So the therapist, sitting at Toussaint’s bedside, used guided imagery, a deep-relaxation method scientifically proven to reduce pain levels.

In guided imagery, a therapist helps a patient imagine herself in a calming place. Many patients visualize going to the beach or the mountains. Toussaint conjured up a make-believe ballet class, where week after week the therapist followed Toussaint’s verbal cues to guide her through elaborate combinations that she “danced” in her head.”

After treatment:

“Her body quickly began unfolding. Within one month of starting the three-times-a-week guided-imagery sessions, she could sit up, walk around her condominium, and shower without help. Perhaps most significantly, she was able to receive hands-on physical therapy, which further reduced her pain.”

Cover of

Cover of Guided Imagery for Self-Healing

Why does guided imagery and creative visualization work?

According to Martin Rossman, M.D., author of Guided Imagery for Self-Healing (New World Library, 2000):

Repeated thoughts and emotions create nerve pathways in the brain.

Chronic pain impulses travel along well-worn pathways.

By using techniques such as guided imagery to build new nerve pathways, “the pain pathways can become less active.”

Hmm . . .

If creative visualization works to ease  chronic pain . . . think what it could do to improve your mood!

Related posts:  What’s The BEST That Could Happen * Creative Visualization


1. Cindy - November 5, 2010

I’m quite fascinated by this, everyone around here is buzzing about a new kind of couple-counselling called Imago Therapy. mmm…

nrhatch - November 5, 2010

Our minds are capable of fantastic imagery and visualization which can create new brain synapses and “defeat” self-defeating thoughts.

Using visualization effectively makes for an easier ride through the brumbles.

2. Booksphotographsandartwork - November 6, 2010

I really need this book. Can’t wait to get it. Having fibromyalgia is a real pain in a lot of ways. Everything I do is affected by it.

I have a lot of stress going to the dentist from past issues as well as the fibro so I tried to used visualization and breathing techniguies but it is very difficult for me. The nitrous though, oh my! Loved it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The valuim was good too. Still can’t open my jaw all the way though. But I can eat so thats good.

Thanks for sharing this information.

nrhatch - November 6, 2010

If you have chronic pain, these techniques are definitely worth exploring. Our minds are more powerful than most of us have been led to believe.

At the dentist, I imagine walking on the beach ~ the noise of the drill becomes the roar of the waves.

The dentist’s light becomes the sun.

But I had nitrous last time (for the first time) and quite enjoyed the experience.

3. Tilly Bud - May 12, 2011

I’d be willing to try this but the Hub has enough scepticism for half the country. I doubt very much he’d be up for it. However, it will be worth a read. I’ll see if I can find a copy.

Thanks Nancy.

nrhatch - May 12, 2011
4. Tilly Bud - May 12, 2011

Thanks Nancy. I’ll check them out.

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