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Hypnotherapy can be very effective in removing the debilitating pain of headaches. There are many techniques hypnotherapists use to control and eliminate the pain of headaches. You can learn to use these methods for yourself, every time a headache strikes. These methods can help reduce dependence on painkillers. They will go to work more quickly, with no side effects, and none of the dangers of stomach upset, heart attack, or stroke often associated with pain killers.
Before learning to use these techniques, you must see your doctor to discover if there is any underlying condition for which the headache may be a symptom. A very common story is told in hypnosis workshops. A famous hypnotist goes to a physician, describing bad headaches. After a series of tests, the doctor informs him that there is a large inoperable tumor growing in his brain. He also says: "I am puzzled that you waited so long to come in. You should have been in excruciating pain for many months. I don't understand how you could have waited this long to see me." The hypnotist's response? He was adept at using hypnosis to control his pain. But he paid the ultimate price for his knowledge. Had he seen the doctor a year earlier, at the first signs of pain, he might have survived. This story may be apocryphal, but the frequency with which it appears in the hypnosis literature proves two things.
First, headaches, along with other chronic pains, can be easily controlled with hypnosis; second, all hypnotherapists should use caution in working with pain control, because of the possibilities so gruesomely illustrated in the previous story.
This is why I insist that my clients have a doctor's assessment whenever they work with me on any medical problem. And there is another reason for my requirement: If the doctor diagnoses an underlying medical condition, we can use hypnosis therapy to assist in the medical treatment of the condition. Had the man in my story been my client with a doctor's diagnosis in hand, we could have addressed the underlying emotional and mental cause of his tumor and taught him to shrink it-through visualization with the methods of somatic healing as an adjunct to medical treatment. We could even have used hypnotic imagery to help his body make more effective use of the chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery that his doctor recommended while minimizing the side effects of those treatments.
Many headaches, especially migraines, are caused by a constriction or expansion of blood vessels in the head. Since the effectiveness of hypnosis in controlling bleeding in surgery is well documented, it should come as no surprise that hypnosis can normalize blood flow to reduce headaches.
What many hypnotists don't know is that no complicated or deep induction is required to achieve these results. In my office, I simply train my client in an alert trance to use hypnotic movement combined with draining out the color of the headache through several exit points chosen by the client's subconscious mind. This achieves normalization of blood flow to the head. These exit points often open up at the temple for migraines or behind the head where muscular strain often causes tension headaches. While neither I nor the doctor knows where these exit points are, the subconscious mind does know, and will show these points to the hypnotized client. With the client gently touching or rubbing these exit points, they can be opened to drain out the unique color of the headache.
While the hypnotic movements are different for each client, often they are as simple as the head twisting around slowly or falling slowly forward into the client's hands. The color we wind up draining out is often a dull red. Then the client visualizes replacing it with a color of healing given us by the subconscious mind. Blue, white, gold, or violet are common. The client is often astonished at how quickly their headache disappears using these simple methods. I guess that proves it's not faith healing!
It may take a couple of sessions to learn these skills--but once learned, the client can easily perform these simple processes every time a headache strikes, without the need for any trance induction. These techniques work faster than pain pills. Even clients who still require medication can use these methods to reduce medication levels.
For long term healing of chronic headaches another step may be needed. We can use hypnosis to explore the underlying emotional or mental causes of the headache in the client's subconscious mind. (This is distinct from the physical cause of the headache which only a doctor can help determine.) We can use simple instructions like entering the headache as if it were a room to see people or memories which are locked up inside the headache. This requires the assistance of a specially trained hypnotherapist, since most hypnotists, even licensed physicians, do not have adequate training to work at these deep levels. For more detailed information on addressing these underlying causes, see my article, "The Alchemy of Healing" (on our website at www.alchemyinstitute.com/explore.htm).
Another factor with chronic headaches is that many can be the result of poor diet, eating foods to which one is allergic, or chemical and environmental sensitivities. They can even be the result of lifestyle or relationship choices. In addition to consulting an allergist and nutritionist, your inner healer can advise you on precisely what relationship, diet, or lifestyle changes might help you eliminate the headache symptoms from your life. (You can learn more about the Inner Healer Journey from the Alchemy Institute website at www.alchemyinstitute.com).
The good news is that you don't have to live with chronic headaches any more. You can start your healing journey today!
David Quigley is the creator of Alchemical Hypnotherapy and founder of The Alchemy Institute, a California State-approved vocational school located in Santa Rosa. As well as being an experienced Hypnotherapist, David has extensive training in Gestalt, primal therapy, group process, Jungian psychology and NLP. David is now accepting a small number of telephone clients. For more information call 707-539-4989 or visit www.alchemyinstitute.com.
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