Chronic Pain Reduction and Yoga

Yoga is one of the most powerful practices for Pain relief ever discovered but it is not widely known to be so phenomenal in either main stream chronic pain treatment or in the population of suffers.  I take comfort in the fact that I see that shifting as we become more interested in the workings of the brain.   There is an increasing interest in the mind, body connection and Brain functioning.  For an example go onto  Google Scholar and read the research of Dr Kelly McGonigal and Dr Chris Streeter.    Dr McGonigal has written a book called” Yoga for Pain”  which is an excellent reference.

Pain is a cycle , a circle of fear,  tension , and  stress  with each element  influencing  and increasing each other.

Next time you are talking to someone or about sometime that is upsetting to you , take the time to notice the changes in your body.  I had a very drastic reaction to a phone call lately that put so much stress into my hip joints that my pain free body at the beginning of the phone call had changed to a pain filled body  which could hardly walk by the end of the call. This was a drastic illustration to me , on just how susceptible our well being is to what is going on in our minds.   Yoga has practical tools to lessen  pain,  by creating a sense of control and so lessening fear,  removing mind and body tension and reducing  stress. This combines to put a stop to the downward spiral of pain and suffering .    In  “Yoga for Pain”, Pain  is defined as the actual physical  or emotional hurt. Suffering on the other hand is how our mind reacts to the pain, the worry, the imagining, that triggers us to go into the stress response.    Western Doctors have invaluable tools to help us deal with pain but most do not know how to  help patients deal with suffering.  Yoga’s prime directive has always been to remove  all human suffering.   It has been employed to relieve and reduce suffering for thousands of years.  A gift that is becoming more and accessible in our society.    The body has natural pain suppression but it does not work well in people with chronic pain because of the interference of stress, anxiety and depression.  Yoga Asana ( poses)  and Breath  can stimulate the brain to release natural pain suppression chemicals and meditation can decrease the brains sensitivity to pain.   If you are ready to try something  very old ,  instead of something new,  contact a local Yoga Therapist and see what Yoga  can do for your condition.



Isla Viscount

Yoga Therapist and Hypnotist


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