Chronic pain sufferers everywhere are becoming more aware of the tremendous benefits that health maintenance can provide. By adhering to a healthy lifestyle, some types of chronic pain can be mitigated. There are many paths to success, including eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly. While these practices are important, there is another vital piece of the puzzle that needs to be addressed.
This increasingly recognized therapy is commonly known as meditation. Practiced for millennia and widely studied in modern times, this sophisticated discipline has been shown to provide a wide range of benefits to adherents, including enhanced pain management. This article will introduce readers to the subject of managing chronic pain with basic meditation. It will also deliver a basic step-by-step startup guide to help pain sufferers reap the remarkable fruits of enhanced mental control.
Just What is Mindful Reflection?
Meditation is the general name for a number of mental or physical skills and practices that can alter mental states. By using the techniques that are described below, individuals can become more in tune with their inner material and spiritual states and can gain greater control over their bodily functions.
Here are some tried and tested yogic techniques that are known to promote relaxation, harmony, and pain relief. Set aside about 15 or 20 minutes for these pain relief techniques. While certain exercises can be performed just about anywhere, the following methods are best performed in a quiet and clean setting.
- Assume a relaxed position in a supportive seat, with the soles of the feet touching the ground.
- Passive awareness exercise. Allow your attention to be drawn to the details of your body, mind, and environment. Make observations without judgements.
- Deep breathing. Proper breathing can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, releasing many therapeutic substances along the way. Practitioners should breath in and out slowly and rhythmically, making sure to allow the abdomen to move freely.
- Use a mantra. This can be any word or phrase that is significant to you. Speech can be synchronized with breathing for greater effect.
- Thought acceptance. Take note of the thoughts that pass through your mind without trying to address them. Observe as each one slowly floats away.
- Body scan. Focus your attention on different areas of your body in sequence.
- Final stretch. Take a moment to loosen up the major muscle groups to promote further relaxation.
Benefits of Mindfulness for Pain Management
Basic meditation has helped many people manage their constant pain, improving the quality of their lives in the process. Some other benefits include:
- Pain relief without the need for drugs. While opiate pain relief products have their place, they also have many well-documented and potentially dangerous side-effects. According to many studies, including one conducted at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, meditation can provide rapid pain relief that can supplement or replace drug therapies.
- Effective. Another related study at the same institution tested mindfulness against placebos. The results showed that practitioners of mental awareness and acceptance enjoyed greater pain reduction on average than the placebo recipients.
- Can provide lasting relief. One of the main dangers of opioid drugs are their tendency to lose effectiveness over time. Mindful reflection suffers no such constraints, and can be key to managing chronic pain over the long term.
To learn more about how to manage and relieve chronic pain, contact the Pain Care Clinic of Idaho at 208-939-3750 or visit paincareclinicofidaho.com.