I was recently asked by the mother of a child of eleven to attend her daughter in hospital the morning of a procedure where she was going to have a catheter put into her stomach. This procedure required the catheter to be put up her nose and then, after swallowing, down her esophagus and into her stomach. No Valium or calming drugs were permitted.
This is not an unusual procedure, but the child was naturally very anxious and fearful of new procedures she hadn’t encountered before.
I put her into a deep state of hypnosis, called the nurse in, and the catheter was in place in five seconds. When she came out of the hypnotic state it was all over and the child was able to accept and accommodate this inconvenience in a tolerable way for the required twelve hours. The nurse who carried out the procedure was delighted and surprised how quick and easy it was… and not a sound from the child!
Hypnosis before and after surgery can be very helpful. This is something I often do for clients who seek it. Surgery is normally a traumatic experience for the body and mind, in spite of anesthesia. Many surgeons and surgical staff are unaware that your unconscious mind is open and alert all through the operation, and absorbing what is going on and being said. Inappropriate remarks made about you whilst on the operating table stick in your unconscious mind. A friend of mine had extensive facial surgery following a bad car accident where his face was literally smashed by the steering wheel. I asked the nurse to play Sibelius throughout the operation and gave her the disk. I also told her I would check by using hypnosis later on exactly what happened throughout the operation. The Sibelius was indeed played, all talk was kept to the minimum, the operation was successful and the patient recovered quickly.
Hypnosis may be effective for controlling pain and discomfort following surgery and in particular assisting the body to heal well and rapidly. I am a firm believer that we all possess the power to heal ourselves and hypnosis is, in my opinion, one of the most effective methods to use. Every cell in our body has a mind of its own and you can give those cells positive instructions to change their composition or purpose and bring about the healing process. For many years now I have use a process devised by a well know English hypnotherapist called John Howard where I ask the subject to go inside their bodies to heal a particular part or organ. I used this process recently on a friend whose liver nearly failed due to a virus infection. He healed his liver and his kidneys, which had been working overtime as a result. He told me that while in the hypnotic state he thanked his kidneys for working so hard to bring his body back to normality, and he wished to award each one a special trophy appropriately engraved!
The pain threshold varies from individual to individual. Some people anticipate pain in their minds so that the moment they are touched they translate this into pain. Perhaps the best example is the dentist’s hypodermic needle approaching the gums of a patient. A combination of fear, anxiety and anticipation welling up in the mind of a patient can result in his feeling great pain the moment the needle penetrates the gum. Whereas in someone else who is relaxed and not bothered, a mere pin prick is felt. Major surgery can be performed under hypnosis without any anesthesia but this requires the patient to have had some training. In the case of chronic pain, I do not necessarily think pain can be entirely eliminated, but it’s severity can be cut by up to 80 per cent. It really is “all in the mind,” and hypnosis does assist by cutting down and in some cases eliminating pain altogether. We are all so used to seeking a pill for instant relief that we forget that we too can use this powerful tool of the mind instead.