Chronic pain and depression often go hand in hand.When I was suffering with chronic pain, it seemed like it was the only thing that I could think about and this in itself led to depression and even more pain. You may have experienced the same thing. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. All it takes to change this non-productive and self-destructive situation is a little education, a comfortable cushion and some focused attention.
It’s important to first understand how the mind works. The workings of the mind can be likened to the grooves on a phonograph record. Each time that you think a certain thought, that thought makes a ‘groove’ in your mind. The more times you repeat that thought, the deeper the groove becomes.
When you live with chronic pain, your attention can become focused on your pain and everything in your life that relates to your pain (which is just about everything in your life). How often do you think about how much your back (fill in your own location of pain) hurts? I have found that I could go into quite a bit of detail carrying on conversations with myself about all my suffering.
After a while, I noticed that these thoughts started taking on a life of their own. No need to keep thinking about it, your mind will do it for you (kind of like a song that you can’t get out of your head).
I found (the hard way) that continually thinking about pain, only makes the pain worse, such as anything that we continuously focus on becomes sharper or clearer. Plus, the more we think about our suffering, the more depressed we become about the state we are in. Quite a mess, really. So, I decided to repair my broken record, so to speak. You can do it, too. It’s actually quite enjoyable.
Meditation Has A Positive Effect On Chronic Pain
Since our mind always carries on a dialogue anyway, why not switch it on a more positive track and convince it to play a better song? One of the ways that I do this is through meditation, which re-focuses the attention to a positive, constructive thought or series of words.
If you are a neophyte to the art of meditation, you may ask; how is this done? Simply said; first you must find a quiet place where you will not be disturbed. Sit in a comfortable position. You may have seen pictures of ‘turbaned’ men sitting in the crossed-legged position, but the turban is not mandatory (chuckle) and the crossed-legs may be awkward for a chronic pain sufferer. Neither is necessary in order to achieve results. Instead, try using a cushioned chair with a high back so that you can sit comfortably with your spine straight and your head resting upright against the back of the chair.
Next, close your eyes and focus your attention. The most important thing to remember is that you focus your attention on something positive, as it does no good to sit in a comfortable chair and then deliberate on your misery. Your positive thought can be something as simple as a pleasant scene in nature or an enjoyable memory.
If you would like to get more structured in your practice, such as repeating a specific mantra (a syllable or words containing mystical potential), there are many methods of meditation to choose from. Your neighborhood health-food market or book store probably carries numerous magazines and books on the subject. The important thing is to pick a method of meditation that resonates with you.
Meditation effects chronic pain is a positive way.
With practice, your attention will become stronger and more focused on your positive thought or mantra. In time, not only will you find that you can take your attention off your pain, (thereby reducing its negative effects on the quality of your life), you may also find that you have acquired some other skills such as more patience, perseverance, strength, composure, clearer thinking and a happier outlook on life. Chronic pain and depression often go hand in hand. By spending a little time every day practicing meditation, you can break that link and send depression packing.
And there’s a good video on YouTube titled “Chronic Pain Management Guided Meditation“. At about 9 minutes long, all you have to do is sit down and let it guide you through a meditation.
While I recommend meditation as a technique for releasing the stress of living with chronic pain, what would be even better would be ending your chronic pain once and for all. Professor /Dr. Rothbart has discovered two abnormal foot structures which cause chronic muscle and joint pain in millions of people. He’s also developed the only known therapy that addresses these foot structures and end chronic pain.
As you learn more about this innovative therapy, you may find that addressing and effectively treating your foot structure may be the missing link to ending your long time battle with unrelenting muscle and joint pain.
To find out if you may have an inherited, abnormal foot structure,click here to take the Rothbarts Foot Questionnaire.
If you have questions about what’s involved in being treated with Rothbart Proprioceptive Therapy, see our FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) Page.
To find out how former chronic pain sufferers eliminated their pain, read Patient Testimonials on Professor/Dr. Rothbart’s patient website.
Assistant to Professor/Dr. Rothbart