Coping with chronic illness
Illnesses have been widely thought of as a purely physiological and the modern treatments for curing them are medication and surgery. Unfortunately an area ‘essential’ for fighting and recovering from illness comes very low down the list. That area is the mind! Many people are now using hypnotherapy to aid in the recovery of auto immune diseases including chronic fatigue, ME, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia and cancer.
Our body not only responds to the food we ingest and the air we breath. It responds to the thoughts generated from our environment. If our minds are filled with bad thoughts our body moves into defensive mode, releasing potentially harmful hormones like cortisol and histamine and reducing the strength of our immune system. Reverse that thought process and the body will move to growth mode where it can heal and grow.
There is a mind/body connection and many people are now using medical hypnotherapy as weapon against serious illness. The subconscious mind can be accessed by a hypnosis and the anxiety that maintains illness can be addressed to enhance healing. This is because our subconscious mind has an influence on our autonomic nervous system through our limbic hypothalamic system.
Some people may have a genetic pre-disposition to illness but other factors including trauma, a stressful lifestyle, the environment and a weakened immune system greatly increase our chances of developing chronic illness.
But what about proof of the minds involvement in developing illness? Back in mid eighties physician Vincent J Felitti noticed a link between childhood trauma and obesity. He partnered up with like minded MD called Robert Anda and they began to research this link. They devised a series of 10 questions relating to childhood trauma and surveyed 17,000 people. They called it the Adverse Childhood Experience questionnaire or ACE for short. Every yes answer to a question was worth 1 mark. They compared the answers of the questionnaires with the medical records of the participants and the results left them dumbstruck!
64% of the group answered yes to 1 or more question. Those that scored 4 or more were twice as likely to develop cancer and 460% more likely to suffer from depression. If they scored 7 or more they had a 360% greater chance of developing heart disease.
Early chronic stress leads to the deregulation of our stress hormones which increases inflammation in the body. This explains the link between stress and auto immune diseases like chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. For every yes answer the chances of developing an auto immune disease rose by 20%.
Our DNA is protected by caps called telomeres that help keep which keep it healthy. The length of these telomeres is a good indicator of health. Childhood trauma damages the telomeres and shortens them increasing the likely hood of illness. So trauma affects the body at a cellular level.
Childhood trauma and prolonged anxiety can predispose us to illness. If you combine this with an unhealthy lifestyle, bad diet, stress and you have created a ticking time bomb. If a pre cancerous cell slips past your immune system you may have a problem!
If you have any questions about hypnotherapy and chronic illness please fill in the boxes below or call me on 07899886882.