Pain can be reduced without drugs

The 4th December 2012 edition of the Daily Mirror carried an article by Dr Chris Steele, who has been the resident GP on ITV1’s “This Morning” programme for the past 24 years.  Dr Steele is 67and suffering from osteoarthritis in the knees.  Climbing stairs was agony – he was finding it difficult to bend down and pick things up, or play with his grandchildren.  Long term pain relief such as with anti-inflammatories or codeine was unattractive to him because of the side effects.

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Dr Steele had read about and researched a device called the Alpha Stim.  More research has been carried out on this product than on many drugs. Our nervous system uses minute electrical currents to communicate with cells throughout the body.  Using earclips and pads, the Alpha Stim stimulates this system to produce endorphins – naturally produced chemicals that reduce pain and make us feel good.  Alpha wave production is enhanced and that makes us feel relaxed.  Blood flow and oxygen is increased to the painful area – reducing inflammation.  Without side effects.

Dr Steele used the Alpha Stim.  The next day he was amazed to find that he was pain free.  After a day or two he needed to wear it again and found that the effect is cumulative so that the pain-free periods between usages can gradually be extended.  He has now used it with other people suffering from arthritis with similar beneficial results and he regularly promotes it on his programme.

Clinical hypnotherapy also affects the way that the brain experiences pain.  Many operations are carried out each year using hypnotherapy as the only anesthetic.   Not everyone can achieve this depth of trance, but most people can learn how to reduce levels of chronic discomfort through self-hypnosis to more acceptable levels.