hypnosis pain relief

Hypnosis Pain Relief

About Hypnosis and Pain

Hypnosis pain relief is powerful and widely used. People forget that hypnosis was in fact the first effective treatment for pain. Hypnosis was originally developed to allow surgeons to do lengthy operations before modern anesthetics were available. It is still used by some hospitals and dentists today.

Pain has many causes. It can be the result of psychological issues or it can come from actual organic damage. Exactly what links the mind and the body is not well understood. At a neurological level, every thought releases neuropeptides and these are designed to trigger some sort of action. Some actions are gross motor effects like the fight or flight response, some are subtle and undetectable, but they all have some sort of effect on the muscles and tissues of the body.

Headaches and migraines are often associated with stress, but exactly how the one affects the other is not clear (Landa et al, 2012). Ongoing anxiety is associated with diarrhea and ultimately IBS and feelings of guilt have been associated with rheumatoid arthritis, but it cannot be positively asserted that one causes the other. It is believed that this is the reason why some people get sore necks or bad backs from stress. Their emotions cause muscular contractions and these become chronic pain.

Hypnosis Pain Control Methods

Anaesthesia is the absence of feeling, analgesia is the absence of pain. Analgesia is a subset of anaesthesia. Hypnotic pain relief aims for some analgesia, not total loss of feeling.  Pain serves a useful purpose in healing. It reminds the body not to do any further damage by moving.

“Total anaesthesia, the equivalent of a negative hallucination or the perception of the complete absence of pain, can be achieved only with highly hypnotisable clients” (Gafner & Benson, 2003 p192). Attempting total anaesthesia is recommended only in limited circumstances such as dentistry or childbirth.

Transfer methods

Glove anaesthesia is a technique where only the hand is numbed. This form of anaesthesia is done by putting the person into trance and then asking them to remember a time when they played in the snow. You get them to imagine holding a snowball and noticing how their hand feels. This can be developed by getting them to relive the experience and be back in the time when their hand was so cold it went numb. This is easily tested by poking the hand with a paper clip or similar.

For people who have never experienced cold, they can be asked to remember a time when they went to sleep on their arm and their hand became totally numb and they just couldn’t feel anything. It is also possible to use dissociation, to suggest that the hand feels as if it belongs to someone else, to continually suggest that they cannot feel their hand at all. Once the hand is numb, it can be used to transfer the ‘numbness’ to the part where the pain is being felt.

Metaphor therapy

People do not always recognize the source of their problems. Pain can be a bodily metaphor: is there a problem in your life that you can’t solve? Is there a 'pain the neck' who you cannot get rid of? Not dealing with an issue can result in persistent pain in the body.  Negative beliefs about yourself are sometimes expressed as pain or other symptoms of illness.  Hypnosis can deal with the psychological issue that underlies it, and end the discomfort.

Direct suggestion

Hypnotic Suggestions can directly influence how the person experiences pain. These can include suggestions that the person feels direct diminution of pain, relaxation, imagined anesthesia, decreased pain unpleasantness, and replacement with non-painful sensations such as heat or cold.


How we think about things affects how we feel. Visualizing the pain and then changing the image is remarkably effective in changing how pain is experienced.


Some chronic pain feeds on itself. The more ill you feel the more despondent you get and that makes you feel even more unwell. Learning to relax, either by mental exercises or through self hypnosis, can break the cycle.


Best Hypnosis Scripts Pain Control Collection

The Hypnosis for Pain Collection contains five scripts with the most effective techniques to control pain. Check it out.