It’s not always easy to take your mind off pain that’s either constantly there or a frequent and unwelcome visitor. Many people with chronic pain find relief through meditation, a relaxation technique where you shift your thoughts away from your pain or change your way of thinking about it. Mindful mediation in particular involves techniques that can alleviate chronic pain. Los Angeles spine surgeons discuss 3 reasons why you may want to give meditation a try.
1. It Changes How You Perceive Pain
Mindful meditation changes how pain is perceived. The goal isn’t to escape from reality, but to develop a better awareness of your situation. Simply find a quiet area or space where you can develop your focus without disruptions. In a recent study, participants reported beneficial results after three 20-minute sessions that took place over a 3-day period.
2. Results May Last Beyond Sessions
The basic concept of meditation is that, once you develop a healthier perception of your pain, you’re more likely to experience less of it. There’s evidence to suggest benefits from sessions may continue even after completing the meditation. These benefits may be further enhanced when coupled with other relaxation methods and efforts to manage stress.
3. It’s More Effective Than Distraction
Some forms of meditation use a repeated statement, vision, or thought (mantra) as a way of distracting the mind. Though distraction techniques can work, being mindful of your pain and shifting your way of thinking about it may be more effective. No form of meditation will ease all instances of chronic pain. However, meditation still has positive therapeutic and analgesic effects.
Meditation has the added benefit of giving you control over your chronic pain, and it’s something most people can safely and conveniently do anywhere. Even short meditation breaks can be beneficial. Meditation may also help you respond better to physical therapy exercises and other treatments or reduce your dependence on painkillers and anti-inflammatory medications.
Meditation will not necessarily work for every person living with chronic pain. If you are looking for an alternative to spinal fusion surgery, Los Angeles surgeons at The Spine Institute can diagnose the source of your pain and determine the most effective method for helping you find relief. Call our office today at 310-828-7757 to schedule an in-person evaluation.