Activate Now
 
ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help
Facebook Google Plus
Fibromyalgia  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & M.E.  Lyme Disease  Natural Wellness  Supplement News  Forums  Our Story
Store     Brands   |   A-Z Index   |   Best Sellers   |   New Products   |   Deals & Specials   |   Under $10   |   SmartSavings Club

Trending News

Decreased levels of vitamin D associated with reduced methylation in African American teens

Sweep Away Senile Cells

PAIN'S SECRET MESSAGE: Why Prince Didn't Need to Die

8 Hacks to Slash Medication Costs

Relief from Common Digestive Distress

New Study Shows Optimized Curcumin Stops Inflammation

7 Natural Ways to Prevent Diabetes

Block The Vascular Origins Of Cognitive Decline

What Foods Can Help Fight the Risk of Chronic Inflammation?

Curcumin: Your Secret Weapon to Speed Muscle Recovery After Intense Exercise

 
Print Page
Email Article

Does Your Brain Have an Effect on Your Pain?

  [ 41 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
By Celeste Cooper, RN • www.ProHealth.com • July 30, 2013


Did you know our reactions to pain get catalogued in our brain? It doesn’t miss a beat. Some say "yes it does" because the brain does not react to chronic pain the same way it does to acute pain.  Hmmm, read on and you will see why I believe that is thinking INSIDE the box. 

Neuroimmaging allows us to see how the brain is functioning and it is used in studying pain. This technology could prove to be a valuable tool for the clinical setting and not just for research.  Neuroradiologists may never be able to use brain mapping to read our minds – gosh I hope not – but it could expose evidence on how our brain orchestrates positively or negatively in regards to therapies and medications.

As the creators of neuroimmaging explored visual trajectories, operating systems, and codes, the scientists were not thinking inside the box. They took the physical exam of brain function and changed it into a movie theater exploding with light forces of what happens in the brain. They were able to see things from a totally different perspective.

Because the brain is very complex, any of us – in pain or not – are at risk of getting stuck in any grieving process by our catastrophic thinking.

Michael Michalko has written a brilliant book, Putting Your Imagination to Work: CREATIVE THINKERING.

He says, “You cannot will a new idea.” I agree with that. We cannot “Will away” pain either, but we can act on it. Among many of Michael’s thought experiments, one struck me specifically.  How could I relate creative thinking to my internal thoughts on pain? Here is his “Thought experiment:”

  1. While sitting at your desk in front of your computer, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.

  2. Now, while doing this, draw the number 6 in the air with your right hand.

  3. Your foot will change direction.

I tried this several times and I looked like a flailing bird doing an out-of-control nose dive. That was the BEST I could do. By golly, he was right; our brain does respond in a categorized way. He says this about that.  “Suppose you want to improve the flashlight.  If you compare it to other flashlights, you are thinking inside the box. Instead conceptually blend your thinking patterns by comparing a flashlight to a garage door opener.”

I “thought” about this and concluded that by conceptualizing pain over and over again in the same way, we lose our ability to be creative. There are a great deal of learned behaviors, even by experts, comparing acute pain to chronic pain. Conceptually it makes sense, but creatively it is completely off base. We should think differently about pain, instead of putting it in its neatly tied up box of negativity. When I compared contrasts and similarities of what my pain perception is to a tree, it changed the way I think about it.

OK, print this off and get creative.   Use your own object, or animal, whatever. Be creative. See if this exercise works for you.

I am not oblivious.

A person in the throes of a migraine, vomiting to the point of exploding blood vessels in their face, can hardly get a grip on conceptual versus creative thinking, (been there), but could comparing a migraine abstractively change future perceptions?  As a migraineur, I do know that certain parts of my brain WAKE UP, even while holding onto the commode. (Maybe that was too visual). I come up with some of my most creative ideas at a very adverse time. I compare myself to Picasso, and that somehow makes me feel better about it all.

The research taking place in neuroscience is exciting, and I write a great deal on healthy coping and ways to defer pain thoughts. I ask myself, “Has the human brain become plastic due to human evolution over decades or centuries? Can we transform this phenomenon?” We should also take great care and tread very lightly, but I think we should tread.

I suggest that we not put chronic pain in a box, like so many others have done, and not just for this exercise. It, too, can be a warning sign that something is physically wrong. For instance, something that has gone undiagnosed for three months to five years can cause “chronic pain.” Ignoring this can be dangerous thinking, too.

I found this particular analogy very enlightening. Leonardo da Vinci was born out of wedlock, and so he was not allowed into university. Mr. Michalko writes that da Vinci was able to enjoy fluidity of thought and his concepts were able to dance with one another, integrating information instead of segregating it – a polymath. Yet, Leonardo da Vinci is considered the greatest genius in history. Could we be boxing ourselves in by relinquishing our right to think creatively?  Wouldn’t you love a doctor that thinks outside the box too? 

Our brain, like it or not, is translating every word we say or think about pain.  We can’t control prejudicial words of others, those get catalogued somewhere. too, but we can change how we deposit our reaction to pain.  It is empowering to know we can think creatively. What we do with the information is totally up to us, but in the end, we are the only ones to benefit from it. So, next time someone says something unkind because they cannot understand your pain, maybe it would be best to just respond with, “Excuse me, you are interfering with my THINKERING.”

_______________

Celeste Cooper, RN, lead author of the Broken Body, Wounded Spirit: Balancing the See-Saw of Chronic Pain [Series] and Integrative Therapies for Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Myofascial Pain: The Mind-Body Connection. (Co-author, Jeff Miller, PhD). Celeste is a fibromyalgia expert at Sharecare and a participant in the PAINS Project.




Post a Comment

Featured Products From the ProHealth Store
Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Energy NADH™ 12.5mg

Looking for Vitamins, Herbs and Supplements?
Search the ProHealth Store for Hundreds of Natural Health Products


Article Comments



Be the first to comment on this article!

Post a Comment


 
20 Helpful Tips for Cleaning and Organizing When You're Chronically Ill

Featured Products

Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get energized with malic acid & magnesium
Optimized Curcumin Longvida® Optimized Curcumin Longvida®
Supports Cognition, Memory & Overall Health
Ultra EPA  - Fish Oil Ultra EPA - Fish Oil
Ultra concentrated source of essential fish oils
Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Vitamin D3 Extreme™
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
FibroSleep™ FibroSleep™
The All-in-One Natural Sleep Aid

Natural Remedies

SAM-e: a Hard-Working Molecule that May Help Ease Pain & Brighten Mood SAM-e: a Hard-Working Molecule that May Help Ease Pain & Brighten Mood
The New Dual Activation Pain Relief Cream The New Dual Activation Pain Relief Cream
Red Yeast Rice - Natural Option for Supporting Healthy Cholesterol Red Yeast Rice - Natural Option for Supporting Healthy Cholesterol
When a Negative is Positive - Goodnighties Recovery Sleepwear When a Negative is Positive - Goodnighties Recovery Sleepwear
Coping When Colds or Flu Catch Up with You Coping When Colds or Flu Catch Up with You

CONTACT US
ProHealth, Inc.
555 Maple Ave
Carpinteria, CA 93013
(800) 366-6056  |  Email

· Become a Wholesaler

· Affiliate Program
SHOP WITH CONFIDENCE
Credit Card Processing
SUBSCRIBE AND SAVE 15% NOW*
Be the first to know about new products, special discounts and the latest health news. *New subscribers only

CONNECT WITH US ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus

© 2016 ProHealth, Inc. All rights reserved. Store  |  Customer Service  |  Guarantee  |  Privacy  |  Contact Us  |  Library  |  RSS  |  Site Map