Complementary Alternative Cancer treatments

Complementary Alternative Cancer Treatments, are they Effective?

At the end of a recent presentation a man approached me with this question. His wife was diagnosed with breast cancer and she wanted to know what else, beside conventional medical treatment she can possibly do.

Complementary Alternative Cancer treatmentsHe was eager to learn about complementary or non-medical approaches to healing cancer but he was church going person and was concerned about the use of hypnosis. Like many, him and his wife held all sorts of misconceptions about hypnosis. In fact, if it weren’t for their doctor mentioning my name they would never think to attend my lecture.

The short answer to his question about the merit of Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM) for cancer is a resounding YES. Having said that not all CAM for cancer are alike. There are as many methods out there as they are practitioners, but if you are looking for a form of treatment that is considered evidence-based you will find a short list.

This is not to say that research equal effectiveness, far from it. If we keep in mind that what we call evidence-based today was at one point the subject of mockery we must consider there are methods of healing we did not yet discover or researched. Evidence-based simply means there was sufficient interest in one method to the point that funds could be raised to explore it through the tools of science.

Though the medical field has long recognized the benefits of Hypnotherapy, the topic is still poorly understood and certainly under utilized. The British approved the use of hypnosis back in 1955, even the Pope and Roam Catholic Church approved its use in 1956 and last but not least it was approved in the US in 1958.  Still we find its use limited in medical facilities.

In my little corner of the universe this is about to change. From May 2013 patients of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute who visit the Zakim Center for Integrative Care will be able to benefit from hypnosis for cancer. The Zakim Center already offers its patients a wide spectrum of evidence-based practices. Practices such as Acupuncture, Chi Kong and oncology massage have long been researched and the data is promising. Listening to patients testimonials, I for one am very grateful that we live in a day and age where patients can benefit from this union of medical and non-medical methods.

To find the right CAM practice for you, first define the end result you are looking for. This end result can be pain relief or lessening side effects, immune enhancement etc. Done right, this will allow you to narrow your search. And yes, talk to your medical team about your wish to integrate non-medical methods into your cancer care, their answer might pleasantly surprise you.

 

surgery guided imagery

Cancer Patients Undergoing Surgery use Guided Imagery and Hypnosis for Successful Outcome

For many cancer patients, the very thought of having surgery produces anxiety and fear and worry tend to consume our attention. Apart from worrying about potential complications, surgery, even a “minor” one disrupt our lives and means “down  time” for recovery.
hypnosis for Cancer Surgery

Numerous studies confirm that using hypnosis in a clinical setting, and more specifically during and after surgery is beneficial. These studies led many medical facilities and even the all skeptical insurance companies to embrace the use of a short hypnotic intervention for patients as part of their strategy for well being.

One such study followed a group of people who underwent hypnosis, including self-hypnosis, for a period of 15-minutes before their surgery. The results of this study were fascinating to say the least; those using hypnosis and self-hypnosis needed less anesthesia, experienced a lesser degree of blood loss (i.e. their bodies were able to cope with the trauma of surgery more effectively), were found to heal at a faster rate and were able to leave hospital earlier than those in the control group who didn’t use any form of hypnosis.

As this study suggests, hypnosis play a vital role when it comes to mentally preparing a person for cancer surgery. Hypnosis for surgery conditions and prepares the mind for the successful procedure. It also helps to lessen a person’s feelings of anticipatory anxiety and the effects of the physical trauma of surgery on the body. What’s more it can help speed up the rate of recovery. If you are like many of my clients, recovering within the familiar environment of home is preferable to recovery time spent within the clinical environment of a hospital.

Interestingly, I recently treated a client that was scheduled for a bone marrow biopsy – a procedure that is known to be of some discomfort. The client came to see me a day before the biopsy and we worked for an hour and a half. I also gave him a guided imagery CD for Surgery After the treatment had taken place, the client reported back to me and told me that this was the fastest treatment he had ever experienced. Not only did he find the treatment to be fast, he also reported feeling significantly less pain and felt that he recovered at a much faster rate than usual.

From this we learn that hypnosis is not only beneficial in helping a person to prepare for and manage cancer surgery, it can also help you to prepare for and cope with any procedure involving physical discomfort that is needed as part of your overall medical treatment plan.

If you are scheduled to undergo surgery in the near future and wish to be pro-active, feel and be more in control of your journey and mentally prepared consider using hypnosis for surgery. One option available to you is Immersive Healing which utilizes hypnotherapy as its therapeutic vehicle. Immersive Healing can help you improve your odds for a successful outcome and it can be practiced either face to face (in office) or online via Skype.

cancer-hypnosis

What is the Difference between Immersive Healing and Hypnosis for Cancer?

Hypnosis has long been an ally in the fight against, and the healing of cancer. For the most part it was utilized as a therapeutic intervention for treatment side effects. Common uses of hypnosis in cancer treatment were to speed recovery from surgery and ease physical discomfort and emotional distress which is part and parcel of conventional treatments.
alternative cancer hypnosis
So what is the difference between this type of hypnosis for cancer and Immersive Healing? To explain this difference think about a general medical practitioner such as your primary care physician and a specialist like an oncologist. Your PCP is well educated and skilled but he or she is trained to diagnose and prescribe medication. He or she can properly direct you when needed to a specialist of a particular field who has greater skill in that field.

Immersive Healing utilize and an advanced hypnotic protocol called Regression to Cause. This is a specialized protocol that requires a certain level of experience and knowledge. It demands the facilitator will harbor certain qualities and abilities that are not taught in regular hypnosis courses like intuition, the ability to work with and contain immense emotions that are being released etc. This qualities and abilities are not something that can be acquired easily; they must be built into the personality of the facilitator, hard wired if you will.

Furthermore, Regression to Cause as structured in Immersive Healing is a very active or dynamic technique which demands the client be active, part of the process and involved in his or her own experience. Generally speaking, in other hypnotic protocols the client is more passive i.e. he is absorbing rather than letting out.

The more general type of hypnosis, the type which you might be familiar with, uses a hypnotic technique that is known as Direct Suggestion. In this type of practice the client is led into a hypnotic state; once in this state of mind, the therapist embeds positive suggestions and affirmations into the client’s subconscious mind, with the aim of producing more desirable patterns of thought and behavior.

Direct suggestion hypnosis can be extremely effective when carried out by an experienced hypnotherapist. It is especially effective for those who wish to overcome a fear or phobia, or to give up a bad habit like smoking. It has more to do with changing behavioral patterns and thoughts patterns than healing illness. It is not what it was designed to do.

When we are dealing with cancer we need to pull out all the stops; we need to use the most powerful weapon we possibly can in order to fight the illness. I believe that the hypnotic protocol of Regression to Cause is this weapon. It allows us to access the deepest layers of the Subconscious Mind; where the seed planting of the illness is found. By healing the cause i.e. the Mind, we ultimately can heal its effect, the Body.

By identifying, addressing and healing the Subconscious Mind patterns that weighed heavy on the innate immune system and produced the conditions where cancer can develop we eliminate the energy that feed the cancer and kick start the dormant immune response. With a fortified immune system and greater resolve to heal all forms of medical interventions will preform their healing better. This in turn increase your odds for recovery.