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Louise Hall Hypnosis Health Article - October/November 23

Chronic Pain: When Our Body’s Alarm System Gets Stuck

Have you ever been rudely awakened by a blaring alarm, only to discover that there’s no emergency, there’s no break-in? Perhaps it’s just an oversensitive car alarm triggered by a few leaves falling on the car in a gust of wind. It’s annoying, isn’t it? Well, imagine if that alarm wouldn’t shut off – even days, weeks, or months later. That’s a rough comparison to how chronic or persistent pain works in our bodies.

You see, our body is incredibly smart. It has its built-in alarm system – pain. When you touch something hot or step on a sharp object, your body screams, "Ouch! Move your hand!" or "Lift your foot!" But what happens when this alarm system gets a little... overzealous? What if it keeps ringing long after the initial injury or problem has been resolved?

This is where we dive into the fascinating (and sometimes perplexing) world of chronic pain. A significant misunderstanding about persistent pain is that it's a continuous signal of ongoing damage. But, this isn't always the case. Imagine turning the volume up on your music system and then forgetting how to turn it down. The music isn't necessarily bad, but the volume certainly is uncomfortable!

Chronic pain is somewhat similar. It isn't always about an ongoing injury or damage, but more about our central nervous system (the body's music system, if you will) getting its volume settings wrong. In essence, the pain senses have been cranked up way too high, and they've become stuck in that "loud" mode. It's like your body's alarm system is constantly yelling, "Hey! Something's wrong!" even when everything's actually okay.

Now, why would our bodies do this to us? For some, it might stem from an initial injury or ailment that made the central nervous system more sensitive. Once that injury heals, the sensitivity remains, like an echo. For others, it might be related to stress, emotional factors, or other internal triggers. Sometimes, the exact reason remains elusive.

But here's the good news: just as we can adjust the volume on our music systems, there are ways to "tune down" this heightened sensitivity in our bodies. Hypnotherapy, medications, exercises and mindfulness practices can help retrain the central nervous system to find a more acceptable volume. It's like teaching the alarm to recognize when it's reacting to just a leaf and not a real break-in.

So, the next time you or someone you know talks about chronic pain, remember, it's not always about a present injury or damage. It might just be a body's alarm system that needs a little recalibrating. Let's be compassionate and understanding, for our bodies are wondrous, intricate, and sometimes just a bit overprotective. If you're someone living with chronic pain, know that there's hope. It might take some time, patience, and the right kind of help, but finding that "acceptable volume" is possible.

Stay well and keep listening to your body – even if, sometimes, you need to adjust its volume.

© Louise Hall, Louise Hall Hypnosis

Louise Hall is a Certified Professional Hypnotherapist based in Coventry, helping people to overcome issues they are struggling with, allowing them to take back control and transform their lives with hypnosis. Visit to see how hypnosis can help you.