Where does the doctor turn when the NHS tools have been exhausted?
Where does the doctor send that patient who has been investigated to the hilt, has tried all the medications available, has seen every health care professional under the sun and is still attending asking what can be done for their health problems?
Perhaps they have chronic pain, headache, back pain, in need of weight management, smoking cessation, maybe health anxieties, IBS, fibromyalgia, depression, menopausal symptoms, medically unexplained symptoms etc. etc. etc………………………………………
The answer: hypnotherapy and or acupuncture
Acupuncture is recommended by NICE (The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) for migraine and headache (NICE 2012) (Headache Guidence) and also low back pain (NICE 2009) (Back Pain Guidence). Hypnotherapy is also considered by NICE as a valuable treatment for IBS (NICE 2015) (IBS Guidence)? NHS professionals are being trained in mindfulness and hypnotherapy to help them deal with some of the above symptoms in primary care. (PosMT 2009) (PosMT Research)
Acupuncture is widely used in the NHS, in GP surgeries, in pain clinics, by physiotherapists and midwives. Hypnotherapy is also being used in the NHS, here are three example of experienced respected healthcare professionals endorsing hypnotherapy as an effective tool in managing pain, IBS and mental health issues respectively
- Professor Soo Downe OBE, following extensive research has introduced hypnotherapy at the antenatal services at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS trust. Patients have the option to be taught self hypnosis for pain control whilst in labour, reducing the need for pharmacological interventions and enhancing the birth experience for all parties. (Hypnobirthing)
- Professor Whorwell, consultant gastroenterologist, has been using hypnotherapy to manage IBS symptoms since 1994. He has a well established service at the University Hospital of South Manchester. He has over 300 publications on the subject. (Hypnotherapy and IBS)
- GP, Dr. Laura Pogue, lectures all over the country on mental health issues in Primary Care. She has recently implemented The Positive Mental Training programme (PosMT) across Halton and St Helens. This is an RCGP (Royal College of GPs) accredited mindfulness based hypnotherapy training programme for practitioners to utilize in primary care consultations. (Positive Mental Health Training)
PosMT is currently used within the NHS across Britain to treat depression, anxiety, insomnia, stress and various medically unexplained symptoms (MUS). Over 80,000 people have been given the programme, and over 1000 health professionals trained in PosMT.
Acupuncture and hypnotherapy are natural solutions to healthcare problems when all the medical tools have been exhausted. Because they are natural they are totally safe with very few, if any, adverse side effects.
Access to these services in the NHS is unfortunately poor. The services mentioned above are just singular examples of the good work being provided by individual practitioners who are aware of the benefits of these therapies.
Doctors can now refer patients wanting complementary therapies to CNHC registrants as they are all on CNHC’s Accredited Register. This is a promising sign, an indication that the ‘powers that be’ are actually recognising the beneficial and acceptable effects of these therapies, an alternative and fresh approach to health care –
The medical model is not the only model!