Will meditation cure my chronic pelvic pain? 5 points to consider

Is there a cure for Chronic Pelvic Pain? Read here. The definition of cure suggests there is a single pathway that will relieve all symptoms every single case.

In a recent BBC article titled Prostatitis: ‘How I meditated away chronic pelvic pain’  Henri Astier honestly, openly and bravely discussed his recovery from chronic pelvic pain. Henri found hope from reading Tim Parks “Teach us to sit still.”  In which Tim describes how he used Vipassana meditation to overcome his chronic pelvic pain. 

Henri would spend up to an hour each day meditating. “Both at home and on public transport.”

For Henri “the solution lay in calming a restless mind.” Our body and minds are connected. We calm help to bring about calm in one when we bring about calm in the other.

Meditation helped Henri to keep his fears in perspective. I am firm believer that our reaction to pain symptoms can dictate our pain experience.  Using meditation to calm our nervous systems when do experience symptoms (and as part of a daily routine) can be incredibly beneficial

In addition to the meditation Henri also used swimming and stretches to bring about significant relief of his symptoms. As a patient of mine he received a bespoke and progressive battery of activities to keep his recovery moving forward

As a former acute and chronic pelvic pain sufferer I too found meditative style breathing incredibly beneficial in my recovery from chronic pelvic pain. It was not THE key to my recovery but part of my adopted tool kit of lifestyle changes

Expert opinion on recovery from Chronic Pelvic Pain

Bevis Nathan is a specialist in pain and post-traumatic disorders, using Osteopathy, Somatic Experiencing, Breathing-and Affect-Retraining based in the UK; who agrees that abdominal breathing can drastically help to improve symptoms of CP and CPPS.

“Diaphragmatic breathing mimics deep sleep breathing, which promotes a relaxation response by various routes. The relaxation response as a whole will facilitate pelvic floor muscle relaxation as part of a global parasympathetic picture. Abdominal in-breath puts a gentle pressure on the pelvic floor that enhances one’s ability to become aware of it.

In addition we can use the soothing influence of music to assist this calming of the nervous system

Dr Don Knox is a senior lecturer in Audio Technology at Glasgow Caledonian University. His main research interests include audio and music analysis and classification, music emotion, and music psychology, with a focus on developing multidisciplinary research into music technology for health and wellbeing. 

“Listening to music can be an effective part of managing chronic pain. Studies show it can reduce perception of pain, anxiety and stress, improve pain tolerance levels, and result in a reduction of drug requirements. The ‘most effective’ music is generally positive, low arousal and bright. Music can distract the patient from persistent pain, increasing feelings of control and improving mood. ”

I want to reach out again to Henri and thank him for his desire to raise the awareness of chronic pelvic pain in men. Men do suffer with chronic pelvic pain too. And, can recover from pelvic pain too!

Will meditation cure my chronic pelvic pain? 5 points to consider

1.) Meditation is not about becoming a Zen Buddhist monk or learning the art of the Jedi. It is not about reaching enlightenment or learning to levitate. The initial stages of learning meditation style techniques is simply about giving your system a chance to calm down.

2.) Use assistance, make it easy for yourself. Use music if needed (see above comments from Don Knox) or guided meditations like Headspace, Calm or these free recordings from my mindfulness teacher 

3.) Make it accessible. You should be able to carry out your practise anywhere (within reason.) Learning meditation techniques in sitting with closed eyes for example is great for commuting. Plug in your headphones and use the aids mentioned above to welcome a more relaxed state of body and mind in a 10 to 20 minute meditation.

4.) Don’t stress about it. It is called a meditation or mindfulness practice because it takes practice. It has been surmised (wrongly or rightly) that it takes 10,000 hours of dedicated practice to master any skill. Stick with it, some days/times will be easier, some not so. This is the same for all aspects in life in their infancy. I have been meditating for 20 years and I have yet to ‘master’ it. Start off small and realistic (10 minutes) one to two times per day. Build on this over time

5.) Use it in conjunction with an holistic recovery programme. Early stage recovery programs should aim at soothing an often overly excited nervous system. I teach my patients that meditation/mindfulness/quiet time can form part of a successfully targeted and bespoke recovery program This is best applied through a therapeutic alliance with honest, open guidance from both patient and therapist. Click here for more details on my approach 

Testimonials From Clients

“Having suffered with Pelvic Pain to the point where I had to be hospitalised for a number of nights. Karl has a great understanding and level of empathy with his patients. Appreciating exactly how they feel and what they are going through”

To read blog posts from my patients about their successful recovery from their chronic pelvic pain and chronic prostatitis experiences, in their own words click here

Testimonials

Please find below a sample of some of my patient testimonials from over the years. I have not included them ALL here. Instead I have picked a handful of those that demonstrate a wide range of my skill sets, outcomes and patient opinions. I would therefore hope that you are able to gauge how I approach my methods of treatment. If you have any questions regarding any of these comments below or would like to know more about my treatment please contact me here

My aim is to take every individual patient I see and treat them as individuals. If I am not achieving this then I believe I am letting down that patient. It is therefore imperative that my approach is bespoke and tailored. Failure to do so is likely to result in an unsuccessful outcome.

From those testimonials listed below I hope to give you a flavour of what you can expect if you come and see me as a patient.

 

Read All Reviews