painFibromyalgia is characterised by chronic widespread pain and a heightened response to pressure.

Its exact cause is unknown but is believed to be a mix of genetic and environmental factors made worse by neurobiological and psychological factors.

Symptoms are not restricted to pain but may include fatigue, sleep disturbance, joint stiffness, also possible difficulty with swallowing, bowel and bladder abnormalities, numbness and tingling, and cognitive dysfunction.

I have seen clients with Fibromyalgia where I have helped them to deal with depressed thoughts at the constant pain and anxiety about the future and what they will be capable of doing.

It’s believed that a substance called Substance P is involved in nociception, which transmits information about tissue damage from peripheral receptors to the central nervous system which are then converted to the sensation of pain.

Substance P is an important element in pain perception and has been associated with the regulation of mood disorders, anxiety, stress, nausea and pain, and there appears to be a link with serotonin. Research on use of anti-depressants has found little response to Fibro, though many believe that it is often brought on by extreme stress or through trauma of some description.

As a solution focused hypnotherapist my aim to to help keep clients focused on having as a normal life as possible, to improve their sleep quality and to increase the serotonin by encouraging them to participate in activities which make them feel happier and laugh, as it promotes serotonin and to over-ride the C-fibre messages of pain.

Case Study*

Shirley is a lady in her 70’s and was diagnosed with fibromyalgia nearly 10 years ago now, she first approached me in 2008 to help her build confidence so she could travel to her son’s wedding, and she found that the relaxation helped her with sleep and had some effect on her pain. So we started to see each other once a month and it helped her to build confidence in going out, to have dental work done, and to go over and babysit her granddaughter. Being focused on a new member of the family helped boost her mood, and having regular therapy helped her keep on top of any negative moods. We worked together for 4 years until I moved in 2012.



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Penny Ling is a widely experienced hypnotherapist who has worked with everyone from top executives to stroke victims since 2007. She has been editor of Hypnotherapy Today Magazine and is a supervisor and mentor for members of the AfSFH and NCH.

Read Penny’s inspiring story How I beat all my phobias, or find out more how hypnotherapy could help your problem by downloading How Solution Focused Hypnotherapy can help with life. Feel free to send Penny a message here.