The power of equanimity for pain reduction

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Written by  Bastian Fox Phelan in Wellness

“Pain is a serious health issue,” Dr Bruno Cayoun says.

Pain is complex and subjective, however it is required for survival. “Interestingly, there are no pain receptors and no pain fibres in your body,” Bruno says. “Pain is a response to the perception of threat.”

The medial prefrontal cortex is the part of the brain responsible for self-referential processing. It’s the part that ruminates, remembers past experiences and projects future experiences. When we’re engaged in a task, this part of the brain goes to sleep. However, when scientists studied people with chronic pain, they found that while engaging in concentration tasks, this part of the brain remained active. People who transition from acute to chronic pain have created links within the brain between the experience of pain and learning.

“So, can we unlearn pain?” Bruno asks. “Mindful studies have shown that chronic pain can be unlearned.” Mindfulness is heightened sensory awareness without identifying with or judging what you are experiencing.

However, not all clinicians are skilled enough in mindfulness to teach their patients who suffer chronic pain, and not all people with chronic pain want to sit down and contemplate their pain – “it really is hell sometimes,” Bruno says.

Bruno tells us about a study that aimed to extract the most active component of mindfulness – equanimity – and see whether this was something they could teach pain specialists, so they could teach their patients.

Scientists asked people in the study to observe their pain objectively. A mindful exercise involved observing and measuring the pain using very different characteristics: “Is it very heavy, very hot, very still, very dense, very loose, very tight? Does it move? What shape is it?”

Bruno shares with us the experience of a woman with chronic pain after a car accident. After doing the mindful exercise, she had a significantly lower estimation of the amount of pain she was in: 3 out of 10 on the pain scale rather than 6 to 9 out of 10. The next part of the exercise was to introduce an element of unconditional acceptance. Much of the ‘negative’ qualities (heavy, dense, hot) were diffused after this, and her pain was rated only 1 out of 10. Even after the exercise had finished, she said that the pain was gone. “For years, we have been teaching this approach for emotional regulation,” Bruno says. Because there are no pain receptors and no pain fibres, this also works for physical pain.

Looking at pain, for just 30 seconds each time, and continuing to practice this mindful exercise with pain was highly successful. “It may change habits that lead to chronification, especially if we start early, before chronification begins,” Bruno says, “It is also a cost-free practice.”

MiCBT Teaching - Japan

Wednesday, October 21, 2015
主催 MiCBT 日本研究会

昨年度に引き続き、今年度もオーストラリアの MiCBTInstitute ブルーノ・カイユン博士の 許可の元、内藤美加子先生による「マインドフルネス統合認知行動療法(MiCBT)」トレー ニングコースを2つ実施するご案内をすることとなりました。
「2日間体験入門ワーク・ショップ」と、そこで学んだことを実際に臨床現場で活用した い方のための「臨床実践基本コース」です。ご関心のあるみなさん、ぜひ MiCBT を一緒に 学びましょう。 MiCBT 日本研究会事務局長 馬見塚珠生
① 日間体験入門ワーク・ショップ MiCBT を基礎からじっくり学ぶコースです。
時 :2015 年 11 月 21 日(土)&22 日(日) 10 時~17 時 ところ :ドーンセンター(大阪府男女共同参画・青少年センター)
最寄駅:京阪「天満橋」駅、地下鉄谷町線「天満橋」駅から徒歩 5 分
受講料 :26,000 円(基礎編+上級編の CD 付※1) 定 員: 40 名 参加資格:医師、臨床心理士、精神保健福祉士
② 臨床実践基本コース※2

MiCBT を実際に臨床現場で活用したい方のためのコースです。①の 日間体験

入門 で学んだ知識をもとに、7 回分のスカイプによるグループ・セッション※3 を行 います。
時 : 2015 年 11 月29 日(日),12 月 13 日(日),20 日(日),27 日(日)、
2016 年 1 月 10 日(日),17 日(日),24 日(日) いずれも 10 時~12 時 受講料 :21,000 円 定員: 10 名(先着順とさせていただきます※4) 参加資格:医師、臨床心理士、精神保健福祉士

※1: 2014 年 7 月 6 日に京都で開催された WS を受講された方はすでに基礎編をお持ちですので、上級編のみの配
布になります。受講料は 2,000 円の割引となります。
※2:①の MiCBT2 日間体験入門 WS を履修された方のみお申込みいただけます。
※3:MiCBTInstitute の規約により、2 日間体験入門 WS の履修だけでは MiCBT を患者さんに適用することはできませ ん。必ず、7 回分のスカイプによるグループ・セッションを修了される必要があります。なお、スカイプによるグル ープ・セッションは、全日程への参加が必要です。


●申し込み方法:MiCBT 日本研究会事務局までメールにて
理士の方は臨床心理士番号(研修ポイント申請予定) を明記の上、お申込みください。

* 日間体験入門 と臨床実践基本コースの同時申込みも可能です。
●申し込みメールアドレス:MiCBT 日本研究会事務局
●申込み期日:2015 年 11 月8日(日) 【定員になり次第〆切らせていただきます】

BRISBANE: Upcoming 8-week MiCBT courses with Patrea O'Donoghue.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

These 8-week courses offer a structured method that effectively re-trains your brain and starts extinguishing unhelpful automatic thinking and reactive patterns. You’ll develop greater self-awareness and self-acceptance, the ability to settle yourself and stay calm, and be more assertive.   

CAPALABA starting: Wed 14th Oct 2015 (evenings). Address: Redland Community Centre, 29 Loraine St, Capalaba. 

PADDINGTON (Brisbane) starting: please express your interest for 2016 programs. Address: The Old Church Hall, 78 Enoggera Tce (cnr Surrey St), Paddington

Contact: 0410 264 224 or

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