September 7, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research

Researchers at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College’s Division of Graduate Education & Research have conducted a systematic review for non-pharmacological interventions for sleep and insomnia during pregnancy.

The researchers conducted an electronic search of multiple online databases from inception up until March 2013. Of 160 articles screened, 7 met the inclusion criteria. 3 trials were prospective randomised controlled trials, one was a prospective longitudinal trial, one experimental pilot study, and two were prospective quasi-randomized trials.

The researchers concluded that exercise, massage, and acupuncture may be associated with improved sleep quality during pregnancy, but that due to the low quality and heterogeneity of the studies yielded, a definitive recommendation could not be made. Further higher quality research was deemed necessary.

You can read full details of the systematic review here:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23997252

August 30, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Cognitive Hypnotherapy, Hypnotherapy

Phobias are a common source of distress, so common in fact that in the US phobias are the most common form of ‘mental illness’ among women and the second most common in men over the age of 25. Hypnotherapy for phobias is therefore a therapy option that is often sought out, and it’s one that can have profound results in helping people with what can be a disabling problem that severely limits quality of life.

There is a huge range in the phobias in which people can develop, from social phobias connected to anxiety around people or certain social circumstances, and more specific phobias that connected to certain triggers such as lifts, dogs, heights, flying etc. Where a phobia is tied to the pairing of a specific stimulus to a negative emotion during an early formative experience there is a huge range of subjects that can become the source of phobic reactions since the stimulus becomes automatically associated with the emotion in later life. This means people can develop phobic reactions to nearly anything, providing the early sensitizing experience is strong enough. Equally so for some people there may well be no conscious memory or realization of why a given subject has become the source of a phobic reaction.

What is common for many people experiencing a phobia is that they are fully aware their reaction is disproportionate to the actual threat posed, and yet this can have little impact on their experience. This can leave people feeling frustrated, powerless and stuck. That hypnotherapy works with people subconsciously is one of the reasons why it can be such a useful method of therapy for this issue.

acupuncture & hypnotherapy Berkhamsted, Milton Keynes

Anybody who experiences a phobia already knows what it’s like to be hypnotized,  since what they’re currently hypnotized with is all of the negative imaginings, the  terrifying mental rehearsal, and the negative predictions about what would happen in  the future were they were to be in the circumstance that produces their anxiety.  These imaginings in the forms of mental pictures, feelings and sounds we take  completely for granted since they are such a normal part of life but they serve as the  programming that influences our future experience. Hypnotherapy helps with  phobias in a number of different ways, and in a way that it always tailored to each  person, but in part it works by helping you use the same internal machinery of your  imagination in a way that is empowering rather than dis empowering, and helps you  create the kind of experience where you’re calm and comfortable in a circumstance that previously produced fear and anxiety.

When you combine these hypnotic exercises with powerful techniques that can help clear up early sensitizing experiences that are the roots of phobia, then you have the possibility of creating a much more positive kind of future to live into.

My approach is to treat people and their own particular problem as completely unique and as such therapy is fresh for each person in an environment that’s supportive and understanding. If you suffer with a phobia, and are curious about how hypnotherapy could help you, please feel free to get in touch with me on 07717 515 013 or by email at sean@seanheneghan.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

August 14, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research

Pelvic pain and back pain are common in pregnancy with two thirds of women experiencing low back pain, and almost 20% of pregnant women experiencing pelvic pain. During the advancing stages of pregnancy pain can severely impact sleep, mood, and quality of life.

The esteemed Cochrane Collaboration have conducted a review of trials to assess the effects of interventions for preventing and treating pelvic and back pain in pregnancy. This review included 26 randomised trials comprising results from 4093 pregnant women.

The researchers note that for pelvic pain there was moderate-quality evidence that acupuncture significantly reduced evening pain better than exercise; both were better than usual care and acupuncture was significantly better than sham acupuncture for improving evening pain and function, but not average pain. Evening pain relief was the same following either deep or superficial acupuncture. Acupuncture improved pain and function more than usual care or physiotherapy and pain and function improved more when acupuncture was started at 26- rather than 20- weeks’ gestation. Ear acupuncture significantly improved these outcomes more than sham acupuncture.

Overall the authors concluded that moderate-quality evidence suggested that acupuncture or exercise, tailored to the stage of pregnancy, significantly reduced evening pelvic pain or lumbo-pelvic pain more than usual care alone. Acupuncture was significantly more effective than exercise for reducing evening pelvic pain.

Acupuncture was more effective than physiotherapy at relieving evening lumbo-pelvic pain and disability and improving pain and function when it was started at 26- rather than 20-weeks’ gestation, although the effects were small.There was no significant difference in evening pelvic pain between deep and superficial acupuncture.

For full details of the trial, click here:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23904227

July 24, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research

Acupuncture researchers in Brazil have been investigating acupuncture and fibromyalgia, and particularly the action of needling the multiple tender points which characterize the condition. Fibromyalgia is a chronic rheumatic disorder characterized by a multitude of symptoms such as muscular skeletal pain, numbness, tingling and stiffness, and often fatigue and disturbances in sleeping. Often there can be co existent bowel and bladder problems and anxiety or depression. Around 2-4% of the population suffer with fibromyalgia with females far outweighing males and considerable variation in how each individual manifests the symptoms.

This small study aimed to assess the effect of using acupuncture specifically at the tender points of the condition, and eight female patients were assessed for pain tolerance, depression and anxiety scores and quality of life measurements over the duration of the treatment. The women received a two month course of acupuncture for fibromyalgia.

The researchers note that by the end of the study (details of which you can find here) they observed a reduction in the pain threshold and sensitivity, and improvement in the areas of anxiety and depression and quality of life. This study was reported on at the about.com’s page on Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue which also contains lots of other useful information.

The British Acupuncture Council also produce a fact sheet on Fibromyalgia detailing research regarding traditional acupuncture and the condition. The British Acupuncture Council are the primary governing body for the practice of classical or traditional acupuncture in the UK. All members of the British Acupuncture Council (of which I’m one) have had an extensive training in traditional acupuncture to degree level.

If you’re curious about what acupuncture could do for you, feel free to telephone me on 07717 515 013 or email me at sean@seanheneghan.com

 

 

 

 

July 15, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research, Sean's opinion

Researchers in Brazil have been investigating the effects of acupuncture on sleep parameters, quality of life measures, and symptoms of depression in post-menopausal women.

This study was a double blind, placebo controlled randomized controlled trial and included 18 women aged 50-67 years old. The participants were not using hormonal therapy, anti depressants or hypnotic medications and the groups were randomized into two groups: those receiving ‘real’ acupuncture and those receiving a ‘sham’ form. The researchers then performed ten sessions of acupuncture over a period of 5 weeks.

The researchers report that comparison of the groups post acupuncture treatment revealed that those treated with ‘real’ acupuncture showed significantly lower scores on the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, and showed better improvements in quality of life than the group treated with the sham form of acupuncture.

For me as I’m sure is the case for many acupuncturists, double blind trials of acupuncture cannot be performed without compromising the quality of acupuncture delivered in the trial, which is one of the many pitfalls in assessing acupuncture in the context of research. So what is interesting in this trial is the positive result despite that what is delivered in the trial is likely to be a less than optimal form of the treatment.

You can find all the details of the trial here:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22943846?dopt=Abstract

 

I provide acupuncture in Berkhamsted at Berkhamsted Chiropractic Clinic and you can reach me on 07717 515 013 if you have any questions about acupuncture and it’s suitability for you.

 

 

July 10, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research

Researchers at The Jaseng Hospital of Korean Medicine have been investigating acupuncture for back pain and comparing the use of medication versus a novel approach to acupuncture called motion style acupuncture treatment (MSAT). This particular variation on acupuncture involves patients engaging in stretching exercises while the acupuncture needles are situated in areas used for treating pain. The researchers compared this kind of acupuncture with injections of diclofenac, a drug commonly used for pain relief.

A group of 28 patients who received the motion style acupuncture reported a reduction of  pain levels of 46% on average in 30 minutes, while the other 28 patients who had the drug injection had their pain level drop 8.7% in the same amount of time. The level of physical disability in the group treated with acupuncture was also reported to be lower.

At six months post treatment the pain levels were equal among both groups, but patients treated with the drug were hospitalized for a longer period of time.

According to the researchers, the study has shown the effectiveness of motion style acupuncture treatment for acute low back pain patients with severe disability, and can reduce the treatment period in the short term. It is the first study of Oriental Medicine for pain relief that has received international recognition through the PAIN according to the website Acupuncture Today which reported on the study.

In the UK The National Institute of Health and Clinical excellence currently recommend doctors consider a course of ten acupuncture sessions in the management of patients with early non specific lower back pain. If you suffer with low back pain and are curious how acupuncture could help you, please feel free to ring me on 07717 515 013 or email me on sean@seanheneghan.com

I’m a member of The British Acupuncture Council and am based full time at Berkhamsted Chiropractic Clinic.

 

July 9, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Cognitive Hypnotherapy

“A yo yo dieter with many failures behind me I realised that high blood pressure and associated health concerns needed a more intelligent response than yet another diet. I looked at many websites until happening upon Sean’s. I was struck by his qualifications and experience.

From that first telephone conversation I have been completely at ease, knowing that he understood my situation. He has helped me to the realization of where my problems really lie and of my ability to overcome them.

Whilst I have been losing weight (and continuing to do so) I experienced none of the negative feelings of fatigue, boredom, deprivation that so often accompany weight loss. Never before have I felt that this is not a ‘diet’ but a new way of eating more healthily to carry me into the future. I am amazed at how far I have come and I cannot thank Sean enough. He has been so supportive and empathetic. Whilst some of the subjects I have confronted have been challenging, I was totally able to face them knowing that I had his expert support and guidance.”

Heather, Hertfordshire

 

If you’re curious about hypnotherapy for weight loss or another issue you might be suffering with, please feel free to contact me on 07717 515 013 or email me at sean@seanheneghan.com with any questions you might have.

July 8, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Cognitive Hypnotherapy, Hypnotherapy, Research

In many countries the use of complementary and alternative approaches to healthcare is increasing. Researchers recently distributed a questionnaire to all GP’s registered within the Liverpool Primary Care Trust to determine the referral patterns and attitudes towards the various complementary medical approaches among GP’s. This survey was a follow up to questionnaires collected in 1999.

The researchers reported that the most popular complementary therapies are still acupuncture, hypnotherapy and chiropractic, with the least popular being aromatherapy, medical herbalism and reflexology. GP’s felt most comfortable with acupuncture and expressed a greater desire for it to receive NHS funding than for other therapies.

In recent years acupuncture has received an increased level of endorsement from NICE – The National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence, which currently recommend the use of acupuncture in the short term management of lower back pain, tension headaches and migraines. NICE set the recommendations and treatment guidelines for doctors and medical professionals in the NHS regarding the treatment of patients.

The British Acupuncture Council is the main regulatory body for the UK’s 3000 traditional acupuncturists. All it’s members, of which I’m one have had an extensive training in Acupuncture to degree level involving a training that typically lasts 3-4 years.

I have had extensive experience and training in Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine and hypnotherapy and provide traditional acupuncture and hypnotherapy at my clinical base in Berkhamsted.

If you’re suffering with a physical or emotional problem and you’re wondering what acupuncture or hypnotherapy could do for you, then please feel free to ring me on 07717 515 013 or email me at sean@seanheneghan.com.

 

You can find details of the research into GP’s attitudes toward complementary approaches here:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23574689

 

 

July 8, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Cognitive Hypnotherapy, Hypnotherapy

acupuncture & hypnotherapy Berkhamsted, Milton KeynesHypnotherapy for confidence is something many people ask about when they are thinking of having hypnotherapy. Problems with confidence are very common, and yet it tends to be something people suffer with silently often feeling that the problem is unique to them.

Cognitive Hypnotherapy offers a safe, gentle and powerful way of helping you overcome any barriers from the past that may be hampering your experience of confidence in the present, and helps put you back in control of your emotional state.

Its often the case that problems with confidence stem from limiting beliefs we have about ourselves and what we’re capable of that are operating underneath our conscious awareness. This often creates the experience of being emotionally hijacked in the present by uncomfortable feelings we don’t fully understand; in relation to confidence we can feel overpowered by a sense of not being able to cope with situations we face, or that we lack an ability in an area in which its required.

Cognitive Hypnotherapy has some wonderful ways and means of identifying these limiting beliefs that may be contributing to the problem and working with them creatively so they lose their power in negatively impacting the present. Cognitive hypnotherapy in addition helps you to relax, and by using your mind and imagination creatively, promotes living into a much more positive kind of experience instead. For many people who are experiencing problems with confidence, this may manifest as being more comfortably calm and at ease in those areas of life that previously evoked feelings of stress and anxiety.

I provide hypnotherapy for problems with confidence and a wide variety of other issues at my hypnotherapy clinic in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire. If you’re curious about how hypnotherapy could help any problems you might have, then please feel free to telephone me on 07717 515 013 or email me at sean@seanheneghan.com.

 

 

June 19, 2013 · by Sean Heneghan · Acupuncture, Research

An interesting study in The Journal of Psychiatric Research has studied the impact of combining acupuncture therapy with a commonly used anti-depressant, paroxetine.

The trial was a 6 week randomized controlled trial with a 4-week follow-up and involved 160 patients with major depressive disorder. The trial participants were randomly assigned to receive either paroxetine alone, or paroxetine combined with 18 sessions of manual acupuncture or electrical acupuncture.

The researchers noted that the addition of manual acupuncture and electro acupuncture produced a significantly greater reduction from baseline in depression scores than the use of paroxetine alone, and that the clinical response was markedly greater in manual acupuncture (69.8%) and electro acupuncture (69.6%) groups than the group treated with paroxetine alone (41.7%). The proportion of patients who required an increase dose of the anti-depressant due to symptom aggravation was significantly lower with manual acupuncture (5.7%) and electro acupuncture (8.9%) than paroxetine alone (22.9%)

At 4 weeks follow-up after the end of their acupuncture treatment, patients with electro acupuncture, but not manual acupuncture, continued to show significantly greater clinical improvement. The incidence of adverse events was not different in the three groups.

The researchers concluded that acupuncture can accelerate the clinical response to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and prevent the aggravation of depression, and that in addition electro acupuncture may have a long-lasting enhancement of the antidepressant effect.

 

You can read the full details of the trial here:

http://www.journalofpsychiatricresearch.com/article/S0022-3956(13)00052-6/abstract

 

 

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