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Mayo Clinic on Depression

Depression is the focus of the latest Housecall, Mayo Clinic’s e-mail newsletter. The excellent information includes:

Also, Mayo’s depression section is a resource that everyone with depression must check out.

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Hypnotism “Legitimate” Health Care Treatment

Hypnotism is becoming a more mainstream medical treatment, particularly for pain management, according to the Mayo Clinic Health Letter. It also has a track record of being an effective headache treatment. From the Mayo Clinic:

“A trance often can be induced most quickly in people who are in severe pain. A therapist may suggest that the pain will fade or that an area of pain will become numb. In some cases, hypnosis works as well or better than pain-relieving medications.

“Hypnosis is generally considered safe, but it only works in patients who are compliant. In other words, hypnosis can’t make people act against their own wills. Psychiatrists, psychologists and other health care providers with training in hypnosis can offer medical hypnotism. It’s important to verify that the therapist has experience in treating the medical condition, too.”

In Hypnosis: An Altered State of Consciousness, another Mayo Clinic article, hypnosis and its application to health care is well-described, including what it is, who it’s for, how it works. It also debunks common myths.

The emphasis placed on finding a good provider got my attention. One article says that you should be as careful in finding a hypnotherapist as you are in choosing a doctor.

Hypnosis as a practice is not regulated in most states, so it pays to be very careful when selecting a therapist. Certified lay
hypnotherapists are individuals who have completed 200 or more hours of training in hypnosis but don’t have additional professional health care training. Licensed health care professionals who practice hypnotherapy, such as psychologists, doctors and social workers, are trained in
hypnosis in addition to their university training.

Apply the same care in choosing a hypnotherapist as you would a doctor. Ask someone you trust for recommendations. When you find a potential hypnotherapist, ask questions such as:

  • Do you have training in a field such as psychology, medicine, social work or dentistry?
  • Are you licensed in your specialty in this state?
  • Where did you go to school, and where did you do your internship, residency or both?
  • If you’re a lay hypnotist, how much training have you had and from what school?
  • What professional organizations do you belong to?
  • How long have you been in practice?
  • What are your fees?

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Headache Types: Mayo Clinic’s Online Headache Center

Right after I made a note to myself to blog about different headache types, the latest issue of Housecall, Mayo Clinic’s weekly newsletter, arrived in my inbox. The issue’s feature was, you guessed it, headaches.

Mayo’s online headache center has a wealth of information on headache types, pain meds and self-care. The headache types covered are:

For each type, there is an extensive subset of topics, including signs and symptoms, causes, screening and diagnosis, coping skills, and prevention.

The headache center is a terrific place to discover more about this illness. Poke around for a while — I guarantee you’ll learn something new.

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Full of Pain (Resources)

Pain is the topic of this week’s issue of Housecall, Mayo Clinic’s newsletter. It contains links to detailed reports on how people feel pain, choosing OTC pain relievers and the role of exercise in reducing pain.

To learn more about understanding, diagnosing and managing pain, see the Pain Center on Mayo’s website.