I recently recorded a new meditation, supporting a child suffering from Pain and Discomfort. It’s available on the Shop page and I promised a follow up Blog, so here it is!
My journey with our children saw us spend many months in hospital, due to them both being born prematurely, 1 year apart. Part of this journey was an incredible insight into the lives of families with children who suffer and are in pain on a daily basis… it was terrifying to watch, I was a new Mum, with my teeny tiny babies hooked up to machines to keep them alive, and the odds of good health not in their favour. Would our family journey as these families were?
Well at times it’s been a rocky road, however despite the statistics, and all the illnesses/conditions the medical team were obliged to inform us that could happen, most didn’t and we have a wonderful healthy life. When it has been rocky and we’ve been unwell (for months!) we use meditation as a lovely support.
I know Meditation has huge health benefits, but for me it’s more about the emotional benefit… looking into the science behind it all has been enlightening and once again confirms why I love it so much and why I wish for all children to be given this powerful healing gift!
So here’s the science stuff!
The ‘relaxation response’, the opposite to the Fight or Flight Mode, is activated when we meditate. This results in many biological changes that lead us to experience a relaxed body. When we are relaxed, our body can return to it’s normal state of repair, maintenance, digestion and so on. All these functions can be placed on hold when we are in the Fight or Flight Mode. When we experience pain or stress, we enter this heighten agitated and alert state.
It makes sense to want to activate the relaxation response regularly. The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners states that “The relaxation response may be associated with greater pain tolerance as it has the potential to:
- enhance the brain’s responsiveness to endorphins
- reduce inflammation
- cause muscle relaxation
- reduce hypervigilance and desensitise central pain pathways
- enhance mood and reduce emotional reactivity to pain.”
Further to this, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) published a fascinating study conducted by MIT and Harvard Neuroscientists, on the benefits of meditating regularly to reduce pain. The study shows that regular meditation can give a person the ability to turn the pain signals down, and not to get stuck in the pattern of noticing the painful area.
With guided meditation I feel we can give the child a different focus, one that is peaceful, loving and nurturing. Meditation can give them time out, and with regular practice, empower them to be more in control of their own health and wellbeing.
And there was lots more science stuff, just google it! 🙂