John Teleska, M.Ed., NBCCH
Integrative Medicine Department, Clifton Springs Hospital &
Private Practice, Pittsford, NY (near Rochester)
Hypnosis for Relief from Migraine Headache
About John Teleska's practice
About John Teleska
Interview w/ Teleska
Teleska's hypno blog
Endorsements by colleagues
What is hypnosis?
What's it good for?
What will I experience?
How many sessions?
About hypnotic ability
...relief from anxiety
fears, and phobias
...birth & comfort
...recovering from trauma
(including sexual abuse)
...people with cancer
Evidence-based medical uses of hypnosis
Articles by John Teleska
Engaging hypnotic ability
Uses of hypnosis
Relief from migraines
Hypnosis and birth
About Milton Erickson
John Teleska's Music Site
"I haven't had a full-blown headache since we started this."
"I no longer worry about when the next headache will come.
And if I start to get one, just relaxing usually gets rid of it;
if not, I take medication, which is more effective than it was
before these sessions."
In my experience
My clinical experience is consistent with what research reports (see "What studies say," below). For the many people suffering from migraines with whom I've worked, 1) at least two thirds learn to decrease the frequency and intensity of their headaches using self-hypnosis; 2) many cease to get migraines all together; and 3) medications, if used, are effective in lower doses.
I suffered migraines for nearly 30 years starting at age 11. As I learned more about my own emotional responsivity that triggered these headaches, they diminished. Now, once or twice a year I get the distorted peripheral vision that for me, signal the onset of a migraine. At this point I do self-hypnosis. I haven't had a migraine headache for more than 10 years. Some people naturally "outgrow" migraines; for me, I think it was a combination of knowing myself better, self-hypnosis, and my body chemistry changing as I've aged.
Each person learns to gain relief in their own way using hypnosis as a tool. For example, clients for whom TMJ is the primary trigger learn to carry less tension in their jaw while they sleep. Others learn to use self-hypnosis in a way that releases habitually carried tensions that seem to function as a trigger. For some, it is less clear the mechanisms within them that is engaged by our work, but we know something shifted: their migraines lessen or simply stop occurring.
"I had the beginning symptoms of a migraine and it never actually came. I don't remember that ever happening before."
What studies say
"Last week I drove several hours to see my parents.
I hadn't done that for two years for fear of getting a migraine.
Everything was fine!"
"You created a space of trust and acceptance that allowed me to find out how I might not have these headaches. In discovering that, I've learned to accept myself in ways I never had before."
"I don't get as many [migraines] and they're not as bad.
I still carry tension in my jaw, but not as much.
I've learned to be more relaxed, more centered."
Bibliography: Hypnosis for relief from migraine headache
Copyright © 2014 by John Teleska. All rights reserved. Updated 7/7/16.