Dopamine has long been known to be linked to positive experiences such as eating and sex. But it's now known to be released when you're in pain, so you may want to try increasing your supply of it--naturally.
Dopamine levels tend to rise when something good happens that exceeds your expectations. The neurotransmitter gives you a pervasive feeling of well-being, making everything seem right in the world.
But dopamine also is released when you're in pain. That is, the same reward pathway that gives you pleasure during great sex or a great meal also releases dopamine when pain signals are received in the brain.
Dopamine and Endorphins
Dopamine and endorphins both seek to alleviate pain. But they have a complex relationship.
On one hand, when endorphins are released in response to pain, dopamine seems to be triggered to move into the frontal lobe of the brain, neutralizing the feeling of pain.
On the other hand, when dopamine levels are too high, they tend to reduce the amount of endorphins available for pain relief. That may be why antidepressants that are designed to reduce dopamine levels sometimes relieve chronic pain--they allow endorphin levels to stay higher than when excessive dopamine is present.
Attaining A Balance
The interactions between dopamine and endorphins illustrate how difficult it is to achieve optimal levels of brain chemistry while using drugs to target one neurotransmitter over another.
The subconscious, however, may be well placed to achieve the necessary balance for pain relief. Because it controls the involuntary functions of the body, it most likely has the knowledge necessary to guide the delicate tradeoffs between neurotransmitters that must occur.
The Role of Visualization
Through visualization statements it may be possible to focus your subconscious on balancing the impact of dopamine and endorphins on the pain process. This could be true for back pain or pain in the neck or other extremities, arthritis pain, fibromyalgia pain, or neuropathic pain (nerve pain).
Visualization statements represent the specific language that your subconscious wants you to read back to it to help ease your pain. They're simple and are targeted directly at the main factors that could bring you relief.
You can obtain these statements by learning how to communicate directly with your own subconscious mind. The process is straightforward and can be done at home by working with a facilitator over the telephone. You you need no special skills and no previous experience in working with the subconscious.
The Balanced Use of Dopamine
It's possible to ask the subconscious whether visualizing an increase of dopamine will be helpful in relieving pain. If at the same time it is also asked about endorphins and the other neurotransmitters involved in pain, it has the opportunity to provide balanced answers. This may be helpful in easing pain.
Ben Plumb is CEO and President of The Visualization Group, Inc. The company's service is delivered by people like himself who personally suffered from years of chronic pain, and used the visualization method described in this article to obtain relief when nothing else worked.