In the last few decades, there has been increasing cooperation between Western medical and psychological communities. In the same way that psychotherapy has benefited immensely from the development of more and more effective medications for treating emotional issues such as depression and anxiety, the medical community has begun to use psychological treatments as an adjunct to medical treatment for a variety of illnesses. The fields of medicine and psychology are beginning to believe that the body and the mind are much more connected than Westerners have previously realized.
Issues that commonly have a mind/body connection:
- High Blood Pressure
- Digestive Issues
- Migraines and Severe Headaches
- Neck and Back Pain
- Sexual Issues
As Eastern culture has long been aware, some illnesses seem to be closely related to mental and emotional distress. As continuing research indicates, even clients with illnesses such as cancer or severe neck injury, for example, can benefit from psychotherapeutic treatments. Although such illnesses rarely entirely dissipate strictly through psychological intervention, symptoms and symptom management may be significantly improved. Learning to deal with physical pain, as well as the constraints it puts on one’s emotional and cognitive experience, is a particular specialty of Cognitive-Behavior Therapy. Meditation, structured relaxation techniques and NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) are often utilized in the treatment of chronic pain.