Intrusive Thoughts

Intrusive Thoughts

Here are some tips that may help you about “Intrusive Thoughts” in this interview with Emmy Vadnais, OTR/L and Dr. David Hanscom on New Thinking Allowed.

David Hanscom, M.D. is author of, Back in Control: A Surgeon’s Roadmap Out of Chronic Pain and Do You Really Need Spine Surgery?: Take Control with a Spine Surgeon’s Advice. Dr. Hanscom is an orthopedic complex spinal deformity surgeon who quit his surgical practice in 2019 to focus on teaching people how to break loose from the grip of chronic mental and physical pain – with and without surgery. His insights arose out of escaping from his own 15-year ordeal of suffering with severe chronic pain. As he began to share his approaches with his patients, a predictable sequence of learning evolved. It is reflected in the self-directed action plan that he created, The DOC (Direct your Own Care) Journey. His website is backincontrol.com.

Dr. Hanscom went from being a fearless spine surgeon to depressed and suicidal. He describes his own journey out of chronic pain and anxiety. He describes anxiety as an ‘activated threat response.’ Unpleasant repetitive thoughts can keep a person in a state of threat, cause inflammation, compromise the immune system, and cause physical and emotional pain. Sustained stress can cause physical and mental disease. Repressed thoughts and emotions are more of a threat than ones that are expressed. He offers ways to lower an activated threat response by diverting thoughts, calming down the nervous system, and engaging in activities that are pleasant and enjoyable.

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