for temporary relief from acute pain, hold still; brain shuts off pain signal until next movement
many of the areas that fire in chronic pain also process thoughts, sensations, images, memories, movements, emotions, and beliefs—when they are not processing pain
“each time he got an attack of pain, he immediately began . but what? he visualized the very brain maps he had drawn, to remind himself that the brain can really change, so he’d stay motivated. first he would visualize his picture of the brain in chronic pain—and observed how much the map in chronic pain had expanded neuroplastically. then he would imagine the areas of firing shrinking, so that they looked like the brain when there was no pain. “i had to be relentless—even more relentless than the pain signal itself,” he said. he greeted every twinge of pain with an image of his pain map shrinking, knowing that he was forcing his posterior cingulate and posterior parietal lobes to process a visual image.“
mirror, for motivation, intention, relentlessness, reliability, opportunity, and restoration
the experience of pain is not wholly driven by sensory input from pain receptors but is influenced by the body image. when the brain, because of distorted visual input coming from the binoculars, determines that the pain is coming from a smaller area, it concludes, “less damage.”
a number of people got the greatest pain reduction when the fingers were shrunk; others got most relief when their fingers were stretched; and some got pain reduction as long as the image of the finger was changed in any way.
real-time modification of the visual body image can lower the pain experience. it reminds us that the formation of the sense of the body in pain is dynamic—it is being remade all the time, depending on visual input.
assumption that what a patient feels in his body is the product of brain activity. but golden was able to show moskowitz that the body is as much an avenue into the brain as is the mind.