Epilepsy Talk

Even Beginners Can Curb Pain With Meditation… | April 6, 2011

This from NPR — April 6, 2011

Meditation has long been touted as a holistic approach to pain relief. And studies show that long-time meditators can tolerate quite a bit of pain.

Now researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center have found you don’t have to be a lifelong Buddhist monk to pull it off. Novices were able to tame pain after just a few training sessions.

Sounds a bit mystical, we know, but researchers using a special type of brain imaging were also able to see changes in the brain activity of newbies. Their conclusion? “A little over an hour of meditation training can dramatically reduce both the experience of pain and pain-related brain activation,” says Fadel Zeidan, a neuroscientist and the study’s lead author. That finding’s a first, Zeidan says….

For the full story, go to:  http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2011/04/06/135146672/even-beginners-can-curb-pain-with-meditation?ft=1&f=100


  1. I’ve been able to ignore pain most of my adult life.
    My professional occupation is the type of work an epileptic isn’t suppose to do..


    Comment by Mike — April 7, 2011 @ 12:35 AM

    • Yeah Mike, I can relate. I’ve been blessed to be able to endure pain with very little med’s, myself.
      My heart does ache for those that are in pain on a daily basis and can’t seem to find any relief. Maybe this post will help them.
      I like hearing that you’re in a profession that goes against what some folk think, people with Epilepsy shouldn’t be doing. Keep braking that stereotype,it’s people like you that show the world what we can do.
      Stay safe!


      Comment by Charlie — April 7, 2011 @ 2:35 AM

  2. Hi Charlie
    I remember as a kid,(50’s – 60’s) they had advertisements on TV saying that “Epileptics needed to stay away from any mechanical or moving object”.

    I hold everyone with seizures in
    my prayers.


    Comment by Mike — April 7, 2011 @ 3:10 AM

  3. Here two epilepsy myths…

    Myth: People with epilepsy cannot be employed.
    Fact: Many people with epilepsy are successful in all types of professions. Even today, people with epilepsy often do not discuss their medical disorder with co-workers for fear of what others may think. Yet, epilepsy is generally not a condition that gets worse with time.

    Myth: People with epilepsy are physically limited in what they can do.
    Fact: In most cases, epilepsy is not a barrier to physical achievement. In some circumstances, when seizures are not being well controlled, persons with epilepsy may be advised to refrain from certain activities such as driving an automobile, working at heights or working with certain machinery.


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 7, 2011 @ 12:40 PM

  4. I don’t think Epilepsy itself holds anyone back from achieving their goals in the work force. It’s the Dang Meds they treat us with! Big Problem! For Some. 😦

    Love Candi


    Comment by candi — April 9, 2011 @ 3:58 PM

  5. Your exactly right Candi:
    In the 80’s I was over medicated with Dilantin, Mysoline and phenobarbital.(1220mm twice a day)
    I had a slurred speech,talked slow,I looked drunk and doped up,depressed. I was arrested twice on DUI’s…(i don’t drink) that turned out to be false arrests. When they got results from the blood test(s) all the paperwork disappeared.
    When I weened myself down to dilantin only(400mm per day), no one knows I’m epileptic unless I tell them. I started a business and became a community leader.


    Comment by Mike — April 9, 2011 @ 4:32 PM

    • Hi Mike,

      My first med was Dilantin. I don’t remember the dose, but, it didn’t control my seizures. My Sis & BIL watched me. I don’t/didn’t drink either. Yet, they said I appeared Drunk everyday. I went thru 10 yrs of seizures & med changes B4 being placed on Phenobarbital & have been on the same dose (180mg) for over 20 yrs. I Thought my biggest problem was Mandatory afternoon naps(2-4 hr), so didn’t even try to get a job. I tried about 10 yrs ago. I worked part time for 14 mths, then I was fired for Insubordination. (Screamed at the Manager) I had been working alone for 5 straight hrs, no breaks. I learned the next day that Researchers had found a New side effect. ‘Mood Swings’ 😦 All those yrs of periodic screaming at my kid & not even realizing it was meds. 😦 I’m back to babysitting. At least I get enough rest w/ the kid. 🙂 I Envy You! 🙂 But, I am Proud of you for rising above the effects of meds & making a Life for yourself. Personally, I’m scared to work again, cuz I Never want to humiliate myself in Public, like that again. I would Rather have a Seizure!

      Love Candi


      Comment by candi — April 9, 2011 @ 5:30 PM

      • I guess I’m somewhat more fortunate than others. Although my seizures are violent, since my 20’s I only have them while I’m asleep and now that they’re controlled, they only occur 3 days after I miss a dose.
        I’m 56 now. I was self-employed for 21 yr’s in So,California. I had to close shop because illegal aliens had taken over the community. So I packed up and moved to Oklahoma.
        I’m happy to help anyone less fortunate
        in any way I can. I even thought about getting a group together and helping one another financially.
        If I could open shop again,(somewhere) I
        could use you as a secretary, and teach others the ropes.


        Comment by Mike — April 9, 2011 @ 7:11 PM

    • Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 9, 2011 @ 10:00 PM

      • Hi Mike,

        Your in Oklahoma? My Dad grew up in Centrahoma, Ok. About 30 miles outside of Abilene, toward Colgate. 🙂 I lived there for about a yr, in my teens. 🙂

        I would Love to work for you! 🙂 If interested in moving, Chek out Bullhead City, Az. But, We would Love to move into New Mexico, cuz, Hubby & I feel the same as you. We would Love to have a small community of friends & family to help support each other. And Land is pretty cheap there. We’ve been talking about it for YRS! 🙂 But, he has retired, also. (Govt employee: Electrician & jack of all trades) & we lack the funds. It’s a Dream for now. But, who knows. Maybe we will win the Lottery someday. 🙂

        Let me know if you ever travel our way. 🙂 Be glad to give you a space to lay your head. 🙂

        Love Candi


        Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 3:17 AM

      • Forgot to add: All my gran mal seizures have been while sleeping, also. In fact me, Sis & my Daughter are Nocturnal. 🙂 I, also, have a Very high Pain tolerance. 🙂 When I say I hurt, my GF & Hubby know it’s Bad. 🙂



        Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 3:20 AM

  6. Fortunately, I have the advantage of having a freelance business and working at home.

    But, when I was in corporate, I had to do a lot of lying…

    One day, the copy machine outside my office caught fire and everyone was evacuated. I had the door closed and was out cold, on the floor.

    About 20 minutes later, I came out of my office and innocently asked “Where’s the copy machine?” They looked at me like I was from Mars!


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 9, 2011 @ 10:16 PM

  7. Phylis
    Are you saying that blacked out or had a siezure?


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 3:37 AM

  8. Candi
    My wife lives in Prescott,Az. She keeps asking me to move back with her. I’m use to the hot weather because I lived in the Mojave desert in SoCal for 36 yr’s.
    I support Gov, Brewer of Az, and Gov, Martinez of NM. with their stance on immigration. Gov, Mary Fallin of Ok, is the same. We call them “Rosie the Rivoter’s”..LOL!
    I’m a strong activist against illegal immigration.
    I’m updated on Az’s immigration issue(s) on a daily basis.
    I also support Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County.
    I live in SW OK. (Duncan,Ok.) 73 mi’s So, of OKC.
    Everyone has OK. misinterpated. They think it’s all flat land, which it’s not. It’s rolling hills, woodland and farmland.
    I guess I moved back here from SoCal because I was raised on a Dairy Farm in my original home state of Michigan, and the country has never left me.


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 4:19 AM

  9. NOTE:
    You won’t find illegal immigants working in OK, like you do in Az and Ca.
    You’ll see more disabled Americans working than anything.


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 4:26 AM

  10. Hi Mike,

    Bullhead seems to attract More Senior citizens from Callie than Mexicans. 🙂 Although like the rest of the Country we do have our share of them. But, it ain’t as bad as other parts of AZ. I believe they like the Bigger cities where it’s easier to keep a Low Profile & more Jobs. Not much here in BHC. Work is mainly across the River in Laughlin Casinos. But, it ain’t bad here. We are surrounded by the Mtns, if that’s what ya call them. 🙂 More like Mole hills compared to the Mtns I have seen. 🙂 And I live only a few blocks from the River. 🙂 It didn’t take me long to adjust to the Heat, though. One summer & I adapted. But, I am an Army Brat & we learned to adapt to wherever we moved. 🙂

    I know what ya mean about Ok. 🙂 Just depends on where you are. Gramps raised Cows to. But, not Dairy. 🙂 We went to Centrahoma about 10+ Yrs ago. Traveled thru Ok on our way to Ga. & N.C.
    So, I am familiar w/ the landscape changes. Like the rest of this Country, scenery depends on what part of the State you are traveling thru. 🙂


    Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 9:25 AM

  11. I was just reading y’alls interesting comments and stories and for some reason, I got to thinking about this.
    50 Million People around the world have Epilepsy. Of that 50 million, 3 Million live in America.
    Epilepsy sucks no matter your ethnicity, political views, income, or where you live in the world.
    My heart aches for those living in remote places that deal with Epilepsy and no treatment, med’s or doctors at all. it’s beyond my comprehension that somewhere in the world people have Epilepsy and think it’s something else, evil spirits, etc and how bad that must be.
    If there was only one person in the world with it, that would be too many
    Pray for them all


    Comment by Charlie — April 10, 2011 @ 11:35 AM

    • I agree with Charlie. Imagine being unable to get NO diagnosis, NO treatment, NO meds, and live like a pariah?

      We all have our physical and emotional pain, but for the most part, we don’t live in hate and isolation.

      That’s something to be grateful for.


      Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 10, 2011 @ 12:19 PM

    • I agree w/ you Charlie. I read an article about how the PPL in Africa still treat this disorder as if the person w/ Epilepsy was possessed. Exorcism, voodoo are the treatment. That reasoning still exists here in the States, too. Maybe not as bad, but, it’s an outrageous Gross way to be treated for something that can be medically treated. We can Pray for All those who have suffered because of lack of Education, DRS & treatment. I Pray for a Day when Epilepsy Finally has a Cure! It may not be in my Time, but, Someday, hopefully, in time to help our children &/or Grandchildren.

      Phylis I Thank God we personally don’t live w/ the Hate & Isolation. “for the most part” But we know it still exists in every Country, including ours. 😦 I can understand the concept in countries w/out the DRS, Treatments & Education. But, you know, that ain’t the Problem here. It’s the PPL who believe the Myths about EP &/or hold on to their ‘old world’ beliefs/ways. Or just Don’t believe in Medical treatment. What’s even More troubling is that these Are Educated PPL! 😦 Difference: We place Our Faith in Drs & Research And the Lord.


      Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 4:27 PM

  12. Welcome to the site April


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 2:13 PM

    • April, Who’s April? Or are you are talking about the Mth, April? HEHE I woke up to Fall temps this morn, thanks to rain & cold front that moved in last week. Sunshine today, but, I turned my furnace back on to get rid of the chill. 🙂


      Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 4:31 PM

  13. The only thing I miss about Calif, is the Mountains. I lived at the foothills of the San Bernardino Mnts.
    My Father-in-law was a retired Brigadier General. He was CO at Ft Erwin.
    I attended his funeral at Riverside Arlington in Riverside, Ca. or is it Arlington Riverside? I always get that mixed up..LOL!
    I remember when the several AFB’s closed down in the 80’s.
    One not far from me was Norton AFB in SanBernardino,Ca and then March AFB in Riverside.Ca.


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 2:43 PM

    • I love the MTNS. My fav is in Washington. 🙂 As kids, we lived on an Army base there at the base of a Big MTN. Aw shucks the name is in my brain but won’t connect w/ my thoughts. 😦 My next fav is the Mtns of Georgia, (had a home in them Mtns for about 3-4 yrs) S.C into N.C. 🙂 We moved to Ga, cuz, Dallas was threatening to shut their bases down. Then moved again when Atlanta AF base started talking about contracting jobs out to companies. Hubby got fed up w/ it all & transferred from Dept of Defense to Dept of Interior. We went to Utah & found ourselves in Bullfrog, Glen Canyon National Park. Now, those were entirely different Mtns. A site to be seen to really Appreciate. 🙂

      HMMM? I think we got off the subject of Phylis’s article. 🙂 Or Maybe this Is our way of Meditating. Thinking of all the Great places we have been & seen. 🙂 It does alleviate the Pain of not being there anymore. A Little Bit! 🙂


      Comment by candi — April 10, 2011 @ 4:50 PM

  14. I remember when I was having my first MRI. A friend of mine (who is VERY smart), said to me: “Just think of the nicest place you’ve been and picture it in you mind.”

    GREAT advice. I never forgot it.


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 10, 2011 @ 9:52 PM

  15. My first MRI..humm? I don’t remember that, but I remember my first EEG in the 50’s, where they stuck wads a of clay in my hair and then poked wires in my scalp. This was done in a wooden chair at a State Hospital in s room we called the “Buzz” room because that’s where all the shock treatments and lobotomies took place.
    That’s something that’s hard to forget.

    My last MRI I went to have my Hip(side effect from Dilantin) checked out. 1 year later I had to call to get the results. They sent me results
    saying there was nothing wrong with mt wrist and elbow, which had nothing to do with what I went there for.
    But I’m still paying on this.@#!%&@!!


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 10:35 PM

    • Mike, maybe they gave you some other persons results. It happens! Especially after a YR. Shoot, my daughter’s hospital Lost her records. She had been in the EMU for 10 days to determine if she was eligible for surgery. She was. But, when they Finally called her to consult, the records had disappeared. They rescheduled her, but, it was too late. Results showed Epilepsy now involved both sides of her brain & they can’t operate. Meds weren’t working, so they rescheduled her Again (Thank Goodness it’s a County Hospital & she qualifies for assistance) Like me, it took 10 yrs to get her on medication that Would control her seizures. Actually 2 meds. 😦 Topamax & Lyrica.
      Personally, I have never had problems w/ EP tests. Told to relax & I did & it was done. 🙂 Some say the MRI is too noisy. Not that I noticed. 🙂 But, I know others have Fears of enclosed places or strange/loud noises. I feel for them, but, still can’t imagine being Afraid of tests that cause No pain. EEG’s Are aggravating cuz of the glue/paste they use. But, I learned a solution for that. A little Olive or salad oil mixed w/ conditioner works for me. 🙂

      Mike, please retype the URL for the pics. I don’t think the [IMG] parts are necessary. 🙂 After you post, if the URL comes up w/ blue letters, ya got it rite. 🙂


      Comment by candi — April 11, 2011 @ 2:07 AM

    • Mike, that sounds AWFUL!

      The “Buzz Room”on a wooden chair in a State Hospital (like you were “crazy”) where all the shock treatments and lobotomies took place.

      That’s unforgivable and cruel. I can understand why it’s a memory that’s hard to forget.



      Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 11, 2011 @ 3:45 PM

  16. This is a picture of the place:



    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 10:42 PM

  17. maybe one of these will work:


    Comment by Mike — April 10, 2011 @ 10:46 PM

  18. NOTE:
    I’m not trying to hi-jack this thread. Back then very few DR’s knew about epilepsy, so most people with epilepsy was put in places like this.
    In the video(above) you see the place is and has been shut down.
    The name “Kirkbride” is who built the Hospital(s)
    in 1865.
    On the Kirkbride websites(link provided)
    You’ll more videos,pictures and a 54 page forum “forgotten children Hall 18 and Hall 7” (hall 7 was for the Girls, Hall 18 was for boys)
    Stories about how epileptics were treated then have been hidden for many years.
    Feel free to e-mail me if you have questions.

    Sorry Phylis, for deverting the topic.


    Comment by Mike — April 11, 2011 @ 5:44 PM

    • WOW! Now, I think I understand Why my mother never reported our seizures as babes, to the DRS. I guess she was aware of all this, somehow. 😦


      Comment by candi — April 12, 2011 @ 12:28 AM

  19. Take a look at Prison Abuse at http://my.epilepsy.com/discussion/987472
    to read some horror stories about the here and now.

    The stigma and the cruelty have NOT gone away. (As you well know!)


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 11, 2011 @ 6:53 PM

  20. WOW! The list of famous building residents was awesome.

    See “Epilepsy Hall of Fame”) https://epilepsytalk.com/2009/09/13/epilepsy-hall-of-fame/

    It MIGHT give you a chuckle. Or make you cry.

    One favor, could you please register as a subscriber…because every time you post, for some reason, I have to “approve” your comment. 😦


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 11, 2011 @ 7:04 PM

    • Phylis, about registering, who are you referring to?


      Comment by Mike — April 11, 2011 @ 7:14 PM

  21. You, Mike…for some reason, I have to approve each of your posts. I think the subscription thingy is at the bottom of the epilepsy talk home page.

    Does anyone else know?


    Comment by Phylis Feiner Johnson — April 11, 2011 @ 7:29 PM

  22. I’m subscribed to this site, but I’ll checking both boxes and see if that helps.


    Comment by Mike — April 11, 2011 @ 7:50 PM

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    About the author

    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    I've been a professional copywriter for over 35 years. I also had epilepsy for decades. My mission is advocacy; to increase education, awareness and funding for epilepsy research. Together, we can make a huge difference. If not changing the world, at least helping each other, with wisdom, compassion and sharing.

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    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    I've been a professional copywriter for over 35 years. I also had epilepsy for decades. My mission is advocacy; to increase education, awareness and funding for epilepsy research. Together, we can make a huge difference. If not changing the world, at least helping each other, with wisdom, compassion and sharing.

    View Full Profile →

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