Urgent Request for Assisstance From Icarus Online


There is and urgent and very serious case that Icarus is working on with Help a Squaddie, please read, share and help in whatever way you can.

Thank you

https://icarusonline.net/urgent-request-for-financial-support-for-a-royal-marine-veteran/

ICARUS Online


File 24-04-2018, 14 59 03

I wanted to share a link to an update from ICARUS Online, the non profit organisation I set up this January with my freind and colleague David Bellamy.

It is gaining momentum really fast and we are helping more and more people, and more and more people are helping us which is awesome. It’s all about teamwork and really positive and powerful collaboration to get things done.

So here’s the link to the website and another directly to the blog post.

https://icarusonline.net/icarus-online-supported-by-scottish-fire-rescue-service/

https://icarusonline.net

Simon

Mind-Matters Podcast Series #4: Judith Hammond


This episode is a conversation with Judith Hammond who I first met in 2013 as we were on the same NLP Trainers course. Judith tals about being abused by her mother physically, mentally, verbally and psychologically/emotionally.

Judith explains how this conditioned her through her life and how she coped with this and work place bullying, abusive relationships and always managing to find the reserves to be there for her own kids despite all this.

It’s a deep and emotional conversation full of amazing insight into her life and how she has dealt with traumatic experiences. I have no doubt that like me, you will gain so much from it.

If you enjoyed listening to this episode and the others then please share them with your friends, family, colleagues and leave your thoughts and comments and your own experiences.

 

 

ICARUS Online in the News


At the beginning of the week I was interviewed by a journalist from my local paper the Press and Jornal and talked about the work that me and David Bellamy are doing to help bring change to the military charities sector and also to speed up access to treatment for veterans, uniformed services & their immediate families.

Have a read and please share.

Thanks

https://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/fp/news/aberdeenshire/1438690/turriff-based-ex-marine-sets-up-new-helpline-for-former-military-personnel/

Mind-Matters Series Video #10: Refresh Your Mind & Body


This is a short video about refreshing your mind by moving your body. It’s based on the simple principle off doing something positive for yourself when you feel good and making it a habit, because when it becomes a habit, it makes it much easier and more natural do something positive for yourself when you feel negative or unwell.

Get started today no matter how you feel and begin to make your new habit.

 

Mind-Matters Podcast #2: Tamsin Astor


This week started with an interview for my Mind-Matters Podcast and in this second epsiode I talk to Tamsin Astor PhD who talks about dealing with her youngest son being diagnosed at the age of just 2 with Burkitt’s Lymphoma, whihc is a cancer of the lymphatic system.

She talks about the struggle to get her concerns heard and recognised by the doctors, hearing the diagnisis and dealing with the whole treatment process and being strong for her son, her family and herself.

She talks later about her divorce and how now, ten years on her son is clear and healthy and how they are planning a ten year celebration of him being clear.

It’s a highly emotive story, hugely inspirational and I hope you get as much from it as I have.

You can find out more about Tamsin by going to her website www.tamsinastor.com

Click on the link below to go to the Podcast and click on episode 2 to hear the interview with Tamsin.

Enjoy

Mind-Matters Podcast

ICARUS: Please Help to Share Who We Are and What We Do


This is just a quick post to ask all of my wonderful 10,477 followers who will see this messsage to please click the link below and click Like on the new Facebook page for the not for profit organisation that I have set up with my friend and colleague David Bellamy.

It will make a massive difference for us to have every one of you liking and sharing our page as it will help us achieve our aim of helping as many people as possible in the UK’s uniformed services that are struggling with mental health concerns and don’t know where to turn, have been dropped by other providers or even turned away. Sadly yes this does happen.

So please help us by hitting over 10K likes and just imagine how many people we can reach if you all share the page too, mind blowing possibilities.

Thanks for reading and helping us make a huge difference for so many people that need what we do.

Click below and make a difference

Icarus Online Facebook Page

Simon

Hypnosis and Fibromyalgia


This is quite topical at the moment as more and more research is being conducted into the cause and possible treatments for Fibromyalgia, which for many is significantly debilitating and affects every aspect of life.

Fibromyalgia, also called fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), is a long-term condition that causes pain all over the body.

As well as widespread pain, people with fibromyalgia may also have:

  • increased sensitivity to pain
  • fatigue (extreme tiredness)
  • muscle stiffness
  • difficulty sleeping
  • problems with mental processes (known as “fibro-fog”) – such as problems with memory and concentration
  • headaches
  • irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) – a digestive condition that causes stomach pain and bloating

What causes fibromyalgia?

The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but it’s thought to be related to abnormal levels of certain chemicals in the brain and changes in the way the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves) processes pain messages carried around the body.

It’s also suggested that some people are more likely to develop fibromyalgia because of genes inherited from their parents.

In many cases, the condition appears to be triggered by a physically or emotionally stressful event, such as:

  • an injury or infection
  • giving birth
  • having an operation
  • the breakdown of a relationship
  • the death of a loved one

Read more about the causes of fibromyalgia.

Who’s affected?

Anyone can develop fibromyalgia, although it affects around 7 times as many women as men.

The condition typically develops between the ages of 30 and 50, but can occur in people of any age, including children and the elderly.

It’s not clear exactly how many people are affected by fibromyalgia, although research has suggested it could be a relatively common condition.

Some estimates suggest nearly 1 in 20 people may be affected by fibromyalgia to some degree.

One of the main reasons it’s not clear how many people are affected is because fibromyalgia can be a difficult condition to diagnose.

There’s no specific test for the condition, and the symptoms can be similar to a number of other conditions.

How fibromyalgia is treated

Although there’s currently no cure for fibromyalgia, there are treatments to help relieve some of the symptoms and make the condition easier to live with.

Treatment tends to be a combination of:

  • medication – such as antidepressants and painkillers
  • talking therapies – such as hypnosis, CBT and counselling
  • lifestyle changes – such as exercise programmes and relaxation techniques

Exercise in particular has been found to have a number of important benefits for people with fibromyalgia, including helping to reduce pain.

Some mental illnesses such as Post Traumatic Stress, Depression and Anxiety are more prone to individuals developing symptoms of Fibromyalgia and you are happy to share your experiences of how it affects you, what you’ve tried in terms of treatment and what’s worked and hasn’t worked for you and why you think that is. All this may help someone who has been newly diagnosed and is struggling.

Original source:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/fibromyalgia/


Study 1: Hypnosis for Fibromyalgia Management and Related Sleep Problems
Hypnosis for Management of Fibromyalgia
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23153388

Results: Compared to the control, the hypnosis group reported better improvement on Patient Global Impression of Change (PGIC) (p = .001 at M3, p = .01 at M6) and a significant improvement in sleep and Cognitive Strategy Questionnaire (CSQ) dramatisation subscale (both at M6). (The PGIC uses a 7-point Likert scale that varies from 1 “very much improved” to 7 “very much worse” to quantify patient global response to treatment. The PGIC is a standard assessment in clinical trials regarding fibromyalgia.)

Notes: This randomised, controlled trial contrasted the effects of 5 not-standardised sessions of hypnosis over 2 months in 59 women with fibromyalgia who were randomly assigned to treatment (n?=?30) or a wait-list control group (n?=?29). Patients in the treated group were encouraged to practice self-hypnosis. Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ), MOS-Sleep Scale, Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory (MFI), Cognitive Strategy Questionnaire (CSQ), and Patient Global Impression of Change (PGIC) were administered at baseline, 3 months (M3), and 6 months (M6) after inclusion.

Int J Clin Exp Hypn. 2013 Jan;61(1):111-23
By: P. Picard, C. Jusseaume, M. Boutet, C. Dualé, A. Mulliez, B. Aublet-Cuvellier, CHU Clermont-Ferrand, Pain Clinic, France


Study 2: Meta-Analysis/Review of Research on Hypnosis and Fibromyalgia
Efficacy of hypnosis/guided imagery in fibromyalgia syndrome – a systematic review and meta-analysis of controlled trials
http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2474/12/133

Results: Pain was assessed in all studies, sleep in two and fatigue and depressed mood in one study each by visual or numeric scales. Two studies reported that hypnosis was superior to controls in reducing sleep disturbances at final treatment. Two studies reported that hypnosis/guided imagery was superior to controls in reducing pain at follow-up. One study reported that hypnosis was superior to controls in reducing fatigue at final treatment and at follow-up. The researchers conclude that regular home training by audiotapes with hypnotic suggestions and guided imaginations could be useful, but that more study is needed.

Notes: The authors performed a systematic review with meta-analysis of the efficacy of hypnosis/guided imagery for fibromyalgia syndrome. Six controlled trials with 239 subjects were analysed. Four studies were conducted in Europe and one study each in USA and Mexico. Patients were recruited by registers of hospitals, referral (general practitioner, rheumatologist, departments of hospitals) and local self-help groups. Five studies were conducted in hospitals (university, district hospital) and one study in a general practitioner office.

Five studies offered hypnosis: Three studies with direct hypnosis of which one was combined with cognitive-behavioural therapy, two studies with indirect [Ericksonian] hypnosis). One study offered guided imagery. Four studies with hypnosis explicitly mentioned the use of mental images. All but one study used suggestions and/or images which were directly addressed to the pain experience. All studies used pain-related suggestions. The study with guided imagery used suggestions. Hypnosis/guided imagery were delivered in five studies as individual therapy and in one study as group therapy. Hypnosis/guided imagery were offered in five studies by face-to face (life), in one study by audiotapes. Three studies recommended daily training at home with audiotapes. The median number of sessions with a therapist was nine (range 7-12). The median of hypnosis/guided imagery delivered by a therapist was 390 (range 300-1080 min).

BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 2011, 12:133
By: Kathrin Bernardy, Department of Anaesthesiology, Intensive Care and Pain Therapy, Saarland University Hospital, Kirrberger Straße 100, D-66421 Homburg/Saar, Germany), Nicole Füber, Department of Differential Psychology and Psychodiagnostics, Saarland University, Im Stadwald, D-66123 Saarbrücken, Germany), Petra Klose (Department of Internal Medicine V (Integrative Medicine), University of Duisburg-Essen, Kliniken Essen-Mitte, Am Deimelsberg 34a, D-45276 Essen, Germany) and Winfried Häuser, Department of Internal Medicine I, Klinikum Saarbrücken, Winterberg 1, D-66119 Saarbrücken, Germany, Department of Psychosomatic Medicine, Technische Universität München, Ismaninger Straße 22, D-81675 München, Germany


Study 3: Hypnosis to Help Fibromyalgia Issues – Pain, Fatigue, Sleep and Global Assessment
Controlled trial of hypnotherapy in the treatment of refractory fibromyalgia.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2023202

Results: Compared with the patients in the physical therapy group, the patients in the hypnotherapy group showed a significantly better outcome with respect to their pain experience, fatigue on awakening, sleep pattern and global assessment at 12 and 24 weeks. At baseline most patients in both groups had strong feelings of somatic and psychic discomfort as measured by the Hopkins Symptom Checklist. These feelings showed a significant decrease in patients treated by hypnotherapy compared with physical therapy, but they remained abnormally strong in many cases. We conclude hypnotherapy may be useful in relieving symptoms in patients with refractory fibromyalgia.

Notes: In a controlled study, 40 patients with refractory fibromyalgia were randomly allocated to treatment with either hypnotherapy or physical therapy for 12 weeks with followup at 24 weeks.

J Rheumatol. 1991 Jan;18(1):72-5
Haanen HC, Hoenderdos HT, van Romunde LK, Hop WC, Mallee C, Terwiel JP, Hekster GB, (Department of Rheumatology, Sint Antonius Ziekenhuis, Nieuwegein, The Netherlands)


Study 4: Hypnosis When Added to Conventional Medical Treatment for Fibromyalgia
Hypnotic treatment synergizes the psychological treatment of fibromyalgia: a pilot study.
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/51400608_Hypnotic_treatment_synergizes_the_psychological_treatment_of_fibromyalgia_a_pilot_study

Results: The results suggest that psychological treatment produces greater symptom benefits than the conventional medical treatment only, especially when hypnosis is added. The study authors conclude that hypnosis may be a useful tool to help people with fibromyalgia manage their symptomatology.

Notes: This pilot study compared the efficacy for fibromyalgia of multimodal cognitive behavioural treatments, with and without hypnosis, with that of a purely pharmacological approach, with a multiple baseline N = 1 design. Six hospital patients were randomly assigned to the three experimental conditions.

The American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis (impact factor: 0.53). 04/2008; 50(4):311-21
By: Consuelo Martínez-Valero, Antonio Castel, Antonio Capafons, José Sala, Begoña Espejo, Etzel Cardeña, Centro de Aplicaciones Psicológicas, Valencia, Spain


Study 5: Hypnosis to Control Fibromyalgia Pain
Fibromyalgia pain and its modulation by hypnotic and non-hypnotic suggestion: An fMRI analysis
http://www.academia.edu/180565/Fibromyalgia_pain_and_its_modulation_by_hypnotic_and_non-hypnotic_suggestion_An_fMRI_analysis

Results: Patients claimed significantly more control over their pain and reported greater pain reduction when hypnotised. Activation of the midbrain, cerebellum, thalamus, and mid-cingulate, primary and secondary sensory, inferior parietal, insula and prefrontal cortices correlated with reported changes in pain with hypnotic and non-hypnotic suggestion. These activations were of greater magnitude, however, when suggestions followed a hypnotic induction in the cerebellum, anterior mid-cingulate cortex, anterior and posterior insula and the inferior parietal cortex. Our results thus provide evidence for the greater efficacy of suggestion following a hypnotic induction. Pain relief was significantly greater when suggestion followed a hypnotic induction.

Notes: Suggestion following a hypnotic induction can readily modulate the subjective experience of pain. It is unclear whether suggestion without hypnosis is equally effective. To explore these and related questions, suggestions following a hypnotic induction and the same suggestions without a hypnotic induction were used during functional magnetic resonance imaging to increase and decrease the subjective experience of fibromyalgia pain. The patients were informed that hypnotic suggestions would be given to allow the dial to move up and down, producing a concomitant change in their fibromyalgia pain sensation. They were then hypnotised individually using an induction described in detail elsewhere (Whalley and Oakley, 2003). Following the hypnotic induction, patients were asked to bring the dial to mind and to notify the experimenter of its current position. Suggestions were given for the dial and the corresponding fibromyalgia pain sensation to be turned up as high as the patient could allow it to go, dial ratings were then recorded. Suggestions were then given to turn the dial down as low as possible and dial ratings were again recorded.

European Journal of Pain 13 (2009) 542–550
By: Stuart W.G. Derbyshire, Matthew G. Whalley, David A. Oakley, School of Psychology, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK Department of Psychology, Hypnosis Unit, University College London

ICARUS Online


As there has been a lot of work, conversations, research and thought gone into the free helpline that we set up in January, and with our efforts to reform the military charities sector and close the excessively large gaps in the system, I thought an update was in order to let everyone know  what’s going on.

I had a great conversation with Lord Dannatt last month and he is in full agreement with our purpose in setting up the free helpline (which has morphed into a treatment line, more on that shortly) and what we are doing and has kindly given his full support and backing ongoing.

Meanwhile my friend and colleague David Bellamy has been communicating with General Peter Currie, General Andrew Graham, General Sir John McColl, chariman of COBSEO and Colonel David Richmond, chairman of the Contact Group set up by Prince Harry, they too are in agreement that the militray charities sector needs shaking up, tightening up and reforming which is now beginning to happen.

David Bellamy is an extraordinary man with one hell of a life behind him. He was in the British Army and served in Dhofar in the 70’s during the Secret War. He has worked as a commercial diver, worked for Lloyds of London and was instrumental in setting up their first Kidnap and ransom insurance package. David, like myself was trained by Stephen Brooks, the founder of British Hypnosis Research and Training Institute and is the worlds best teacher of Ericksonian Hypnosis and Psychotherapy.

It has lead to a slight adjustment in our plan and the development of a name for this not for profit organisation we have created. So we are now called ICARUS, which stands for Immediate Care, Assessment and Rehabilitaion for Uniformed Services, which means we cover all branches of the military and emergency services because there are many veterans working in the civilian uniformed services that deal with horrendous situations on a regular basis and also may well need our help.

The history behind ICARUS is the ancient Greek story of Icarus and his father Daedalus who told his son not to fly too close to the sun with his homemade wings of feathers and wax as the heat from the sun would melt the wax and he would fall into the sea and drown. So the story is about high flying ambition, which is what we have for the accessibility of the best treatment for all uniformed services and veterans. The psychological element of it, the Icarus Complex, which is about the highs and lows of what used to be called Manic Depression and is now Bipolar Disorder, our aim is to help anyone in the uniformed services with a mental illness to learn to deal with it and live a full, happy and successful life for them.

Screenshot 2018-03-02 15.32.53

We wanted to be a not for profit becasue there are already 350 plus military charities in a system that is unregulated, poorly structured at present, and with no standards required to be fulfilled and is in desperate need of an overhaul. This is by no means meant to undermine the extraordinary and excellent work being done by so many in this sector, purely that it can be tightened up and improved so that people do not fall through the net, are not turned away or dropped because they are unable to commit to systems that are far too rigid for people with mental illness. And yes this does happen because these are precisely the people I have been treating for over ten years now.

The helpline is now a treatment line to fit with our new name and purpose, although we will provide any help we can in the process. We offer virtual treatment via phone, skype or any other form of video call to speed up access to help, as well as face to face treatment where possible. We are currently working on building a national network of therapists to assist us so if you are interested in getting involved or know someone who might be then please get in touch with me on simon@simonmaryan.com 

Access to our services is open to anyone. In principle, no one will be refused. There will be no discrimination on grounds of length of service, reason for discharge, medical condition or disability, age, physical disability, gender, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, political or other opinion. This is a free service open to all service personnel as set out in our constitution which you can find below.

ICARUS Constitution 28.02.18

The phone number stays the same 0800 689 0864

We are also having a website designed that will list all our therapists, each with a personal bio explaining what they do and how they work. All our therapists will be associates, they will be vetted and cleared by us to ensure that they have the appropriate insurance etc for the therapies they provide. The website is being designed by David Bellamy’s wife Mishi who is an amazing artist, so we are extremely fortunate to have this wonderful lady helping us out. Take a look at her fantastic work here: https://www.mishibellamy.net

We also have a gentleman called Stephen Finlayson who is coming on board to help us promote our services, reach more people and deliver what is needed to those that need. Stephen showed his huge heart and compassion a few years ago when he helped a homeless guy in his hometown of Carlisle, this man, Phil,  turned out to be a veteran as well and Stephen helped him find somewhere to stay, put him in touch with the Royal British Legion and thankfully he is back on his feet, has a home, a job and a girflriend. Phil now helps veterans and is paying back in his own way. This story was covered in a documentary by the BBC and is quite emotional viewing.

Thanks to David Bellamy, we have one very interested coroporate sponsor who is keen to help us deliver our services and we are obviously looking for more to make sure that this not for profit can provide as much assisstance to those serving and veterans struggling with any form of mental illness, to live their lives to their fullest and be happy, functional and succeed. Another part of what we provide is ongoing coaching and mentoring for those that receive treatment from us for as long as they need, and also training those that are interested in becoming a qualified therapist, coach and mentor so that they are then capable of helping others that are in the same situation they used to be in.

If you are interested in helping us with sponsorship, donations or have any suggestions about people, organisations to speak to then please get in touch either through the phone number 0800 689 0864 or by email simon@simonmaryan.com

We are also approaching a few universities with the aim of having our program of treatment as a whole, independently monitored and assessed in order to garner external verification that what we do works. We know it does yet it is hugely beneficial to have that independant review and reassuring for those we help.

So lots has been done, lots is happening and lots still to do. Keep your eyes peeled for more updates as we make more and more progress.

Please like, share and comment with your thoughts and any ideas you have for us.

Thanks

Simon

 

The Importance of Accurate Diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress.


As a specialist in trauma and Post Traumatic Stress, I read and research constantly for new information and treatment options in order to provide the best possible options for each person I have the fortune of working with.
 
The difficulty can be is that most individuals with PTSD suffer from other mental disorders as well. Studies of the prevalence of PTSD in large samples have found the following mental disorders are most likely to be co-morbid with PTSD:
 
  • Major Depression
  • Substance Use Disorders
  • Dysthymia – persistent mild depression
  • Agoraphobia
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Disorder
  • Somatisation Disorder – extreme anxiety about physical symptoms such as pain or fatigue
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Adjustment Disorder
  • Phobias
 
It can be challenging to determine whether overlapping symptoms are best conceptualised as being a part of the PTSD constellation of symptoms or whether they should be attributed to another disorder. Differential diagnosis can be especially difficult when disorders other than PTSD are preceded by exposure to traumatic stress.
 
Despite some symptom overlap between PTSD and other disorders, PTSD has a number of unique features that distinguish it from other disorders. DSM-5 provides specific differential diagnosis guidelines in order to help clinicians assign the most appropriate diagnoses. I know there is much controversy over the DSM, however it is useful to have some form of benchmark to work from.
 
The following elements are useful in distinguishing symptoms of PTSD from symptoms of other disorders:
 
  • PTSD symptoms start or get worse after exposure to a traumatic event.
  • Stimuli reminiscent of traumatic events that activate PTSD symptoms are often pervasive and wide ranging, as opposed to singular or highly specific as in the case of phobias.
 
Disorders other than PTSD may be caused, in part, by exposure to traumatic stress. Although stressor exposure is part of the PTSD diagnostic criteria, PTSD is by no means the only mental disorder that may develop in the wake of trauma exposure. Examples of disorders that may develop after or be exacerbated by trauma exposure include adjustment disorder and phobias. Other highly prevalent disorders, such as depression and panic disorder, may also be potentiated by a traumatic stressor.
 
It is important to look at the guidelines for making a differential diagnosis of PTSD versus other conditions that are commonly associated with traumatic stress exposure. PTSD can be distinguished from these disorders by its defining symptom criteria (i.e., to meet criteria for PTSD, individuals must demonstrate a symptom profile that is consistent with the guidelines for PTSD). Additionally, exposure to traumatic stress is a requirement for a diagnosis of PTSD; in contrast, for disorders such as depression, panic disorder and phobias, although symptoms may be associated with a traumatic event, this is not a requirement.
 
This is why it is important to gather information from varying sources using a variety of methods in order to ensure an accurate diagnosis which will enable the best possible treatment for all symptoms for each individual.