A CLINICIAN'S HEALING THROUGH SGB THERAPY
This is my testimony about the Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB). Please note that I am not saying its a miracle cure or a quick fix for PTS. I am only sharing my experience in case it will help others and continue to reduce the stigma.
I am a clinician who treats Veterans and First Responders and have several clients who have received the SGB for relief from PTS symptoms and sensitized nervous systems and several more I have personally referred to Dr. Eubanks at the PainCare clinic, who also recently did my SGB. Because of the severity of the PTSD my clients battle, I of course minimized my own nervous system sensitization until I finally decided to take my own advice of not suffering or just powering through. I requested a consult to increase my understanding of the block and meet the Dr my clients see, and admittedly ask for help for myself. I am a week out, and what I have experienced is significant:
*During my 20 min observation time post injection I had this vision of myself walking backwards away from some particularly overwhelming and disturbing memories/experiences, it was as if I was truly leaving them in the past. I have been able to look at them without wanting to puke or avoid. The past doesn't feel so present.
*A decrease in neck pain from the tension I was carrying. It's not so tight, painful to the touch, and haven't noticed the jolts of discomfort in my neck
*Alcohol does not have the same appeal. I will admit I found myself craving a glass of wine most days, now I am more sensitive to it and don't "need" it to quiet down like I did before.
*I don't get physically triggered when I hear about stories or images that match my own disturbing memories.
*I have not had any graphic nightmares, nor have I woken up with my heart racing in a perceived state of fear/panic.
*I have learned that I was so habituated to thoughts of fear and anxiety that I still have them but then realize my body doesn't feel that way, so it gives me a chance to truly change and modify my thoughts and behaviors.
*Because the past does not feel so present, it has helped me to deal with present stressors and realize where I need to make changes rather than being confused about whether it was the past or present causing me difficulties.
**Again, I am not "cured," (nor is that a realistic expectation, we are all changed by our experiences) but the SGB has helped me to do more healing work. It helps me to feel more in control of my life and system, it's like it calms the internal storm enough to actually clean up the debris and increase resilience. The work still has to be done.
I am so profoundly grateful to Lauren with Hippie and a Veteran for first introducing me to the SGB a few years ago, it has been life changing for so many of my clients and now I am able to experience its benefits as well.
- Rachel Willoughby Greene