In this state, clients can turn their attention completely inward to find and utilize the natural resources deep within themselves that can help them make changes or regain control in certain areas of their life.
Hypnotherapy softens critical thinking, so that unconscious behavior bubbles up to conscious realization where life-enriching habits and thoughts are strengthened and life-diminishing habits and thoughts are amended or erased.
How It Works
Hypnosis is a tool or procedure that helps facilitate various types of therapies and medical or psychological treatments. Only professionals certified in clinical hypnosis can decide, with their patient, if hypnosis should be used along with other treatments. As with psychotherapy, the length of hypnosis treatment varies, depending on the complexity of the problem
When It's Used
Hypnosis is usually considered an adjunct to psychotherapy (counseling or therapy), because the hypnotic state allows people to explore painful thoughts, feelings, and memories they might have hidden from their conscious minds. In addition, hypnosis enables people to perceive some things differently, such as blocking an awareness of pain.
It can also be used by dentists to help patients control their fears or to treat teeth grinding and other oral conditions.
What to Expect
Although there are different techniques, clinical hypnotherapy is generally performed in a calm, therapeutic environment. The therapist will guide you into a relaxed, focused state and ask you to think about experiences and situations in positive ways that can help you change the way you think and behave. Unlike some dramatic portrayals of hypnosis in movies, books, or on stage, you will not be unconscious, asleep, or in any way out of control of yourself. You will hear the therapist’s suggestions.
Hypnosis has been studied for other conditions, including:
Pain control. Hypnosis may help with pain due to burns, cancer, childbirth, irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, temporomandibular joint problems (TMJ), dental procedures and headaches.
Hot flashes. Hypnosis may relieve symptoms of hot flashes associated with menopause.
Behavior change. Hypnosis has been used with some success in the treatment of insomnia, bed-wetting,
smoking, and overeating.
Cancer treatment side effects. Hypnosis has been used to ease side effects related to chemotherapy or radiation treatment.
Mental health conditions. Hypnosis may help treat symptoms of anxiety, phobias and post-traumatic stress.
Hypnosis conducted by a trained professional is considered:
ALTERNATIVE MEDICAL TREATMENT
Hypnosis may not be appropriate in people with severe mental illness.
How to prepare
You don't need any special preparation to undergo hypnosis. But it's a good idea to wear comfortable clothing to help you relax. Also, make sure that you're well-rested so that you're not inclined to fall asleep during the session.
What you can expect
I will will explain the process of hypnosis and review your treatment goals. Then the therapist will typically talk in a gentle, soothing tone and describe images that create a sense of relaxation, security and well-being.
When you're in a receptive state, the therapist will suggest ways for you to achieve your goals, such as reducing pain or eliminating cravings to smoke.
I may also help you visualize vivid, meaningful mental images of yourself accomplishing your goals.
When the session is over I will help you end your state of relaxation.
Contrary to how hypnosis is sometimes portrayed in movies or on television, you don't lose control over your behavior while under hypnosis. Also, you generally remain aware of and remember what happens during hypnosis.
You eventually practice self-hypnosis, in which you induce a state of hypnosis in yourself. You can use this skill as needed.
What to Look for in a Hypnotherapist
Look for a hypnotherapist who is a member of the International Board of Hypnotherapy. Of course, in addition to looking at qualifications, you should also find a hypnotherapist with whom you feel confident and comfortable in a therapeutic relationship.
Learn about any therapist you're considering. Start by asking questions:
Do you have training in a field such as psychology?
Are you licensed in your specialty in this state?
Where did you go to school, and where did you do your postgraduate training?
How much training have you had in hypnotherapy and from what schools?
What professional organizations do you belong to?
How long have you been in practice?
What are your fees, and does insurance cover your services?
While hypnosis can be effective in helping people cope with pain, stress and anxiety. Hypnosis may also be used as part of a comprehensive program for quitting smoking or losing weight.