What is hypnotherapy?
Hypnosis -- or hypnotherapy -- uses guided relaxation, intense concentration, and focused attention to achieve a heightened state of awareness that is sometimes called a trance.
The person's attention is so focused while in this state that anything going on around the person is temporarily blocked out or ignored. In this naturally occurring state, a person may focus his or her attention on specific thoughts or tasks.
This change in consciousness can often lead patients to experience things differently outside of hypnosis, such as criticism at work or home, stage fright, or even pain.
How can it help me?
Being under hypnosis is said to allow a person to be more open to both suggestion and discussion when the patient trusts the hypnotherapist. Hypnotherapy has been used to treat a wide range of conditions or unwanted behavior, such as:
- Sleep disorder
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Grief and loss of loved ones
- Smoking cessation
- Weight loss
Those who have psychotic symptoms, such as delusions or hallucinations, should speak to a qualified hypnotherapist to determine whether or not this therapy is right for them.
Using with caution
Hypnosis might not be appropriate for a person who has psychotic symptoms, such as hallucinations and delusions, or for someone who is using drugs or alcohol.
It should be used for pain control only after a doctor has evaluated the person for any physical disorder that might require medical or surgical treatment. Hypnosis also may be a less effective form of therapy than other more traditional treatments, such as medication, for psychiatric disorders.