Professional and Confidential Hypnotherapy Treatment
Welcome to our site we assume you have an interest in how hypnotherapy can help you achieve what you desire whether that be eliminating anxiety, relieving depression or one of the many treatment options listed below.
- Social Anxiety
- Anger Management
- Nail Biting
Despite the mystery that popular culture and fiction cultivates around the concept of hypnosis, the reality is actually a bit mundane. The hypnotic mental state is one of the many states of consciousness that your brain is capable of. The simplest description of being hypnotised is being in a deep state of relaxation, with a clear and focused mind free from distraction.
“Spacing out” and losing track of time is one example of hypnosis that we’ve all experienced at one time or another. Daydreaming too is comparable to the hypnotic state of mind. Being asleep or unconscious is not a form of hypnosis. In fact, during hypnosis your mind is more aware and focused than usual. Hypnotherapy is the art of inducing this hypnotic state for therapeutic purposes, providing effective treatment for a surprisingly wide range of issues.
Although the term “hypnosis” is a relatively modern invention, the practice of hypnosis has a long history in human culture. From Egyptian “sleep temples” to biblical allusions to hypnosis. Various cultures have shamanic traditions that center around achieving trance-like states similar to modern hypnosis, although of course the actual methodology could vary immensely.
Modern hypnosis began as mesmerism, the result of the work by a young physician Franz Mesmer in the 1700s. Mesmer was important since he was essentially the first person to harness the imaginative power of human beings for therapeutic reasons.
The field of Psychology didn’t become a formal field until about 1870 but modern hypnotherapy, the successor to mesmerism, has found a home in its vast arsenal of therapeutic approaches. To this day hypnotherapy helps countless people deal with behavioural and psychological problems.
Generally a qualified hypnotherapist will be a clinical psychologist or otherwise qualified mental health professional that also has training and expertise in hypnotherapeutic methods. Since modern hypnotherapy is practiced as a form of psychotherapy, being qualified in psychology is a rather important pre-requisite. Remember that hypnotherapy is the marriage of hypnosis and psychotherapy, having the ability to facilitate a hypnotic state is only half the battle. A hypnotherapist must also have a deep understanding of the diagnosis and intervention strategies for particular problems.
In Australia there is no official legal protection of the title “hypnotherapist”, so anyone may call themselves that. While there are ongoing calls for a professional accreditation body, there are several independent hypnotherapy organisations that provide accreditation for individual therapists. So, when choosing a hypnotherapist, make sure that they have the right educational qualifications and preferably a recommendation from a hypnotherapy body, whose criteria should be readily available.
Hypnosis itself is only a part of hypnotherapy, but after a treatment plan has been developed hypnosis will be induced as, an when, that plan dictates. The clinical hypnotherapist uses hypnotic techniques to facilitate the client’s transition from a normal state of consciousness to one of deep relaxation on a physical, mental and emotional level.
During hypnosis the conscious part of the mind takes a back seat, allowing the subconscious or “unconscious” to come to the fore. This allows the hypnotherapist to make positive changes to the habits, thought patterns or after effects of life effects that are causing some sort of distress in the client’s life.
The key characteristic of hypnosis as reported by those that have undergone it is a sense of deep and overwhelming relaxation. People have likened it to many other common life events such as being lost in thought, being in a state of carefree bliss or the moments just before sleeping or after waking. Physically it is characterised by a lack of tension in the muscles, a slower heart rate and slower breathing.
Hypnosis also varies in the depth of the trance that can be achieved. Achieving deep hypnosis and the full, powerful imagination and introspection benefits it can provide is a product of time and relationship building with you hypnotherapist. Since hypnosis is a voluntary process you need to trust your therapist enough to allow such a fundamental surrender.
In principle the answer appears to be that most people can be put into a hypnotic state. Prof. David Spiegel of the Stanford Medical School has estimated that about 25% of subjects in their research could not be hypnotised. This did not appear to be linked to any personality traits, but to lower activity in areas of the brain associated with executive control. New research suggests that how hypnotizable someone is may be partly genetic.9
Hypnosis is always self-hypnosis, so it depends on the client’s desire and willingness to be put into a trance and a good deal of imagination. The therapist acts as a guide, informing you of what needs to be done physically and mentally each step of the way. So even if you are easily hypnotisable, it still depends on whether you really want to cooperate or not.
Will l lose control or be asked to do something against my will?
A therapist’s code of ethics puts respect for a client’s wishes and autonomy at the centre of any treatment or therapy plan. So if there is something that you do not wish to do you would not be compelled to do so in the first place. In any event, even a person under deep hypnosis cannot be compelled to do anything against their will. Despite what you may have seen on stage or on television, hypnosis remains a completely voluntary process that depends on your own strength of will to work. So in short, you would not be asked to do something that you didn’t want to nor could you be compelled to.
Will my personality be changed?
Personality isn’t immutable, it’s the product of many inter-related aspects of your mind and brain that combine to produce relatively stable behavioural traits. Gradual change to personality is a perfectly normal part of human development. Sudden changes to personality are usually a sign that something serious has gone wrong somewhere. In either case, hypnosis won’t cause drastic changes to your personality, rather the positive aspects of your self that could help in dealing with your specific issue are allowed to come to the fore as a more prominent aspect in your personality makeup. The hypnotherapist can only work with what is already within you, although you may be surprised at the abilities and strengths that are locked away in your subconscious mind.
Hypnotherapy has helped countless people in a wide variety of areas. There are far too many to mention here, but in essence any condition arising partly or entirely from a mental source. Problems of habit or behaviour such as overeating, smoking or nail biting are common candidates for hypnotherapy. Psychosomatic conditions such as psychosomatic pain are amenable to hypnotherapy as well as chronic pain with a physical origin. Hypnotherapy has, for example, enjoyed some success in helping cancer patients deal with pain and the side effects of their treatments.
Hypnotherapy is also useful for dealing with negative emotions such as guilt, anxiety and the effects of trauma. It can also be used to improve certain aspects of the self such as memory, recall and self-confidence. Just bear in mind that hypnotherapy is not a panacea and is used as part of a multimodal treatment plan that can involve other forms of psychotherapy and regular medical treatment.
Myths, popular culture and film have created the idea that hypnosis can cause all kinds of mischief. The truth is that hypnosis is a perfectly normal and natural mental state. Hypnotherapy doesn’t involve taking a substance and cannot go beyond what you allow it to.
There are no documented cases of death or injury that have followed as a direct result of hypnotherapy. It is important to have a doctor or psychiatrist eliminate any possible non-psychological causes of your problem.An important precaution to take is making sure that you hypnotherapist is properly trained and credentialed.
There are a number of critical periods during the hypnosis process that require a skilled and experienced hypnotherapist that will ensure the benefit to you is maximised any negative emotions or reactions to explorations through hypnosis are managed appropriately.