As a hypnotherapist, I regularly come across clients who want to know whether hypnotherapy can help them cure an addiction, treat a phobia, relieve pain or soothe an anxiety. One of the most common questions clients ask is whether hypnosis can replace drugs to treat a health condition.
The first task of a hypnotherapist is to explain to the client what hypnosis is and what it isn’t. Unfortunately, the reputation of hypnosis has taken a beating from movie scripts and staged shows. The general perception of hypnosis is that it turns people into clucking chickens or soaring eagles.
Thankfully, science is beginning to debunk the myth by presenting facts that show hypnosis is a serious alternative to treating a variety of ailments and conditions. If you are investigating hypnosis as an alternative or complementary treatment, the following FAQ on hypnosis and drugs will help you understand this treatment better.
What is Hypnosis?
Also known as hypnotherapy, hypnosis induces a trance-like state of deep relaxation in order to treat psychological or emotional disorders.
Hypnosis employs techniques to bypass the conscious thinking mind to make powerful positive suggestions to the unconscious mind. A session usually involves the client experiencing a sense of deep relaxation, allowing the mind to focus on the positive reinforcements, adaptations or lifestyle changes suggested by the therapist.
Hypnosis is, therefore, not a state of deep sleep but rather a state of deep concentration and focus. Hypnotherapists use the power of hypnotic suggestions to change triggers in the brain, stop self-sabotaging issues, extinguish trauma and redirect neural networks.
Hypnosis and Drugs
There is a place for both conventional medication and alternative hypnosis to treat health conditions. The difference between the two is that one can lead to dependency, while the other is empowering. Taking drugs to treat a condition over a period of time can lead to over-dependence on the drug.
Hypnosis, on the other hand, is a safe and drug-free alternative that has been used as a standalone treatment. This does not mean that every patient on prescribed medication should throw away their drugs and start hypnotherapy. If you have been prescribed ongoing medication as part of your treatment, you should always consult your doctor first before embarking on any alternative treatment.
A better option is to use hypnosis to complement conventional medical treatments. Drugs treat symptoms while hypnosis treats root causes. A good illustration of this is treating aviophobia or fear of flying. Pills can be used to control anxiety related to flying but hypnosis can reach into the inner recesses of the unconscious to identify the reasons for this fear and to remove them.
What can Hypnosis Treat?
A recent news report confirmed that hypnosis has been used to treat a host of health conditions. According to the report, hypnosis has proven to be far more successful in alleviating conditions associated with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) where drugs and other forms of therapies have failed.
Hypnosis is also excellent for pain management associated with cancer pain, back pain, arthritis, and other chronic pain conditions. Relaxation techniques and the influence of hypnotic suggestions associated with hypnosis can also be used to manage childbirth, stop smoking, lose weight, and treat depression and anxiety.
Hypnosis is now widely accepted as a reliable treatment for a range of psychological and emotional conditions. It is safe with long-lasting results and can be used as a standalone treatment or to complement conventional medical treatment.