When you know that hypnosis works, you may start wondering how it works. As several hypnotists and hypnotherapists out there say about hypnosis, “There is no ‘it.'” What does that mean? That simply means hypnosis is a natural state of mind people experience everyday several times a day. This state of mind is common. You experience it when you daydream or watch a movie. Then you’re left to wonder how does hypnosis work.In Your Mind: What’s Going On Here?
There are two viewpoints based on the works of Dave Elman and Milton Erickson. Followers of Milton Erickson believe that hypnosis is a process of communication with the “unconscious” mind. The suggestions which the client hears or sees get internalized within the unconscious mind which finds meanings from the past or present experiences and are acted upon unconsciously. Dave Elman taught about the “subconscious” mind as a part of the mind where suggestions work along with beliefs based on past experiences. Both describe what you could call models of learning that bypasses the conscious mind. Both models are useful for creating the change you want.
Is Relaxation Hypnosis Effective? Yes, hypnotherapy does help with increasing relaxation.Several scientific studies have investigated relaxation hypnosis, and have found it to be effective.In summary, the British Medical Journal’s article “Does Hypnosis Work for Relaxation?” states that there is good evidence that hypnosis can help promote relaxation and reduce anxiety.Can Hypnotherapy be Used to Treat Depression? Maybe, but more research is needed.In a 1998 study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry to research the effectiveness of complementary therapies for depression, researchers found no conclusive evidence that hypnotherapy helps with depression. Those researchers did note that there was limited evidence that relaxation therapies (which include hypnosis) can help with depression, but more research is needed for conclusive results.
Does Hypnosis Work for Anxiety? Yes, hypnotherapy significantly reduces anxiety and can reduce the need for anxiety-related medications.Several studies have addressed the treatment of anxiety with hypnosis.A 1978 study “Self-hypnosis training in anxiety reduction” by Davidson, Farnbach and Richardson found that patients given self-hypnosis tapes were able to reduce their anxiety levels significantly. So, yes, this study concluded that self-hypnosis using a hypnosis tape is an effective method for anxiety reduction.
How Can Hypnosis Benefit Cancer Patients? Hypnotherapy helps with pain management and with reducing chemotherapy side effects.There have been many studies designed to address the use of hypnosis with cancer patients. Most of these studies have addressed pain management and reducing the adverse side effects of chemotherapy. The evidence is overwhelmingly positive.Does Hypnosis Work for Pain Management? Yes, hypnotherapy can significantly reduce pain.A review of 18 studies that investigated hypnotherapy for pain management found that it is effective in reducing pain. The review was published in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis in 2000 and concluded by recommending broader application of hypnosis for pain management.
Powerful Emotions.Naturally we all want to minimize harm and maximize health and vitality. Let’s consider our emotions. Our emotions have both a biological and psychological basis. We can change our emotions by changing what we think about. Our emotions change as our bodies change during adolescence. Clearly our minds and bodies are part of the same system and what affects one inevitably affects the other. Any separation is artificial. So worry, fear, certain harmful automatic thoughts and habits will affect your health negatively. Also happiness, mental flexibility and variety along with helpful automatic thoughts and habits will improve your health.
Hypnosis does not work on everyone in the world. One type of person that hypnosis will be ineffective is for people with an I.Q. that is below 70. If you are not that intelligent then here’s one reason that can make you happy. If someone tries to manipulate you using hypnosis then they will be unsuccessful. Hypnosis works better with people in the 100 plus I.Q. range. Since hypnosis involves a lot of imagination and creativity, people that have low I.Q. will simply find it hard to keep pace.
A second type of person where hypnosis won’t work is on people with concentration difficulties. These are the A.D.D. type of personalities. Those with attention deficit disorders or hyperactivity disorders will find it difficult or even impossible to be hypnotized. The ability to concentrate is crucial for hypnosis so if the candidate has difficulty concentrating then say goodbye already. You are hitting a brick wall if you try to hypnotize someone with concentration disorders.A third type of person where hypnosis will be ineffective is with the skeptics. This can be anyone in the world. A skeptic is one who refuses to believe in the power of hypnosis. This means that this person will continue to shun the fact that hypnosis works while he or she is being hypnotized. Hypnosis involves concentration and it also involves immersing oneself into a trance state. Without the full participation of an individual, hypnosis will be impossible. Since skeptics do not believe in the power of hypnosis from the very beginning then trying to hypnotize them will simply be a waste of time.
Hypnosis has actually been studied in great detail for at least 300 years. One of the major things people have tried to use hypnosis for is pain management. In a randomized trial on hypnosis to control the side effects on breast surgery patients(2007 Sep 5;99(17):1304-12) not only did “patients in the hypnosis group [require] less [pain medication]” but also “cost the institution $772.71 less per patient than those in the control group… mainly due to reduced surgical time.”A study on the brain state of those under hypnosis(2002 Aug 15;14 (6):887-901) showed that hypnosis does effect the areas of the brain that regulate consciousness. This contributes to the idea that being under a hypnotic trance is a separate state the brain can be in.