What is hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy, among other things, refers to an evidence-based addiction treatment. This therapy is also useful in the treatment of different other kinds of psychological issues.
Hypnotherapy is a combination of hypnosis’ psychological process and psychotherapy. The therapy is typically done by a trained person, usually a certified psychologist, with an informed client who has a detailed understanding and gives consent to the hypnotherapy process.
Hypnosis has to do with a deliberate inducement of a situation known as the trance state, i.e. an alteration of a person’s consciousness. The inducement is done by the hypnotherapist or the hypnotist on another person or a group of persons referred to as the hypnotic subject(s). The altered consciousness in this instance transcends only a feeling. The effect and feeling can be observed and measured via the EEG readings of the subjects’ brains.
There is also a practice known as self-hypnosis, and as the name implies it is a personal inducement of hypnosis. Experts have even explained that every hypnosis is a variant of self-hypnosis. However, the core distinction between self-hypnosis and hypnosis is that there is a need to have a concrete understating of the manner of inducing hypnosis in his/herself for self-hypnosis. For hypnosis, the subject can still benefit from the hypnotic process even in the absence of foreknowledge.
Aspects of Hypnosis
A subject in a state of trance gradually loses awareness of surrounding situations and has a deep focus on a particular aspect of his or her inner experience. The inner experiences include their feelings, thoughts, imagination, sensations, and memories. The fundamental aspects of the state of trance can be divided into three parts, namely:
1. Absorption Aspect
2. Dissociation Aspect
3. Suggestibility Aspect
The absorption aspect involves a considerable depth level of mental focus. The hypnotic subject at this stage becomes very absorbed and also mentally involved in their perception, imagination or thought at the moment. The subject at this stage intently concentrates on their inner perception, thought and imagination just like a person watching a movie.
The next aspect is the dissociation aspect. This means that the hypnotic subject differentiates the hypnotic experience that stands as their focus from any other possible distractions that they would normally know about, to a very unusual degree.
Hypnotherapy and Treating Addiction
While in the state of trance, the hypnotic subject is usually more receptive to the suggestions given by the hypnotherapist or hypnotist than they ordinarily would be if they were fully alert. The hypnotic subject typically becomes more passive as well as compliant. It becomes some form of role-playing conducted by the hypnotherapist or hypnotist. Under this state, people tend to become increasingly imaginative, receptive to fantasy and some are able to recollect memories that are long forgotten.
The state of trance is generally a relaxed one. It is also a suggestible one and that combination can aid of a lot of people in accessing a different perspective about their addictive behavioral pattern. In essence, what would typically appear impossible may appear desirable and achievable in this state. Studies show that those who go through hypnotherapy sometimes feel like they have power over themselves and have the ability to break free from their addictive behavioral pattern that hitherto seemed rigid and inflexible.
However, there are a lot of myths concerning hypnotherapy and hypnosis which bothers on the safety or otherwise of hypnosis. Engaging in hypnotherapy with a qualified hypnotherapist is safe, but starting the experience when one is worried about safety isn’t an ideal mindset that can contribute to relaxation. Relaxation remains a central concept that helps in the realization of the goal of this approach. As such, if you are worried, suspicious or anxious about hypnotherapy, hypnosis or even the hypnotherapist, then you might not get a lot of benefits from this approach.
There are cases when some people become more capable mentally or physically when they are in the state of trance. For some others, their behaviors and feelings get influenced when they are out of this state of hypnotic trance. As such, this ranks as the major reason why hypnotherapy or hypnosis appears appealing to people who have addictions because it can help them in conquering addictive cravings and urges
However, hypnosis isn’t magic and it isn’t going to take away all feelings of addiction in one session. Also, while hypnosis can truly help in the treatment of addiction and other related problems, it is important to remember that these behavioral patterns are quite complex for the subject as well as the therapist.