Clinical Hypnotherapy

"It always comes back to the same necessity: go deep enough and there is bedrock of truth." ~Elizabeth Sarton

Background

"How strange it is that the nature of life is change, yet the nature of human beings is to resist change." ~Elizabeth Lesser

Hypnosis is really about engaging the conscious mind (which holds that which we are aware of such as thoughts, decisions and judgments), and motivating the unconscious mind (which holds memories, feelings and thoughts we aren't aware of) in order to accomplish the goals we desire. It's about bringing the mind into alignment by getting to the heart of the story--a conditioned story that in the end may not speak your truth at all. As we de-construct the conditioning, and begin see distortions in the story, symptoms and assumptions begin to fall away.

Hypnosis is a safe and effective therapeutic tool when the client and the hypnotherapist have mutually agreed upon its use beforehand Hypnosis is currently used in outpatient, inpatient, and client/therapist settings. In 1958 the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association recognized hypnotherapy as a valid procedure. Since`1995 the National Institutes of Health has recommended hypnotherapy as a treatment for chronic pain. To date, a significant number clinical research studies have highlighted the effectiveness of hypnotherapy for a wide variety of physical, emotional and psychological concerns. Many major medical centers confidently use hypnosis and hypnotherapy in the treatment of their patients. I utilize Ericksonian Hypnosis within the hypnotherapy approach, which means, based on the goals you have said you want to accomplish, I will use metaphors, make suggestions, and offer ideas to your unconscious mind. This interferes with the conscious mind’s resistance to change that has stood in your way of reaching your goals. You are always in control.

Clinical hypnotherapy refers to counseling therapy that uses hypnosis as part of the therapeutic treatment approach. In hypnotherapy, the inter-connection between the mind and the body is tapped into to amplify the benefits of counseling and therapeutic processes, and enhance the ability of an individual to utilize inner strengths, support change, and improve well-being. I offer a full range of hypnotherapy and hypnosis services that have been shown to be effective in a wide variety of settings including lifestyle change; improved surgical and procedure outcomes; pain management; and management of chronic stress. Hypnotherapy may be offered as a primary therapeutic modality or may be integrated with traditional styles of counseling therapy approaches. Please call (636) 724 – 1731 if you would like to find out more about Hypnotherapy.

When might Hypnotherapy be beneficial?

Hypnotherapy and various forms of meditation and guided imagery can enhance in-session work, and promote an improved quality of life and well-being long after therapy has ended. Hypnotherapy helps a person deal with the cause rather than just treating the symptoms. Research and experience support the use of hypnosis and hypnotherapy in a wide variety of settings. including the following.

  • Accomplishing and maintaining healthy lifestyle changes
  • Pain management (generalized; site-specific; chronic)
  • Managing chronic stress
  • Restoring disordered sleep patterns
  • Managing symptoms of chronic disease, serious illness
  • Diminishing side-effects of treatment and procedures
  • Improving surgery, and treatment outcomes
  • Coping with anxiety
  • Self-esteem building

How does a Hypnotherapy session work?

Just as in counseling and psychotherapy, I will listen to your story, and understand your situation and your goals from your perspective. I utilize Ericksonian Hypnosis, which means, based on the goals you have said you want to accomplish, I will use metaphors, make suggestions and offer ideas to your unconscious mind. This interferes with your conscious mind’s resistance to change—the resistance that has stood in your way of reaching your goals. You are in control at all times. Using words and relaxation techniques I will help you achieve a state of deep relaxation.

There are several levels of consciousness. We will work at the level--or trance state--that lies between a very alert state and sleep (which is not a trance state). Although you may feel like you are falling asleep, brain activity in trance states is different from the activity associated with sleep. Unlike meditation or guided imagery, hypnosis is driven by suggestions related to specific "work to be done". In hypnosis you will become more focused and have an increased awareness of your internal framework and the inner environment. You will be gently guided as you exchange negative patterns and limiting thoughts for ones that are supportive and useful for the goals you want to accomplish. You can take this opportunity to persuade your unconscious mind to let go of old habits and accept healthier ways.

Memory of what happens during hypnosis varies from person to person. Some people remember almost everything, and others remember only parts of their experience. You will always be aware of the process, and you will always be in control of yourself. I am there as a guide to help you remain focused and centered during the process. You're in charge of the change you want to effect.

In the end, all hypnosis is self-hypnosis, with the hypnotherapist's role being to teach you to use your own mental processes to make and maintain the changes you want. In fact, I will teach you the basics of self-hypnosis and provide you with the training you need to use self-hypnosis at home so you can reinforce what you learn during the session.

Are there situations where Hypnotherapy would not generally be a useful approach?
I always consider that there a number of therapeutic interventions that can achieve benefits, albeit in different ways. For most people hypnotherapy is a gentle, pleasant and highly beneficial experience. Hypnosis may not be useful in situations where a person is experiencing psychotic symptoms, is using drugs or alcohol, or has psychological side effects from treatment protocols. After a thorough history and a discussion of your current circumstances, together we will be able to decide if hypnotherapy will be the most useful approach for your situation.

"At the deepest level, the creative process and the healing process arise from a single source." ~Rachael Naomi Remen, M.D.