How Hypnotherapy can help when Counselling or CBT fails to work:
How Hypnotherapy can help when Counselling or CBT fails to work:
When Counselling or CBT haven’t helped you – it is likely that the type of Hypnotherapy that I use will help:
How Hypnotherapy can help when Counselling or CBT fails to work:
When Counselling or CBT haven’t helped you – it is likely that the type of Hypnotherapy that I use will help:
It can seem daunting choosing a hypnotherapist when you know nothing about hypnotherapy. It can seem expensive and how do you know it will work?
Here are five ways to choose your hypnotherapist:
The best way to know this is to take the free consultation that most hypnotherapists offer:
Do they appear to understand your issue and does what they propose seem viable?
Are they talking about a solution tailored for your specific needs or do you get the impression they will offer some generic approach?
Asking their “success rate” won’t really help. No hypnotherapist in business long term should have a low success rate! The bulk of our business comes from referrals from satisfied clients.
This session was not with me – personally I charge £180 for three sessions to ensure that we don’t just put you off.
I work with people to find out why they suck 4000 poisons into their body and help them find strategies to stop.
If the approach is tailored to your perceived needs around smoking then you will stop.
The main reason why hypnotherapy fails with smoking cessation is that the client isn’t really ready to stop!
So you need to be motivated beyond your partner/doctor is asking you to stop.
The reason the enquirer had failed to stop was because she was genuinely not ready to stop. The second reason was that she had had a single session.
80% WILL quit in the first session or dramatically reduce their smoking.
If that session misses the reasons why they smoke then if that trigger happens again it is likely they will weaken and smoke.
You need strategies to tackle those triggers.
This is why a course works better – even if you stop straight away.
If you are highly motivated to tackle ANY issue then an experienced hypnotherapist will craft a hypnotherapy session that will either work for you or narrow the focus to find the real reasons for the issue.
The reasons for a session failing are generally:
Personally speaking I won’t know until I talk to a person face to face, by phone or Skype. There is no one size fits all. Each client requires a different approach.
Take weight loss for instance:
We have known since 1917 that diets don’t work long term because nobody wants to be on a diet forever and the moment they go back to their old way if eating is the moment the weight loss fails.
I need to understand why the person overeats?
We need to tackle the drivers which may include:
This is a small selection and combinations of the above plus other factors.
We can only find out by working together and also discovering the sources, in some cases, that established the habitual eating.
A business consultant once told me that with my experience I should immediately double my fee. I had worked in Harley street where a chunk of the fee went to cover rent, parking, and travel!
This meant that I often ended working with people who could afford these fees, which excluded many people, or people paying fees they couldn’t afford.
My fees I believe are fair and are in the middle of the market. There are far less experienced people who charge much more than I do!
It is also odd that people will consider £60 (for instance) as expensive when they will spend that much at a hairdressers for something that will make them feel better but won’t last instead of to a hypnotherapist who may change their life ..
People will also spend a lot a gym for their physical health while not being prepared to spend on their mental health.
It’s a fact that 1 in 3 of us will need help with mental health issues.
Yet many will soldier on when there is a remedy available.
Your time with your hypnotherapist is not the only time spent working in your issue. Personally I will spend an hour or more preparing your session based on our long initial conversation.
I will record your treatment live and then edit and clean it up before sending it to you.
You then have your treatment forever and can always come back to it at any time you feel that you are ‘slipping.’
Cost factors in the time you don’t see as well as the time spent face to face.
Again personally speaking a session can last from 1 to 2 hours depending on the time required. As well as the behind the scenes time
Does my hypnotherapist seem to care about me and my issue and have a treatment plan that seems realistic?
Does it feel right?
Do I like and trust them?
Do they have the relevant qualifications and experience?
A hypnotherapist should be a member of a hypnotherapy register such as the GHR (General Hypnotherapy Register) and will be regulated by the GHSC (General Hypnotherapy Standards Council).
They will undergo CPD (Continuing Professional Development) each year to keep skills up to the mark.
A good hypnotherapist will know some history of hypnosis and will understand why they do what they do and how it works.
Not every issue that comes to a hypnotherapist is one that they can deal with!
There are a bewildering number of mental health issues. Some we are legally obliged NOT to treat such as epilepsy and schizophrenia.
Some we may not have the relevant experience or training to approach. A good hypnotherapist will refer you to a relevant specialist.
Hope this helps! Bottom line: talk to your hypnotherapist and meet them!
Graham Howes Advanced Hypnotherapist and NLP practitioner. Certified Weight Loss Professional. Trained in PTSD and Psychological Trauma. PLR FLR and Regression therapist.
CNHC approved (Gold standard of complementary practitioners)
TEL: 01473 879561 Mob: 07875720623 Skype grahamhowes1
GHR registered GHSC regulated
Gastric band hypnosis is a hypnosis treatment for weight loss. This treatment is sometimes also referred to as ‘hypno gastric band’, ‘virtual gastric band’, mind band, or ‘gastric band surgery hypnosis’. It is a branch of weight loss hypnotherapy that was initially just aimed at clients with obesity issues.
It turns out that it is effective across the board if you want to slim without yet another slimming approach that only works short term.
We have known since 1917 that diets usually fail – that is because it is difficult to stick to a diet regime and gimmicky approaches get boring.
You are probably here because you want to lose some weight and are weighing up your options.
You might also have tried everything else and are looking for a radically different approach.
I have written this blog about the hypnotic gastric band for you so that you can find out what this treatment involves and decide it may be for you.
Gastric band hypnotherapy is a powerful hypnotic suggestion program that convinces your unconscious mind that your stomach is already full, although, in reality, the portion size was smaller than usual.
It teaches the mind to recognise “feeling full” again.
It mimics Bariatric surgery without having to have real surgery,
The hypno gastric band is a natural alternative to expensive surgery which, like all medical interventions, comes with risks to life as well as potential benefits.
Real weight loss surgery could cost up to £10,000 to you or to the NHS.
I have seen real gastric band patients who had bariatric surgery but didn’t tackle why they overeat – so were desperately trying to cheat the system.
Have a look below and complete a list of twenty questions that will help you establish whether your weight loss issues fall into the bracket of conscious eating issues, or whether you might be an emotional eater.
Generally speaking, people for whom weight loss hypnosis is suitable, fall into two categories:
The first group are people who want to lose up to around stone in weight whose weight issues simply come down to a lack of conscious eating.
The second group are people who come with a bigger weight issue that may have been going on for many years and is underpinned by emotional eating issues.
Below you will find two sets of questions that can help you identify where you fall on the spectrum.
Finding out where you fit in is important because that will determine what your weight loss hypnosis treatment should focus on and how it should be structured.
Those who overeat because of a lack of conscious eating would typically answer ‘no’ to the majority of the following set of conscious eating questions, and ‘no’ to the majority of the set of emotional eating questions below.
Those with emotional eating issues would typically answer ‘no’ to the majority of the conscious eating questions, and ‘yes’ to the majority of the emotional eating questions below.
Both groups can lose weight by hypnosis.
See below which group you belong to.
If you are an emotional eater and concerned about your weight gain, you can lose weight by hypnosis.
The more of these questions you answered with ‘yes’, the more you are on the emotional eating side of the spectrum. Find out below what that means.
The more questions you answered with ‘no’, the more you may benefit from weight loss through hypnosis.
From these two sets of questions you can begin to appreciate that weight loss hypnosis views issues with excess weight as a complex issue that involves the mind and emotions as much as the body.
We start developing our relationship with food during infancy where we learn how hunger feels in the body, how to ask (cry) for food, how to ingest food (fast or slow), how to sense when we have enough, and feel satisfied after a meal.
As our relationship with food develops throughout childhood, we often pick up bad habits from parents and carers. One such bad habit, which often features in weight loss hypnosis is the habit to get emotional needs met through ingesting food. Bad habits can become deeply ingrained and can be hard to shake. The inner toddler stamps their foot and demands to be fed!
Weight loss hypnotists, in designing a treatment protocol, will want to have a detailed consultation with you to evaluate where you fall on this spectrum and what your particular needs are. The design of your program will be based on this consultation.
If you veer towards the conscious eating side of the spectrum your practitioner will recommend working with suggestion hypnotherapy to help your unconscious mind get on top of cravings, motivation for exercise, starting to eat slowly and really listening to your body’s signals. The idea would also be to understand WHY you overeat.
If you veer towards the emotional eating side of the spectrum, as well as the above issues, your practitioner will likely recommend some work utilising regression hypnosis, where present day issues are resolved by revisiting the source experience and dealing with the associated emotions that might be driving cravings or using food as a tranquilliser.
Using hypnotic regression your weight loss hypnotist will help you revisit source experiences in an easy and very doable way so you do not become overwhelmed. They will help you make sense of those experiences, re-interpret them from an adult’s perspective and feel the associated emotions in hypnosis where they are bearable so that you can let them go, learn from them if necessary, and move on with your life.
It’s important for you to understand from the start that weight loss is a complex issue which does not resolve overnight.
As a rule of thumb, the more you veer towards the emotional eating side of the spectrum, the more long term you can expect the work to be.
On the plus side, hypnotherapy does not involve the same regular expenditure that you would have to plan for typically weekly psychotherapy sessions.
Typically, your practitioner will suggest regular sessions. They may be spaced weekly.Initial sessions may be longer.
Later sessions will be shorter as they may be focused on maintenance.
Depending on how much weight you want to lose, plan hypnosis into your life for at least a few months, and for up to two years.
Remember, the approach is to lose weight gradually and naturally, at your own pace. Give your mind and body time to adjust at every step.
Yes, hypnosis can be more costly than other weight loss programs. I charge £260 for a four part course with a fifth session available if you are slipping. The upside is that you are less likely to yoyo diet and have to go on yet another diet with this approach as this is NOT a gimmicky dieting approach.
The first thing to consider, however, is what you get from HypnoGastricBand Weight Loss Hypnosis
Generally speaking, I would suggest that gastric band hypnosis is an ideal part of a hypnosis weight loss program for someone who:
Gastric band hypnosis is the ‘Rolls Royce’ approach in the portfolio of a weight loss hypnotist. It gives the weight loss program the edge
Having said all that, there is nothing that precludes someone with a conscious eating issue to include the powerful hypno gastric band in their weight loss program.
If you feel drawn to gastric band hypnosis, it may be just the thing for you.
Like any other hypnosis program, gastric band hypnosis starts with deep mental and physical relaxation protocol that aims to get you as relaxed as possible – all clients enjoy this!
Once you are deeply relaxed, the hypnotist uses a powerful suggestion based approach. This is based around agreed strategies with the client – so it comes from you and is allied to extensive experience. I have for instance been offering this approach since 2010.
In session one we put in place strategies to handle the drivers for overeating and motivate weight management
Session two is often about making adjustments and establishing mindfully eating and carefully shopping.
Session three is the regression session where we regress to cause but also help you dump all the emotional baggage that might be blocking you in Life
Session four is the Hypno Gastric Band “operation” where we pretend to your unconscious mind that you are undergoing laproscopic gastric banding surgery.
This lap band surgery places a gastric band around the upper part of the stomach creating a pouch and establishes a level of stricture that curbs the appetite.When the food hits the obstruction it sends a signal to the hypothalamus to stop eating. The food then passes normally through the band and is digested as normal.
The basic underlying concept here is that the subconscious mind does not know the difference between reality and imagination. If you can convince your unconscious mind that you can do something, then your unconscious mind will deliver success.
To convince your unconscious mind, your hypnotist may even use smells and sounds you would associate with a hospital setting.
This will be combined with implanting powerful post hypnotic suggestions to the effect that, from now on, your stomach will only be able to eat small portions.
Often you have a session in reserve if there are any changes in your life that upset our work.
There are many success stories of people who have lost weight with gastric band hypnosis, for example this one here which was featured in the Daily Mirror.
Firstly, gastric band hypnosis used on its own in a once off session may not be enough to help you overcome your weight issue.
It is best used as part of a comprehensive weight loss hypnosis program which addresses all aspects of your weight issue in a way that’s tailor-made for you as an individual.
Secondly, you mustn’t take the idea of the gastric band completely literally.
What do I mean by that?
The virtual gastric lap band surgery will be performed in a hypnotic trance state so that the suggestions will sink into your unconscious mind.
If they sink in even just a small bit, your unconscious mind helps you lose weight by directing you towards eating much smaller portions. Maybe half of what you usually eat. Which means you will lose weight.
Do not expect that your conscious mind will be convinced that you have actually undergone surgery. It won’t be. It doesn’t have to be. That is not what matters in the process.
Instead, you’ll change your mind set and expectations to look at the virtual gastric band as a tool, as a means to an end.
What matters are the effects of the treatment on the unconscious mind and the changes you make to your diet post treatment.
When you adopt this pragmatic mind set, you are better equipped to get the best out of your treatment because you won’t get side tracked by your mind’s inbuilt censors ‘evaluating’ how realistic the session was for you.
“At sixty, my doctor told me I needed a heart bypass. He urged me to lose weight starting from before the surgery date. That was easier said than done. I had been overweight for most of my adult life. I’m a ‘foodie’. I enjoy cooking and trying out new recipes. I enjoy inviting friends over for dinner. What to do?
A friend told me about weight loss hypnosis and I decided to give it a try. I was full of doubt whether it would do anything, and I didn’t notice much initially.
The gastric band session made all the difference. It was after that I started finding my way. I continued to eat what I enjoy, but I started eating smaller portions, and I started- for the first time in my life- to really chew my food, to take my time and enjoy every bite.
The first week after the gastric band hypnosis I lost four pounds and I continued losing weight from then on. I now maintain my weight and don’t need maintenance sessions.”
“After I had children, I became an emotional eater, always grazing, especially in the evenings after the children were in bed. There was an emptiness inside me and I was trying to fill it. I put on a lot of weight over the years. I tried various weight loss programs and I would lose weight, but it never lasted long. Eventually I tried hypnosis. I lost five stone after the virtual hypno gastric band.
This work will be spread out over an extended period of time, which allows sufficient time for both body and mind to adjust to the changes made. Regular weekly sessions are ideal. They allow for regular top-ups while also spreading out the cost of the treatment over a longer period of time.
For gastric band hypnosis to work for you, importantly, you’ll have to like working with hypnosis as a method.
There are a number of blogs I’ve written that can help you gain a clear picture of what hypnotherapy treatments are like and how you might benefit.
Skype Worldwide: grahamhowes1
Landline: 01473 879561
In our very stressful world we sometimes self medicate with food, or comfort eat, when we are stressed, bored, or anxious – we sometimes get “food addiction.”
The short term snack which is often very high in fat sugar or salt which gives us a feeling of comfort.
This comfort rapidly wears off so we can feel the need to repeat the comfortable experience. Before we know it the family sized chocolate bar / crisps / cake / ice cream are eaten. Then we feel guilty: “WHY did I do that!?”
We know full well that foods high in fat sugar and salt can be incredibly harmful and could lead to heart trouble, type 2 diabetes, cancer, osteoarthritis and back pain as we put the system under strain. You only have to think of carrying even a few stone of fat in rucksacks worn front and back for a few hours of activity like walking up stairs or even running and you get the picture of where obesity can really harm us. I am only scratching the surface but don’t need to labour the point!
A diet won’t address the underlying issues of why you overeat binge pick and nibble or comfort eat. So when you fail or give up and go back to the “normal” eating which includes sugary faty salty snacks the wight comes back and then some!
Many studies have demonstrated this since the first known study in 1917 exposed the problems with dieting.
Really you have to deal with WHY you are overeating.
Then you need to put simple weight management strategies in place and stop obsessing about small amounts of pounds gained or lost or calories or sins.
All of this leads to a bad relationship with food and we need to establish a good relationship, get some form of exercise that you might enjoy, eat well, good food, decrease portion size AND feel full.
Address boredom, anxiety and stress with strategies.
In other words it is easy and doesn’t need elaborate gimmick diets!
Add in the HypnoGastricBand which makes you feel fuller sooner and we have developed an approach together that can be permanent in helping you Manage your Weight AND Your Life better.
Client case studies:
I had one client with a badly organised boss who would seemingly pop his head around the door every 30 minutes or so with a: “This needs to be done NOW!!!” The trouble was there were already about 5 things with “absolute priority.” My client had her secret weapon – her Curly Wurly drawer and she would reach for her favourite sweet to “give her energy” and “get her through.”
She was now almost 30 stone.
We worked on how to deal with the stress. I half jokingly suggested she send her boss fo a session on prioritising. We looked at how to NOT use a sugary fatty chocolate snack as self medication. We dealt with underlying anxiety. I persuaded her to have an honest conversation with her boss.
We realised that otherwise she was on track for possible type 2 diabetes as well as possible osteoarthritis and cardiac problems. The RDA fo sugar is six teaspoons per DAY. Her Curly Wurly had NINE teaspoons of sugar in just one bar!
Another client was “addicted” to jelly babies and we tried to find the source of this “addiction”. Actually it was a similar habitual response to the above. We uncovered through hypnosis a long forgotten incident when her parents were gong through a tough time and she picked up on their anxiety aged 8 and got very anxious and weepy.
She recalled her Mother leaning over her in a red gingham frock. She was 8 years old and sitting in the garden in the sun. Her Mother gave her a huge bag of jelly babies and said: ” Never mind darling .. you eat these jelly babies any time you feel anxious and you’ll feel a whole lot better!”
I suggested that she was no longer 8 years old and didn’t need to make that choice now. I also gave her some practical suggestions to streamline her Barrister’s practice.
She got back to me a year later saying:
“I have FINALLY reached target weight and size. But that is almost a side issue now, as my business is flourishing, and I feel a great deal happier. Clients are using my services more because they know that I get things done.
Clients names protected under client confidentiality requirement
Food addiction is really just a bad habit that seems to address a perceived problem such as stress boredom of anxiety, to name but three. However we can learn to ignore the blandishments of two for one,
We can learn strategies that deal with the anxiety stress or boredom that don’t involve compulsively eating (and/or drinking) to excess.
We are not addicts – it has simply been a coping habitual strategy.
If you were truly an addict you would wake up in the middle of the night with an acute craving. That happens very rarely!
We can do better with our eating and lose the weight and feel happier.
Appointments in Ipswich Suffolk, Home visits in Essex. Skype or FaceTime Worldwide and Nationwide.
Tel: 01473 879561 07875720623
Erectile Dysfunction is the inability to achieve, or alternatively to maintain, an erection.
This is sometimes linked with the inability to orgasm called Anorgasmia.
Medication, drug use, smoking, heart disease, diabetes or surgery can also affect the ability to achieve or maintain an erection or achieve orgasm.
Those are the physical reasons.
Then there are the psychological issues which are just as powerful:
One in three of us have Mental Health issues at some time in our Life. Many people pay more attention to their physical health and nutrition than they do to their mental health. Mental wellness is just as important as physical wellbeing. Learning to be mindful helps you deal with stress, anxiety depression. The self medication associated with mental distress or discomfort often leads to weight gain or using drugs or smoking or abuse of alcohol which can lead to knock on effects such as ED. Smoking has been shown to be a contributory factor in erectile dysfunction. Drugs and alcohol have been long known to affect performance.
Hypnosis and NLP combined can help deal with the source of the problem and the cravings and habits that evolve to cope with the issue.
Weight issues have a physical effect on the body. Eating junk food can lead to depression and anxiety. There are known issues with too much fat, for instance, impacting the ability of the blood to adequately supply the organs including the penis.
Body Dysmorphia Dysfunction (BDD) or poor body image can lead to a lack of confidence in our appearance and a reluctance to be naked wit another person.
Stress and financial pressures leads to worry and anxiety which impacts the ability to be sexually confident.
A Doctor friend dealing with a couple’s inability to achieve pregnancy noticed bruising around their belly buttons. Both were as it turned out still virgins because they had been told that babies were made by “rubbing belly buttons together.”
This may seem beyond belief but some people still come from sheltered backgrounds.
Some Beliefs can impact what is considered “normal.” For example: The notion that sex is ONLY for procreation could lead to a sense of guilt.
There is a lot of legitimate concern about unprotected sex leading to an STI or pregnancy even in monogamous relationships. Using condoms can lead to a decrease in sensitivity possibly leading to a loss of erection. These factors too can impact sex life.
Shyness of lack of confidence can lead to embarrassment – so for instance a demand that the light be turned off prior to making love. This removes one aspect of sexual enjoyment because sex is partly visual as well as physical and aural.
Guilt about enjoying sex – a couple I treated had been “caught” when a very young couple and feared getting caught again – so sex had become a rushed and furtive affair.
Sexual abuse, Physical and Domestic abuse, or trauma, even PTSD, can affect negatively an individual’s ability to trust and give themselves over to making love.
Unresolved issues such as lack of trust or fundamental disagreements will affect such an intimate time.
Many couples who have problems outside of the bedroom also experience problems in the bedroom.
All encompassing issues might include:
Lack of connection with your partner
Poor communication of sexual needs and preferences
Infidelity or breach of trust
Intimate partner violence
Relationship Boredom – getting stuck in a ritual of a procedure of making love instead of being in the moment and aiming to pleasure the other partner. Perhaps over the long term love making has become stale,
Anorgasmia affects both Men and Women – despite adequate sexual stimulation the person is unable to achieve orgasm / a climax. 10% of men might be affected but the majority are Women who may have NEVER had an orgasm or find it difficult to achieve one.
An orgasm is a feeling of intense physical and mental pleasure and release of tension, accompanied by involuntary, rhythmic contractions of the pelvic floor muscles. But it doesn’t always look — or sound — like it does in the films. The earth shaking orgasm is not as common as the magazines or media would have us think!
However a really satisfactory love life can be achieved with training or dealing with the issues with a trained Hypnotherapist using hypnosis and NLP.
Anorgasmia is the medical term for regular difficulty reaching orgasm after ample sexual stimulation, causing you personal distress. Anorgasmia is a common occurrence, affecting a significant number of women but also men.
Orgasms vary in intensity, and women vary in the frequency of orgasms and the amount of stimulation required to trigger an orgasm. Actually, most women don’t consistently have orgasms with vaginal penetration alone. Foreplay and sexual stimulation outside of penetration are often required. Orgasms can often change with age, medical issues or medications you’re taking.
If you’re happy with the climax of your sexual activities, there’s little need for concern.
However, if you’re bothered by either the complete lack of orgasm, or the intensity of your orgasms, initially talk to your doctor about the physical effects on Anorgasmia or Erectile Dysfunction.
I can help with the psychological dimension. A high percentage of the time it is largely psychological but you should ensure with a medical professional that there isn’t an underlying physical problem.
I will work with you in a complementary way to the Medical Professional, to resolve the psychological challenges.
30% of the population suffer from ED or Anorgasmia at some time.
70% of men suffer ED at some point in life.
Statistics vary on the extent of the problem of anorgasmia in men, but approximately 10 percent of men report problems with orgasms. 70% will suffer ED at some point in life connected with psychological issues or physiological ones.
For some men, the disorder presents itself in terms of an inability to reach climax only during sexual intercourse. They may find that when masturbating they can still achieve orgasm. In such cases, it is often possible for orgasm to be reached, but only after prolonged and intense non-intercourse stimulation.
Primary anorgasmia is the term used for men who have never experienced an orgasm, while secondary anorgasmia identifies men who have experienced an orgasm in the past but are now unable to reach orgasm.
It is estimated that around 90 percent of anorgasmia problems are related to psychological issues. Surveys point to performance anxiety as the number one psychological problem.
Performance anxiety in this context is not necessarily related to “staying power,” or duration of intercourse, but may relate more to attempts to “will” a state of sexual arousal, which in turn leads to a cycle of increasing anxiety. A man may be able to achieve an erect penis but be unable to sustain the erection. Sexual activity with a partner can take on a sense of being a chore, which increases guilt and distress.
Other psychological problems, such as stress, anxiety, depression, or lack of confidence, can be helped with a hypnotherapist. Other causes may be rooted in the development of negative attitudes towards sex, sometimes from childhood. There is also a relationship between anorgasmia and childhood and adult sexual abuse or rape. Again Hypnosis and NLP can help with that.
Marital strife and boredom within a relationship coupled with a perception of a monotonous sex life are also known psychological contributory factors.
The way an orgasm feels varies from woman to woman, and and in an individual woman, it even differs from orgasm to orgasm.
The major symptoms of anorgasmia are inability to experience orgasm or long delays in reaching orgasm. But there are different types of anorgasmia:
Lifelong anorgasmia. This means you’ve never experienced an orgasm.
Acquired anorgasmia: You used to have orgasms, but now experience difficulty reaching climax.
Situational anorgasmia: You are able to orgasm only during certain circumstances, such as during oral sex or with a certain partner. You may only reach orgasm through masturbation. Most women actually can’t reach orgasm through vaginal penetration alone – so physical stimulation of the clitoris is also necessary.
Generalised anorgasmia: You aren’t able to orgasm in any situation or with any partner.
Despite what you see in the media, orgasm is no simple, sure thing. This pleasurable peak is actually a complex reaction to many physical, emotional and psychological factors. If you’re experiencing trouble in any of these areas, it often affects your ability to orgasm. If you aren’t emotionally committed to a person and in a relationship the orgasm will have a different quality.
A wide range of illnesses, physical changes and medications can interfere with orgasm:
Medical diseases. Any illness can affect this part of the human sexual response cycle, including diabetes and neurological diseases, such as multiple sclerosis.
Gynecological issues. Orgasm may be affected by gynecologic surgeries, such as hysterectomy or cancer surgeries. In addition, lack of orgasm often goes hand in hand with other sexual concerns, such as vaginal dryness in menopause, cystitis or uncomfortable or painful intercourse.
Medications. Many prescription and over-the-counter medications can interfere with orgasm, including blood pressure medications, antihistamines and antidepressants — particularly selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
Alcohol and smoking. Too much alcohol can cramp your ability to climax; the same is true of smoking, which can limit blood flow.
The ageing process. As you age, normal changes in your anatomy, hormones, neurological system and circulatory system often affect your sexuality. A tapering of oestrogen levels during the transition to menopause can decrease blood flow to the vagina and clitoris, which can delay or stop orgasm entirely. Vaginal dryness can make intercourse painful.
If you’re experiencing difficulty reaching orgasm, it can be frustrating for you and your partner. Plus, concentrating on climax can make the problem worse.
Most couples aren’t experiencing the headboard-banging, earth-shaking sex that appears on TV and in the movies. So try to reframe your expectations. You could focus on mutual pleasure, from moment to moment, instead of making the orgasm the be all and end all. You may find that a sustained pleasure plateau is just as satisfying as orgasm.
We can look at your individual psychological and sexual issues and reframe them and help you reconnect with your sensual self.
If you have had a time in your life when you were enjoying a happy and successful sex life we can reconnect with that.
We can teach the unconscious those things it doesn’t know.
We can deal with underlying issues such as fear, depression, or anxiety, trauma or lack of confidence.
We can start to see ourselves as a sexual being again with the capability of gaining and sustain an erection and achieving climax.
We can practice Pelvic Floor Exercises – 6 second contractions with feet turned in to each other and then turned out. 6 repeats of that. Then hold a contraction for 20 seconds.
Perfect your technique. Tighten your pelvic floor muscles, hold the contraction for three seconds, and then relax for three seconds. Try it a few times in a row. When your muscles get stronger, try doing Kegel exercises while sitting, standing or walking.
Anger is a normal, healthy emotion. It has a purpose. However, it could be a problem if you find it difficult to keep it under control. You can learn to control your anger, and you should: anger directed towards a job not done, or a promise broken, is understandable, sometimes anger will express truthfully how we are feeling – but it should never get out of control because it leads to bad or unintended consequences such as a loss of trust or even a relationship. Worst is when it is used as a means of control of others which is not only unfair but also can be the worst form of domination. Anger can be a useful way to blow off steam but should not lead to harm of others – unless in the rare event that we are actually under physical attack.
Everybody has a physical reaction to anger: But you should be aware of what your body is telling you, and take steps to calm yourself down, because it will generally lead to a better outcome.
Your heart beats faster and you breathe more quickly, preparing you for action. This is based in the fight or flight mechanism. When we were Hunter Gatherers or Farmers many millennia ago we became hard wired to either fight an adversary or run away. We would pump adrenaline and lash out or run as fast as possible.
An angry response may also be rooted in past behaviour. If losing your temper got you out of trouble in the past, or you “got your way” as a child or teen, then it might have seemed like a successful strategy.
You could also notice other signs, such as tension in your shoulders or clenching your fists. If you notice these signs, then you need to get out of the situation if you have a history of losing control.
Count to 10 .. slow breathing down .. and learn how to anchor a calm state
Counting to 10 gives you time to cool down, so you can think more clearly and overcome the impulse to lash out. Anchoring calm enables you to slow down and think.
Breathe out for longer than you breathe in, and relax as you breathe out. You automatically breathe in more than out when you’re feeling angry, and the trick is to breathe out more than in. Anchor your calm state. This is something you can learn to do. This retrains you to be calmer. This will calm you down effectively, and help you think more clearly. Your adrenaline will stop pumping. You will learn that being calm gets better results.
If you lose your temper there will be many times when you do or say something you regret. It will often lead to unfortunate consequences: Relationships break down, trust is lost, at worst – you could end up in legal trouble.
Most people regret who they become when they are angry and may feel that they: “cannot help it.” However they can and should for their own sake and those around them – there is really no excuse for lashing out verbally or physically when there are better ways to handle the matter.
Once you can recognise that you’re getting angry, and can calm yourself down, you can start looking at ways to control your anger more generally.
Bring down your general stress levels with exercise and relaxation. Running, walking, swimming, yoga and meditation are just a few activities that can reduce stress. Exercise as part of your daily life is a good way to get rid of irritation and anger.
Practicing self hypnosis will help you train yourself to be mindful and calm and learn how to deal with the issue in the best way rather than the worst way – lashing out.
Make time to relax regularly, and ensure that you get enough sleep. Drugs and alcohol can make anger problems worse. Consider asking for help with managing alcohol and drugs. They tend to lower inhibitions and, actually, we need inhibitions to stop us acting unacceptably when we’re angry. Learning self hypnosis is a great way to relax.
Writing, making music, dancing or painting or enjoying a sport can help release tension and reduce feelings of anger. Finding a new project or hobby. Perhaps you once wanted to explore photography or learn a language or write a local history. Many a client has gone on to find a new, enjoyable, and even profitable avenue to explore. Extending skills also makes you more employable. Some clients have set up one person businesses. Channeling energy into something new.
Maybe you want to master a sport more fully or channel any aggression productively.
Perhaps you could join a rambling group and walk for miles, or a book club, and make new friends?
There are many classes available to channel energy.
Discussing your feelings with a friend, or a Professional Hypnotherapist, can be useful and can help you get a different perspective on the situation. Many people go through similar situations but you might find that they are much better at resolving them than you. Borrow their experience.
I can help you change unhelpful ways of thinking. Thoughts and projections such as: ‘It’s unfair,’ or ‘People like that shouldn’t be on the roads,’ will just make anger worse.
Learning to change your thought processes like this will keep you focused on whatever it is that is triggering your anger. When you are mindful of this, and let these unhelpful thoughts go, it will be easier to calm down. You will find that these new ways of thinking and behaving work much more satisfactorily than the old ways. Life is a long process of learning where we should take the lessons from failure and experience and not repeat what has failed!
always (for example, “You always do that.”)
never (“You never listen to me.”)
should or shouldn’t (“You should do what I want,” or “You
shouldn’t be on the roads.”)
must or mustn’t (“I must be on time,” or “I mustn’t be late.”)
ought or oughtn’t (“People ought to get out of my way.”)
not fair (“It’s not fair – why should they …)
Sometimes when people talk about “anger” what they actually mean is aggression, says Dr James Woollard, a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist. “Often when people experience or appear to show anger, it’s because they are also feeling fear or perceive a threat, and they are responding with a ‘fight’ response to this.” “Asking yourself, ‘What might I be scared of?’ can give you a different set of choices about how to respond,” says Dr Woollard. “You might be angry that something has not gone your way. But you may also be scared that you might be blamed or hurt as result. Recognising this might allow you to think and act differently.”
“Managing your anger is as much about managing your happiness and contentment as your anger,” adds Dr Woollard. “It should be a part of developing your emotional intelligence and resilience.”
If uncontrolled anger leads to domestic violence (violence or threatening behaviour within the home), there are places that offer help and support. You can talk to your GP or contact domestic violence organisations such as Refuge, Women’s Aid or the Alternatives to Violence Project. Read about getting help for domestic abuse.
If you feel you need help dealing with your anger, I can help you to learn how to handle your anger, understand why you get angry, and deal with any past issues that may trigger the angry response.
A typical anger management programme involves one-to-one counselling and working together to find the best strategies for YOU. The programme is usually three ninety minute sessions. In some cases, however, it may be over a couple of months.
I offer a free assessment and then you can decide for yourself.
Call or Text: 07875720623
Graham Howes Advanced Hypnotherapist and NLP Practitioner for Anger Management in Ipswich Suffolk
I am quoting in full as a public service a scholarly article from 2009 on the efficacy of hypnotherapy in assisting with pain management and relief. I would add that NLP is also extremely effective in this regard and also to promote healing. It is also important to empower the sufferer to have a positive attitude to recovery. This type of Pain Relief Hypnosis and NLP is available from me. It can be effective with Back Pain, Parkinson’s and Stroke Pain, Cancer Pain and Motivation for Wellness as well as the other areas of pain mentioned below.
Graham Howes Pain Relief Hypnotherapist:
Article on the efficacy of Hypnosis in Pain Relief:
Int J Clin Exp Hypn. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2009 September 25.
Published in final edited form as:
Int J Clin Exp Hypn. 2007 July; 55(3): 275–287.
Gary Elkins,1 Mark P. Jensen, and David R. Patterson
Author information ? Copyright and License information ?
The publisher’s final edited version of this article is available at Int J Clin Exp Hypn
This article reviews controlled prospective trials of hypnosis for the treatment of chronic pain. Thirteen studies, excluding studies of headaches, were identified that compared outcomes from hypnosis for the treatment of chronic pain to either baseline data or a control condition. The findings indicate that hypnosis interventions consistently produce significant decreases in pain associated with a variety of chronic-pain problems. Also, hypnosis was generally found to be more effective than nonhypnotic interventions such as attention, physical therapy, and education. Most of the hypnosis interventions for chronic pain include instructions in self-hypnosis. However, there is a lack of standardisation of the hypnotic interventions examined in clinical trials, and the number of patients enrolled in the studies has tended to be low and lacking long-term follow-up. Implications of the findings for future clinical research and applications are discussed.
Pain that persists for longer than 6 months is referred to as chronic pain (Keefe, 1982). Unrelieved chronic pain can cause considerable suffering, physical limitations, and emotional distress (Turk, 1996). Further, chronic pain is one of the most common reasons for seeking medical care but often persists despite treatment with analgesics and physical modalities. For example, epidemiologic studies indicate that approximately 11% to 45% of individuals in the United States experience chronic back pain (LeResche & Von Korff, 1999), 75% of patients with advanced cancer suffer persistent pain (Bonica, 1990), and chronic pain is the most common reason for the use of complementary and alternative therapies (Astin, 1998; Eisenberg et al., 1993).
Interest in hypnosis for pain management has increased with recent evidence that hypnosis can reduce pain (and costs) associated with medical procedures (Lang et al., 2000), and there are now an adequate number of controlled studies of hypnosis to draw meaningful conclusions from the literature regarding chronic pain (Jensen & Patterson, 2006; Montgomery, DuHamel, & Redd, 2000; Patterson & Jensen, 2003). Hypnosis in the treatment of chronic pain generally, but not always, involves a hypnotic induction with suggestions for relaxation and comfort. Posthypnotic suggestions may be given for reduced pain that can continue beyond the session or that the patient can quickly and easily create a state of comfort using a cue (i.e., taking a deep breath and exhaling as eye lids close). The focus of hypnosis in the treatment of chronic pain also often involves teaching the patient self-hypnosis or providing tape recordings of hypnosis sessions that can be used to reduce pain on a daily basis outside the sessions. In our experience, some patients experience an immediate reduction in pain severity following hypnosis treatment, whereas others can obtain reduction in pain with repeated practice of self-hypnosis or hypnosis sessions.
The purpose of the present paper is to evaluate the efficacy of hypnosis for the treatment of chronic pain as determined by a review of controlled prospective trials. Studies are reviewed with regard to types of chronic-pain problems treated with hypnosis. This state-of-the-science review includes some recently published clinical trials that have not been included in any previous reviews, as well as a discussion of the implications of the findings for future research and clinical applications.
Thirteen studies, excluding studies of headaches (note: hypnosis in the treatment of headaches is reviewed elsewhere in this issue) were identified that compared outcomes from hypnosis in the treatment of chronic pain to either baseline data or a control condition. Hypnosis has been applied to a variety of chronic-pain conditions including those from cancer (Elkins, Cheung, Marcus, Palamara, & Rajab, 2004; Spiegel & Bloom, 1983), low-back problems (McCauley, Thelen, Frank, Willard, & Callen, 1983; Spinhoven & Linssen, 1989), arthritis (Gay, Philippot, & Luminet, 2002), sickle cell disease (Dinges et al., 1997), temporomandibular conditions (Simon & Lewis, 2000; Winocur, Gavish, Emodi-Perlman, Halachmi, & Eli, 2002), fibromyalgia (Haanen et al., 1991), physical disability (Jensen et al., 2005), and mixed etiologies (Appel & Bleiberg, 2005–2006; Edelson & Fitzpatrick, 1989; Melzack & Perry, 1975). These studies are reviewed in regard to research design and outcomes for each chronic-pain condition.
Spiegel and Bloom (1983) assigned 54 women with chronic cancer pain from breast carcinoma to either standard care (n = 24) or weekly expressive-supportive group therapy for up to 12 months (n = 30). The women randomised to the group therapy condition were assigned to groups that either did or did not have self-hypnosis training as a part of their treatment. The hypnosis intervention was directed toward enhancing patient competence and mastery in managing pain and stress related to cancer. Hypnotic training included suggestions to “filter out the hurt” of any sensations by imagining competing sensations in affected areas. Patients were also given instructions for using self-hypnosis outside of the group-therapy sessions. Both treatment groups demonstrated significantly less pain and suffering than the control sample. Hypnosis was not the main focus of the expressive-supportive group-therapy sessions, however, patients who received hypnosis in addition to group therapy reported significantly (p < .05) less increase in pain over time (as cancer progressed) compared to patients who did not receive the hypnosis intervention.
Elkins et al. (2004) conducted a prospective, randomised study of 39 advanced-stage (Stage III or IV) cancer patients with malignant bone disease. Patients were randomised to receive either weekly sessions of supportive attention or a hypnosis intervention. Patients assigned to the hypnosis intervention received at least four weekly sessions in which a hypnotic induction was completed following a standard transcript. The transcript included suggestions for relaxation, comfort, mental imagery for dissociation and pain control, and instruction in self-hypnosis. In addition, patients in the hypnosis intervention were provided with an audiocassette tape recording of a hypnotic induction and instructed in home practice of hypnosis. The hypnosis intervention group demonstrated an overall decrease in pain (p < .0001) for all sessions combined. The mean rating of the effectiveness of self-hypnosis practice outside the sessions was 6.5 on a 0-to-10 scale.
McCauley et al. (1983) conducted a prospective trial comparing hypnosis and relaxation training for chronic low-back pain. Seventeen outpatients were assigned to either self-hypnosis (n = 9) or relaxation (n = 8). The baseline was an EMG-assessment session and 1 week later the patients began eight individual weekly sessions. No significant change in any outcome measure was observed during the 1-week baseline period. Patients were assessed 1 week after the completion of treatment and then again 3 months after the treatment ended. Patients in both groups were found to have significant reductions in pain as measured by the McGill Pain Questionnaire and visual analog ratings of pain. Patients given the hypnosis intervention reported significant pre- to posttreatment (percent improvement in the three pain measures were 31%, 25%, and 25%, respectively) and pretreatment to 3-month follow-up improvement. However, both the hypnosis intervention and relaxation were effective; neither proved to be superior to the other.
Spinhoven and Linssen (1989) compared training in self-hypnosis to an education program for chronic low-back-pain patients using a crossover study design. Forty-five patients with low-back pain were assigned to receive one of the two treatments first, followed by 2 months of no treatment/follow-up, then the treatment that they had not yet received, followed by another 2-month follow-up period. A pain diary was used as a measure of pain intensity, up-time, and use of pain medication. Distress and depression were assessed using the Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL-90). Patients in the hypnosis condition received hypnosis that included a variety of suggestions such as relaxation, imaginative inattention, pain displacement, pain transformation, and future-orientated imagery. Patients were taught to use self-hypnosis and in the fifth session they were given an audiotape to facilitate continued self-hypnosis practice. Patients in the education condition received lectures and facilitated discussion to induce an attitude of self-control of pain. A number of patients dropped out of this study; however, the data that were available from the 24 patients who completed both phases of the study (and therefore received both treatments) showed significant pretreatment to 2-month follow-up improvement on all outcome measures except pain intensity. Further, the post hoc analyses did not reveal any significant differences between the two treatment conditions on any measure. It was concluded that the treatment package was effective in teaching patients with chronic low-back pain to better cope with their pain and to achieve improved adjustment to chronic pain.
Gay et al. (2002) compared the effectiveness of hypnosis and Jacobson relaxation for the reduction of osteoarthritis pain. Thirty-six patients with osteoarthritis pain were randomly assigned to one of three conditions: hypnosis, relaxation training, and a no-treatment/standard-care control condition. The hypnosis intervention consisted of eight weekly sessions that began with a standard relaxation induction followed by suggestions for positive imagery, as well as a memory from childhood that involved joint mobility. The subjects in the standard-care control condition were administered the outcome measures and were offered treatment after their last follow-up assessment. Patients in the hypnosis treatment showed a substantial and significant decrease in pain intensity after 4 weeks of treatment, which was maintained through 3 months and 6 months of follow-up. In comparison, patients in the no-treatment control condition reported little change in pain during the 6 months of this trial. However, although significant differences between the hypnosis and the standard-care control condition were found mid treatment (4 weeks after treatment started), post treatment, and at follow-up, the differences between the effects of the hypnosis intervention and the relaxation control on pain reduction were not statistically different.
Dinges et al. (1997) enrolled 37 children and adults with sickle cell disease (SCD) who reported experiencing episodes of vaso-occlusive pain into a prospective 2-year treatment protocol. A pre- and post experimental design was used and participants were asked to complete daily diaries during 4 months of baseline and during the 18 months of treatment that involved weekly (for the first 6 months), bimonthly (for the next 6 months), and once every 3 weeks (for the final 6 months) cognitive-behavioural intervention that centred on self-hypnosis training and practice. The hypnosis intervention included suggestions for ideomotor responses (e.g., hands moving together, arm becoming lighter and rising) and encouragement to develop individualised metaphors and self-suggestions to use for pain management. Results indicated the self-hypnosis intervention was associated with a significant reduction in the number of pain days. There were significant baseline versus treatment phase differences observed on: (a) the percentage of days during which both SCD pain (from 20 to 11 days) and non-SCD pain from (19 to 6 days) were reported by patients, (b) percentage of days of non-SCD pain that medication was taken (from 6% to 1%), and (c) percentage of “bad sleep nights” on non-SCD pain days (from 8% to 2%). No significant changes were found in the percentage of days of SCD pain that medication was taken or on the percentage of bad sleep nights on SCD pain days, however. The authors concluded that the overall reduction in pain frequency was due to the elimination of less severe episodes of pain.
Temporomandibular disorder can be associated with chronic pain related to dysfunction of the masticatory musculature, the temporomandibular joint, or both. Simon and Lewis (2000) examined the effectiveness of hypnosis on temporomandibular pain disorder in 28 patients. Measures of pain symptoms (pain intensity, duration, and frequency) were assessed on four separate occasions: during wait list, before treatment, after treatment, and at 6-month follow-up. The hypnosis intervention consisted of education about hypnosis and five sessions that involved an eye-closure induction, relaxation imagery, suggestions for limb catalepsy, metaphors, suggestions for hypnotic analgesia and anaesthesia suggestions, and suggestions that muscle tension would serve as a cue for relaxation. Patients were also instructed to practice self-hypnosis daily with audiotaped recordings of the hypnotic treatment. The results indicated a significant decrease in pain frequency (p < .001), pain duration (p < .001), and an increase in daily functioning. Analyses also suggested that the treatment gains were maintained for 6 months after treatment with reduced pain and improved daily functioning.
Winocur et al. (2002) compared “hypnorelaxation” to the use of an occlusal appliance or an education and advice condition for the treatment of temporomandibular pain. The study sample consisted of 40 female patients who were randomly assigned to the three treatment groups: (a) hypnorelaxation (n = 15); (b) occlusal appliance (n = 15); and (c) education/advice (n = 10). The hypnorelaxation intervention included progressive muscle relaxation suggestions and self-hypnosis training for relaxation of facial muscles. Patients in the occlusal appliance condition were provided with a full-coverage, hard acrylic appliance constructed to fit the maxillary arch. Patients assigned to the education and advice condition were provided with recommendations regarding how to manage activities and diet in order to better manage pain. Pain intensity (current and worst) was assessed before and after treatment using visual analog ratings. Both active treatment modes (hypnorelaxation and occlusal appliance) were more effective than education/advice in alleviating sensitivity to palpation. However, only patients in the hypnosis condition (not the occlusal appliance condition) reported significantly greater decreases in pain intensity: 57% reduction for current pain intensity and 51% reduction for worst pain intensity compared to patients in the education/advice condition.
In a controlled study, Haanen et al. (1991) randomly assigned 40 patients with fibromyalgia to groups that received either eight 1-hour sessions of hypnotherapy with a self-hypnosis home-practice tape over a 3-month period, or physical therapy (that included 12 to 24 hours of massage and muscle relaxation training) for 3 months. Outcome was assessed pre- and post treatment and at 3-month follow-up. The hypnosis intervention included an arm-levitation induction and suggestions for ego strengthening, relaxation, improved sleep, and “control of muscle pain.” Compared with patients in the physical therapy group, the patients who received hypnosis showed significantly better outcomes on measures of muscle pain, fatigue, sleep disturbance, distress, and patient overall assessment of outcome. These differences were maintained at the 3-month follow-up assessment and the average percent decrease in pain among patients who received hypnosis (35%) was clinically significant, whereas the percent decrease in the patients who received physical therapy was marginal (2%).
Jensen et al. (2005) examined the effects of 10 sessions of standardised (script-driven) hypnotic analgesia treatment on pain intensity, pain unpleasantness, depression, and perceived control over pain in 33 patients with chronic pain secondary to a disability. Outcome measures were assessed before and after a baseline period, as well as after treatment and at 3-month follow-up. The hypnosis intervention consisted of a hypnotic induction followed by five specific suggestions for alteration of pain: diminution of pain, relaxation, imagined analgesia, decreased pain unpleasantness, and replacement of pain with other non – painful sensations. Also, posthypnotic suggestions were given for daily practice of hypnosis but the patients in the study were not given any practice tapes prior to the 3-month follow-up assessment. Analyses indicated significant pre- to post treatment improvement in pain intensity, pain unpleasantness, and perceived control over pain (but not depressive symptoms) over and above change that occurred during the baseline period. Improvement was also maintained at the 3-month follow-up. Hypnotisability and concentration of treatment (e.g., daily vs. weekly) were not significantly associated with treatment outcome. However, cognitive expectancies assessed after the first session showed a moderate association with pain reduction.
Melzack and Perry (1975) examined the effects of hypnosis and neurofeedback in 24 patients who had a variety of chronic-pain problems. Baseline data was collected during two no-treatment (baseline) sessions, and patients were then randomly assigned to one of three treatment conditions: four sessions of hypnosis alone, eight sessions of neurofeedback training alone, or both hypnosis and neurofeedback training. The hypnosis treatment consisted of a taped hypnotic induction with suggestions for relaxation, ego strengthening, a feeling of greater tranquility, and of being able to overcome things that are ordinarily upsetting and worrying. No direct suggestions for pain control were included in the hypnosis treatment. The McGill Pain Questionnaire was administered before and after each of the baseline, training, and two post training practice sessions. There was a reduction in pain observed during the hypnosis training (range, 21%–32% improvement; median improvement = 23%), however, none of the observed changes in either the neurofeedback or hypnosis conditions were statistically significant in comparison to the baseline phase.
Edelson and Fitzpatrick (1989) evaluated hypnosis and cognitive-behavior therapy for treatment of chronic pain. Twenty-seven patients with various chronic-pain problems (back pain being the most frequent) were randomly assigned to: cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) alone, CBT plus hypnosis treatment, or an attention control (supportive, nondirective discussions). The hypnosis and CBT treatments were identical with the exception of a hypnotic induction. It is noteworthy, however, that the CBT intervention used in this study included some what might be considered “hypnotic components.” Specifically, the CBT intervention encouraged the participants to: (1) avoid using the “pain” label to describe their sensations; (b) reinterpret pain sensations as “numbness” through the use of imagery (this component, in particular, might be considered as a hypnosis intervention); and (c) monitor and restructure negative self-talk. The results indicated decreases in pain intensity for both the hypnosis intervention and the CBT treatment that were sustained at 1-month follow-up. However, only the CBT treatment resulted in significantly lower pain rating scores in comparison to the attention control condition. In this study, adding a hypnotic induction appeared to have little positive effect. In fact, in this study the CBT treatment minus the induction had a greater effect on pain behaviors. Given the “hypnotic characteristics” of some aspects of the CBT treatment used in this study, this finding is somewhat puzzling. However, this does suggest the possibility that a hypnotic induction may detract from some forms of CBT for chronic pain.
Appel and Bleiberg (2005–2006) investigated the association between hypnotizability and hypnosis for treatment of chronic pain. Twenty-seven patients with a variety of chronic-pain problems (15 lumbar pain, 7 rheumatological pain, 3 cervical pain, 1 peripheral neuropathy, 1 gynecological-related pain) received hypnosis treatment sessions directed at “teaching self-regulation of the affective and sensory components of pain.” The word hypnosis was not mentioned during the intervention, which included relaxation training, autogenic statements, guided imagery for pain alteration and health and healing, and individualization to use images “in a way that is best for him or her.” The results indicated a significant reduction in pain ratings pre- and posttreatment. Measures of relaxation and suffering were not related to hypnotizability. However, changes in pain ratings were significantly correlated with hypnotizability (r = .55, p < .001) as measured by the Stanford Clinical Hypnotic Scale.
This review identified 13 published controlled articles that evaluated the efficacy of hypnosis for chronic pain. With the exception of two articles (Appel & Bleiberg, 2005–2006; Melzack & Perry, 1975), the studies reviewed included a control condition for comparison. In each of the studies, the hypnosis intervention was demonstrated to be significantly more effective than a no-treatment condition in reducing pain in chronic-pain patients. Moreover, the efficacy of hypnosis in reducing pain was consistently confirmed for a wide variety of different chronic-pain conditions (e.g., cancer, low-back pain, arthritis pain, sickle cell disease, temporomandibular pain, disability-related pain).
However, there have been a relatively small number of studies conducted for each of the different chronic-pain conditions (in some cases only one study). Although it is encouraging that 13 controlled studies have reported on the use of hypnosis with chronic pain, there are a number of basic research design weaknesses that tend to run throughout most of these reports. The number of patients enrolled in the studies tends to be low, bringing up issues of power to detect group differences. Control conditions used usually have lacked credible controls for placebo and/or expectation. Multiple measures of outcomes are seldom employed as are follow-up assessment of sufficient duration (i.e., long-term follow-up). Thus, although the findings provide support for the general applicability of hypnosis in the treatment of chronic pain, considerably more research will be needed to fully determine the effects of hypnosis for different chronic-pain conditions (e.g., neuropathic, sickle cell disease, arthritis, etc.).
Studies of hypnosis in the treatment of chronic pain have often included instructing patients in self-hypnosis as a way of coping with pain and gaining greater self-control over pain (e.g., Dinges et al., 1997; Elkins et al., 2004; Gay et al., 2002; Haanen et al., 1991; Jensen et al., 2005; McCauley et al., 1983; Simon & Lewis, 2000; Spiegel & Bloom, 1983; Spinhoven & Linssen, 1989; Winocur et al., 2002). This usually includes providing patients with tape recordings of hypnosis sessions and instructions in home practice of self-hypnosis. However, research has yet to determine the importance of and the best ways to provide instruction in self-hypnosis practice. For example, it is unknown whether standard tapes are as effective as individualized recordings. Also, the necessary frequency of practice has not been determined or even if home practice is as effective as “live” sessions. Our clinical experience suggests that patients who are more actively involved in self-hypnosis practice benefit more and may have more long-lasting gains (see Elkins et al., 2004; Jensen & Barber, 2000). In clinical practice, we recommend to patients that they practice at least once a day. To facilitate this, we provide them with tape recordings of the sessions. We also give them instructions for practicing self-hypnosis without the use of a recording. Some patients choose to practice by listening to a tape, and some choose to practice self-hypnosis without a tape; many do both.
Chronic pain is a complex phenomenon that may be affected by emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and physiological responses and a multimodal treatment approach may be important for some chronic-pain patients. However, there have been few studies that have evaluated the effect of hypnosis as an adjunct to other treatment modalities for chronic pain, including, for example, treatment programs designed to increase activity and to reduce the negative effects of pain on function (Patterson & Jensen, 2003). One study compared CBT to CBT combined with a hypnotic induction. In that study (Edelson & Fitzpatrick, 1989), only the CBT treatment alone resulted in significantly lower pain-rating scores in comparison to an attention-control condition. This finding is somewhat puzzling, because some aspects of the CBT treatment used in this study appeared to be very similar to a hypnotic intervention (i.e., the CBT intervention included instructions to reinterpret pain sensations as “numbness” through the use of imagery). However, this study suggests the possibility that the addition of a hypnosis induction may have detracted from an intervention focused on altering maladaptive cognitions. Further research is needed to determine the best methods of integrating hypnosis with CBT and other multimodal interventions for chronic-pain management.
The present review also reveals that there is a lack of standardization in hypnotic induction and interventions. There is a need to more clearly identify the components of a hypnotic intervention to better allow comparison across studies and to differentiate hypnosis from other “hypnotic-like” interventions such as relaxation training. For example, in the present review, treatments such as progressive muscle relaxation and mental imagery appeared to be approximately as effective as interventions that were labeled as “hypnosis.” It may be that these treatments are similar in regard to mechanism of action and effect. Research is needed to determine the efficacy of hypnosis and specific hypnotic suggestions and interventions. Jensen and Patterson (2006) proposed a basic chronic-pain hypnotic-analgesia intervention that consists of the following: (a) a standard hypnotic induction that includes a focus of attention and relaxation; (b) suggestions for alteration in subjective experience of pain; (c) hypnotic suggestion lasting at least 20 minutes; (d) four to seven sessions indicating “brief hypnosis treatment” and eight or more sessions to indicate “hypnosis treatment;” and (e) instruction in daily home practice of self-hypnosis. Greater standardization in hypnosis research protocols for chronic pain would allow for greater specificity of treatment and clearer identification of innovations in the development of particularly effective hypnotic interventions.
The current review indicates that hypnotic interventions for chronic pain results in significant reductions in perceived pain that, in some cases, may be maintained for several months. Further, in a few studies, hypnotic treatment was found to be more effective, on average, than some other treatments, such as physical therapy or education, for some types of chronic pain. These findings are encouraging for an initial wave of studies, but a more sophisticated body of research including larger sample sizes and more rigorous controls would be far more convincing. Further, most studies have focused on how hypnotic suggestion may be used to achieve analgesic effect, but hypnosis may also have other benefits for chronic-pain patients such as reduced anxiety, improved sleep, and enhanced quality of life (Jensen, McArthur, et al., 2006). These targets for hypnosis intervention with chronic-pain patients warrant further investigation. Research to date has been very promising and continued research is needed to fully evaluate the effects and mechanisms of hypnosis interventions for chronic pain in randomized trials and clinical practice.
Gary Elkins, Texas A & M University College of Medicine and Scott and White Clinic and Hospital, Temple, Texas, USA.
Mark P. Jensen, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington, USA.
David R. Patterson, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington, USA.
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Afterword from Graham Howes – Hypnotherapist for Pain Management in Ipswich Suffolk
In the UK I would also point to the work of Professor L G Walker at Hull University with regard to treating aids and cancer with hypnotherapy.
See the webpage below on how I can help:
I offer help with pain relief for Cancer and Stroke and Parkinson’s sufferers.
Call Graham: 07875720623
Stress is a normal, necessary function of everyday life.
There is stress when you must meet a deadline, drive in heavy traffic, or run late for a meeting.
Stress is a natural and essential component of human existence, and in moderate doses, stress is even healthy and beneficial for mental and physical functioning.
During times of stress our brain pumps specific hormones and neurotransmitters, such as cortisol and adrenaline. These chemicals are associated with the “fight-or-flight” response in our bodies. This might have been useful when facing a sabre tooth tiger – but we don’t need the feelings of hyperstimulation, anxiety and panic, in most every day situations: such as explaining to the accountant about a minor overspend!
When these chemicals are released they excite our nervous system, increase our blood pressure, make our heart beat faster and raise blood glucose levels.
Our senses sharpen and we receive “a short-term buzz”, according to psychiatrist Dr. Lynne Tan of Montefiore Medical Centre in New York City, in an article on stress and mental health, for American Television.
Moderate short-term stress is beneficial because the chemicals released help to strengthen our immune system, improve performance and memory, and encourage positive mood. In all, stress helps us to accept challenges, take risks, and react quickly in an emergency.
Our bodies create a burst of energy and “we can feel as if we are ready for anything.” However sometimes this can lead to severe and paralysing anxiety, “feeling stressed out” or even a Panic Attack.
Stress on the body and brain is necessary for us to react appropriately to situations, however, stress becomes unhealthy when the “fight-or-flight” response becomes overactive and inappropriate.
The physical and psychological dangers of chronic stress are prevalent and can affect all aspects of daily life:
A human body: “doesn’t distinguish between physical and psychological threats,” explains Jeanne Segal, PhD, in her article published on Helpguide.org – “Understanding Stress: Signs, Symptoms, Causes and Effects.”
For instance, when one is stressed over a busy schedule, argument, traffic jam, or finances: “the body reacts just as strongly as if it were facing a life-or-death situation.”
While experiencing high amounts of chronic stress the nervous system continually releases large amounts of hormones.
The brain does not get an opportunity to reach a healthy level of homeostasis or mental equilibrium.
Thus, the over-activity and excessive stimulation of these hormones, that are supposed to be used for only short-term instances, can kill brain cells, and cause many other unhealthy consequences; such as high blood pressure, muscle tension, mental and physical exhaustion.
“Chronic stress affects nearly every system in your body,” Segal explains. People who suffer from chronic stress also experience emotional sensitivity, and other physiological symptoms, such as headache, diarrhoea, nausea, restlessness, loss or increase of appetite.
Chronic Stress can also “suppress the immune system, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, contribute to infertility, and speed up the ageing process.
Long-term stress can even rewire the brain leaving a person more vulnerable and susceptible to anxiety, panic attacks, and depression.
Mindful Hypnotherapy is one modality for retraining the person to use stress in a calm and productive way, to utilise the buzz of adrenaline, and yet to avoid getting into the hyper stimulation of fight or flight or chronic stress.
We spend a fortune on physical wellness and neglect mental wellness.
One related approach is using the NLP process of anchoring – or training through Hypnosis to use Mindfulness in a constructive way.
Each person is unique and so is my approach for each person.
Graham Howes Advanced Hypnotherapist and NLP Practitioner Stress Management
About Graham Howes: I was in Harley Street as a Hypnotherapist but am mainly in Ipswich Suffolk.
I can offer onsite visits for Businesses for a wide range of bespoke interventions.
I was also a Professional Actor and still Teach, Direct Theatre Shows, and Write Plays with COME DANCE WITH ME going on a National Tour soon.
Talk to me for Free on: 07875720623
There is a perception that losing weight is about counting calories, sins, dieting or using meal replacements or taking the latest wonder drug or pill.
Obesity is often seen as difficult to deal with with a sense that bariatric surgery is the only option when the diet counselling or CBT fails.
We have known for a long time that the diet and the attendant obsessions with pounds lost often leads to WEIGHT GAIN. Enough of yoyo dieting or boom and bust! This is a radically different 21st Century Approach – we know the diet works short term and when you go back to “normal eating’ back comes the weight!
If you really want to tackle obesity or binge eating disorder then you need to tackle WHY you overeat. I run weight loss with hypnotherapy courses which include Hypno Gastric Band hypnosis.
These sessions tackle the underlying drivers and triggers of craving or “food addiction”. Actually the overeating is usually triggered, in my experience, by low self esteem, boredom, anxiety, stress, depression, lack of confidence and more. I have seen clients who comfort eat or binged as a defence mechanism who had suffered physical and / or sexual or domestic abuse or trauma.
There are many reasons why people might use food for comfort and they might binge or constantly pick and nibble or graze. These are generally coping habits rather than food addictions. If you recognise the patterns that trigger the cravings then you will stop self medicating with food. There is a sense in which food has become for some like a tranquilliser.
I work with clients to address these coping habits with strategies and by questioning their default thinking processes.
We put in place a weight management approach. The truth is that obsession with small amounts of weight lost or gained is too obsessive and calorie control or starvation or meal replacement or other slimming regimes are frankly BORING.
Weight loss is also almost never in a straight forward downward line: If you go to the Gym and gain muscle mass you will appear to gain weight. You might lose a lot of water at first and then it all slows down as you tackle the fat. This is not failure – you have to recognise that until you find your stable weight and size you will be up and down in weight.
If you assume that you have failed then you will go back to overeating. Actually failure should be a lesson to improve!
The final session is the revolutionary HypnoGastricBand. This is the last session – because I have treated real Gastric Band patients who were STILL trying to overeat because they had not dealt with the Psychological factors of their being overweight or obese.
I have been a Certified Hypno Gastric Band Practitioner since it appeared and have seen many clients with a high success rate because we work together to help you lose weight and tackle the drivers for obesity.
Talk to me for FREE – each person has their own reasons for overeating, and tackling obesity or just being overweight, is about working with the individual.
This holistic approach not only deals with the root causes of overeating but helps you deal with your issues in life – low self esteem, depression, lack of confidence, stress, anxiety, panic attacks, trauma , PTSD procrastination, boredom, addiction or what ever is your particular problem.
If you are a Comfort Eater, Binge Eater or simply cannot seem to stop picking and nibbling or grazing – talk to me.
If you are overweight or labelled obese (BMI over 28) and tend to yo yo diet – talk to me for FREE.
FREE CONSULTATION: Text or call 07875720623 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org and I will call you in confidence.
Graham Howes Advanced Hypnotherapist and NLP practitioner and Certified Hypno Gastric Band Practitioner since 2010
About Graham Howes – Weight Loss Specialist in Ipswich:
I have practiced in Harley Street London W1 – currently I offer this approach at competitive rates in Ipswich or Hadleigh Suffolk and Colchester Essex or Worldwide or Nationwide by Skype. I have a great deal of experience with weight loss and eating disorders.
I have had a sudden influx of people who are deemed to be obese who have the real Gastric Band. They had the Bariatric Surgery for obesity but are still trying to over eat.
The problem is that it sometimes works when you put the physical intervention of a Gastric Band or a Gastric Bypass etc BUT if the patient did not deal with WHY they overeat then they will often be in a worse position! They will crave to overeat but the Gastric Band, at least in some cases, stops them from doing that. So what do they do? They get creative.
The Gastric Band has little impact if they are a Sugar Addict or crave the tranquillising effects of Binge or Comfort Eating or Grazing!
Clients have admitted blitzing food in a liquidiser to get past the system. Puréed Fish and Chips anyone?
I have a great deal of experience with the Virtual Gastric Band or HypnoGastricBand Hypnosis – sometimes known as Hypno Band or Mind Band – so now I am offering an after care service to deal with the overeating connected with the REAL Gastric Band.
We will find strategies for such things as stress, boredom, anxiety, worry, depression and more.
We will deal with the food addiction – if that is what drives the excessive eating or drinking. Actually it is a habit not an addiction.
Together we can tackle the chocolate or sugar or alcohol addiction.
Together we can tackle all the underlying reasons driving the overeating so that, with the Gastric Band, you get the overeating and obesity under your control.
Click Below for more information or text or call me for a FREE CONSULTATION and ASSESSMENT on: 07875720623