Studies have shown hypnotherapy to be more effective than simply therapy or a placebo when dealing with substance abuse disorders, behavioral addictions & even chronic pain. Addiction is a disease that affects an addict’s brain, psyche & body. All the effects of addiction intersect when the addict experiences cravings. Cravings can be intensely psychological &, when they’re accompanied by physical symptoms of withdrawal, they are extremely challenging to resist.
So what is hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy, creates a deep sense of relaxation in the client along with shifts in consciousness. While in this state, the client is suggestible & the practitioner can give the client ideas, to which he/she will be more responsive than usual. This does not mean that a practitioner can control the mind of the client or that the client gives up free will. In fact, through hypnosis, a client can actually learn how to control himself/herself & their actions more effectively.
When in a state of hypnosis, the client is relaxed, their blood pressure & heart rate drop & brain waves change. While the conscious part of the mind fades back, the subconscious is fully awake & aware. This focusing of the subconscious mind means that the patient can believe suggestions; such as alcohol is bad, chocolate makes you sick or cigarettes make you physically ill. This can change his/her behaviors when brought back out of the relaxed trance.
Hypnotherapists have been helping their clients stop drinking, smoking & using drugs for years with great success. Until recently, very little was known about how the brain could just turn off the desire for alcohol or drugs, & how the subconscious mind could stop the addictive urges when a person has been hypnotized. Hypnotherapy sheds a new light & encourages success to addicts & alcoholics that feel nothing would work.
When a person is hypnotized it may be easier for them to recall a blocked memory (get to the root of a problem). By reframing the personal awareness it’s easier to change a stubborn perspective that blocks the healing process. With the right frame of mind it’s possible to go through surgery without anesthesia (think fire walking!).
Here are some ways hypnotherapy helps treat addiction & boost the success rate of traditional rehab:
- Alleviates physical & mental pain – Beyond withdrawal symptom pain lies a variety of physical & mental pains that the person in rehab may have been using drugs to treat. Hypnosis can help decrease these symptoms alongside traditional pain treatment methods.
- Adjusts your addictive behaviors – Behavioral adjustment techniques are often necessary to beat addiction. Hypnosis works on the unconscious to change these often deeply-rooted behaviors at their core.
- Stronger emotional health – Depression & anxiety caused by drug addiction can be treated by focused & sustained hypnotherapy. Treating these problems can make it easier for a person to remain strong & focused in rehab & decrease the instance of co-occurring disorders.
Is hypnosis a magic fix?
There is no one quick fix for addiction or anything else, but for many, hypnotherapy is a valuable tool in the battle against addiction. Dedication, desire & willingness to overcome any obstacle you face is key to your success. Hypnotherapy offers real benefits in your fight against addiction. It’s something that you should fully understand before committing to because it takes a lot of dedication & an openness to the treatment.
The hard truth is that the work I am doing now is a result of my own tears, anguish, sadness & desperation. I have been through the desperation of being a single mom who struggled with addiction. It is said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over & over and expecting different results; I think that this statement could be applied to the current state of affairs in addiction treatment. It’s time to look at the science of how the brain works, how the subconscious mind controls our life & how to change it for good. As simple as hypnotherapy is, it’s so powerful. Hypnotherapists use techniques that are specifically created to change the triggers in the brain, stop self-sabotage issues, release trauma & redirect the neural networks in the brain. When I started applying these same processes to myself & my clients who needed addiction help, I found that their addictive behaviors frequently stopped & that their fear of relapse was also often gone.
How does a person become “relapse proof” & not live in constant fear of relapse? In 12-step treatment you are taught that you will always be an alcoholic, or addict, & that you are always going to be fighting to not relapse.
Are you an addict for life? Calling yourself an addict or alcoholic is a constant reinforcement of your weakness. I believe that the repetition of the statement increases one’s susceptibility to relapse. From a hypnotherapy perspective, we have to stop owning the identity of being an addict. For me, I look at it as “just an experience I went through to get to this point in my life”. It’s a part of my journey, it’s NOT who I am.
Remember what you think, you believe, what you believe you become!
If you are struggling to obtain a stable recovery in 12-step groups, ask yourself: Do 12-step groups program you to fail? When you repeatedly go to meetings, your subconscious mind is programmed to be powerless to the drugs or alcohol and you’re programmed to believe that you have an incurable disease. You listen to stories of struggle & you are told that you should fear relapse. From a hypnotherapist’s perspective this makes no sense if you want to get over a problem.
When a person is seeing, feeling & experiencing themselves of having the healthy life that is free from addiction, & experiencing themselves as having long ago put addiction in his past, their brain creates a new memory. They are actually growing new neuro-associations. These neural networks get wired together to make the new reactions very real.
When looking for a hypnotherapist, your hypnotherapist should not advise you on how to detox, or give you any medical advice, & should only work with you after you have detoxed. It’s more about relapse prevention. Hypnotherapy does not produce any harmful results. It is a very positive experience that changes everything you were taught about addiction, where it is coming from & how you are supposed to feel about your future.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse or addictive behavior, & would like more information on hypnotherapy, click here to schedule your Free Strategy Session.
Love & Light,