Can hypnotherapy help with anxiety and stress?
Hypnosis has been used for centuries to treat a variety of different conditions, both physical and psychological.
Today, it is widely recognised as an effective psychological treatment that can help change perceptions, thoughts and behaviours.
But can hypnotherapy help with anxiety and stress? Read on to find out more.
What is hypnotherapy?
Hypnosis involves a process that helps you relax and focus your mind. It is thought that, once you’re in this relaxed state, you will be open to suggestions and more willing to focus on your subconscious mind.
And, contrary to what you might have seen in films or on TV, you’ll be fully in control throughout the hypnotherapy session and won’t be influenced to do anything you’re not comfortable with.
Does hypnotherapy work for anxiety?
Hypnotherapy is often used to help relax and reprogramme an anxious brain.
A study in 2016 scanned the brains of 57 people who were undergoing hypnosis and found changes in the area of the brain that allowed for greater emotional control, focussed attention, and reduced feelings of self-consciousness.
Hypnotherapy helps to reduce anxiety by encouraging the body to activate its natural relaxation response, instilling an overall sense of wellbeing. Once in the trance-like state, you’ll be able to gain better control of your behaviours and cope better with your anxiety.
It works by boosting feelings of confidence and self-belief while reducing feelings of worry and fear.
Does hypnotherapy work for social anxiety?
Social anxiety can have a huge impact on your daily life, impacting your friendships, relationships, work-life, and social life, and can prevent you from exploring new situations and environments.
As with other types of anxiety, research has found that hypnotherapy can be an effective tool for reducing social anxiety, helping you develop ways to manage your fears and calm your anxiety in social situations.
The hypnotherapist will guide you in reducing the distracting thoughts and feelings that trigger your response to social situations. The goal is to help separate your body’s anxiety response from the situations that trigger your social anxiety while encouraging you to be more receptive to new perspectives.
Studies have found that hypnotherapy can help relieve and treat social anxiety, particularly when used alongside other therapies. A 2016 study that looked at the effectiveness of hypnotherapy found that those who underwent hypnosis had a significant reduction in anxiety, compared to those who did not undergo hypnotherapy.
How can hypnotherapy relieve stress?
While some level of stress is a normal part of daily life, chronic stress can have a huge impact on an individual’s quality of life. Not only this, but unmanaged stress can contribute to a range of physical and mental health issues.
Focussing on physical and mental relaxation, hypnotherapy can be an effective way to help manage stress. A hypnotherapist can use a range of techniques to address stress, including relaxation, right-sizing, anchoring, and reframing.