Science Behind Hypnosis
Hypnosis is not a mumbo-jumbo. There’s an enormous amount of study made behind it. Hypnotherapy is a proven therapeutic aid.
It’s proven to have over 80% success rate. It’s more than most of other therapies. It doesn’t work for everyone, but it works most of the time for most of people.
Throughout history, there were periods of intense interest and advancement in hypnosis, all in the medical field. Modern hypnosis was given birth by Mesmer, Viennese physician, followed by two British surgeons, J. Elliotson and J. Esdaile. They have all had great success with it. James Esdaile reported performing 3000 operations without anaesthesia, with hypnosis only. His followers were Braid (verbal suggestions) and Bernheim (Freud’s teacher) to mention the most important ones. Most of them have been persecuted by the conventional medical establishment and forced to resign their post. Still yet, it did not prevent their followers from developing it even further.
Hypnosis is one of the most researched subjects. There’s over 100,000 researches done on the subconscious mind. And as you see, it has a tracked history.
In 1958 the American Medical Association defined Hypnosis as everything that bypasses the critical factor of the conscious mind.
American Psychotherapy & Medical Hypnosis Association Cochrane Review Abstracts, Oxford, 1999 reports:
Hypnotherapy is a process by which a person, with the assistance of a trained hypnotherapist, has his/her subconscious mind opened to suggestion for the purpose of changing one or more behavior patterns. When the subconscious is spoken to directly, it may be possible to reprogram old behavior patterns and introduce new ideas and positive suggestions. These positive suggestions may then be used to help make the changes you desire.
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Comparison to other treatments
Alfred Barrios PhD showed the following statistics concerning the effectiveness of Hypnosis:
Psychoanalysis 35% recovery after 600 sessions Behavior Therapy
72% recovery after 22 sessions Hypnotherapy
93% recovery after 6 sessions
80% of patient visits to their doctors are stress related. Almost 60% of all employee absences from work are related to stress. The World Health Organization calls stress a global epidemic. Stress kills over 1 million people a year in the U.S. Heart disease and high blood pressure; suppression of the immune system; deaths from smoking; deaths from obesity. Stress is also a contributing factor in arthritis, herpes, fibromyalgia, insomnia, migraines, chronic pain, and infertility.
Hypnotherapy for Weight Loss
In 1995 a team of researchers from the University of Connecticut reviewed six weight loss studies that compared the effect of cognitive therapy -identifying eating triggers and defusing them with and without hypnosis. About 70% of the overweight people who got hypnosis lost more weight and kept it off longer than those who got only talk therapy. A Dateline NBC experiment on weight management indicates hypnotherapy was more successful than other methods.
Hypnosis & Pain Management
In 2002 Mount Sinai researchers went through 20 studies on hypnosis and surgical pain. They found that adding hypnosis to standard post-surgical care sped recovery almost 90% of the time, in terms of levels of pain, anxiety and the need for painkillers.
Hypnosis & Cancer
Reported in the Los Angeles Times 1/5/2004; movie and TV actor Henry Polic II went to Marc Schoen of UCLA School of Medicine for treatment of a malignant skin cancer. Polic was also on a drug and radiation regimen that caused a paralysing nausea, plus swelling blisters in his mouth so severe that he had trouble speaking and swallowing. It took a few sessions, but swelling dropped by about half and the blisters near the back of his throat disappeared.
A 1995 consensus statement from the National Institutes of Health cited strong evidence that hypnosis can reduce chronic pain associated with cancer and other conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome and tension headaches.
Hypnotherapy in Medicine
Dr. Andrew Weil recommends hypnotherapy to alleviate pain, lessen the side effects of chemotherapy, alleviate symptoms of autoimmune disease, counter-act anxiety and sleep disorders, and get rid of warts. He says, “In general, I believe that no condition is out of bounds for trying hypnotherapy on.”
The Wall Street Journal reports on 10/7/2003:
Numerous scientific studies have emerged in recent years showing that the hypnotized mind can exert a real and powerful effect on the body. The new findings are leading major hospitals to try hypnosis to help relieve pain and speed recovery in a variety of illnesses. University of North Carolina is using hypnosis in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome by helping patients use their mind to quiet an unruly gut. Doctors at the University of Washington’s regional burn center in Seattle regularly use it to help patients alleviate excruciating pain. Several hospitals affiliated with Harvard Medical School are employing hypnosis to speed up post-surgical recovery time. In one of the most persuasive studies yet, a Harvard researcher reports that hypnosis quickened the typical healing time of bone fractures by several weeks.
Some studies indicate that hypertensive patients may lower blood pressure by 80% and 16% are able to discontinue medications.
Open-heart surgery patients have fewer postoperative complications as indicated by Behavioral Medicine 1989.
Dr. Ewin with Occupational Health Center indicates burns heal faster and healing time is cut up to 2/3 of normal period.
Infertile women have a 41% conception rate per Journal of American Medical Women’s Association 1999.
The Mayo Clinic reports on their web site: According to preliminary studies, hypnotherapy can be used to: Treat pain during childbirth and reduce labor time; control bleeding and pain during dental and surgical procedures; relieve cramping and other symptoms associated with irritable bowel syndrome; reduce blood pressure and regulate blood flow; enhance the body’s immune system and ability to fight infection; control nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy; reduce the intensity of frequency of migraine headaches in children and teenagers; treat and ease the symptoms of asthma; hasten the healing of some skin diseases; improve psoriasis and atopic dermatitis; change negative behaviors such as smoking, bedwetting and overeating; reduce fear, stress and anxiety; eliminate or decrease the intensity of phobias.
Hypnotherapy & Sleep Problems
Hypnotherapy has been successfully employed with sleep disorders such as nightmares and anxiety associated with falling asleep as well as night terrors. There is general agreement that relaxation based approaches, including hypnosis, are “effective treatments of insomnia”, according to a 1996 National Institutes of Health Technology Assessment Panel report published in JAMA.
Insomnia patients reported improved sleep by 100% and 91% either eliminated or reduced sleeping medications.