The Benefits of Hypnotherapy

Sophia Thesson By Sophia Thesson, 5th Aug 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Alternative Medicine

Hypnotherapy is an age old technique that is used in various medical fields successfully. The history of hypnotherapy gives us an idea of how its benefits were unveiled, and adopted as a technique in the medical and psychotherapeutic disciplines.

The Benefits of Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy as a medical application has often not been fully acknowledged due to claims that it is unscientific and often fails. Interestingly, studies have shown that 90% of the population can be hypnotize; suggesting that the remaining 10% of the population might be blocked by internal resistances, which can be overcome if the individual is open to working on his/her resistances.

Scientific and medical uses of hypnotherapy

What does the history of hypnosis and hypnotherapy tell us about its scientific and useful application in medicine and healthcare?

Hypnosis dates back to the healing practices of Egypt and Greece and is the word for ‘sleep’ in Greek. Therefore, hypnotherapy is the treatment of a variety of health conditions by hypnotism or by inducing prolonged sleep.

Pioneers of hypnotherapy include James Braid (1795 - 1860) who was primarily a Scottish eye doctor, who developed an interest in mesmerism quite by chance. He happened to see that one of his patients while waiting in his waiting room had fallen into a trance. He gave this patient some commands and to his surprise he complied. Meanwhile, a British surgeon in India, James Esdaile (1808 - 59), recognized the enormous benefits of hypnotism for pain relief and performed hundreds of major operations using hypnotism as his only anesthetic. Freud (1856 to 1939) initially used hypnosis in his practice, but abandoned it in favor of his psychoanalytic technique. Ultimately his stance delayed the development of hypnotherapy, turning the focus of psychology away from hypnosis and towards psychoanalysis. In more recent times, the recognized leading authority on clinical hypnosis was Milton H. Erickson, MD (1901-80), a remarkable man and a highly effective psychotherapist who overcame childhood polio and treated many of his patients with hypnosis successfully. (Darren Marks, 2008)

Although, it took nearly 200 years, in 1955, the British Medical Association approved the use of hypnotherapy as a valid medical treatment, with the American Medical Association (AMA) giving its approval in 1958. Hypnotherapy is now used in a number of medical fields including psychotherapy, surgery, dentistry, research and medicine. It has been used to successfully assist those who want to control their weight, manage pain or stop smoking.

A lifesaving approach is the use of hypnotherapy instead of anesthetic for patients who are allergic to anesthetic drugs. This trend has also been followed by Dentistry to help patients who are allergic to all kinds of novocaine drugs. Not to forget, it can help patients who have phobias.

Hypnotherapy is an important and valid technique used to help non-medical patients overcome anxiety, remove mental blocks, unearth buried memories, reduce stress or manage stress, increase motivation and enhance personal achievement.

Hypnotherapy Training

There are no specific requirements to sign up for hypnotherapy- training. However, the art and practice of hypnotherapy is a very serious undertaking. Thus the training has to be thorough and well supervised. It is important to look for a reputable training institute. In addition, receiving an accredited certificate is vital to ensure that you are able to practice without any hindrance or delay afterwards.

Presently, there are no new legislations but leading professionals are advocating professional regulation in the near future. The great news is anyone who is interested can seek out a reputable training course and start their journey to become a qualified hypnotherapist. Keep in mind that there might be differences between the regulations in the US and the UK. To avoid information overload the best is to start with training courses offered by colleges or accredited by medical institutions.


Hypnotherapy, Medical Care, Psychotherapy, Stress Relief

Meet the author

author avatar Sophia Thesson
I enjoy sharing my insight and interest in various topics, including my professional knowledge of psychology and education.

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