Dr. Axe on Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy: Benefits of the Power of Suggestion

Hypnotherapy — practiced in one form or another for thousands of years —  is used successfully today to treat pain, PTSD, anxiety, IBS, smoking cessation, eating disorders and much more.  


Hypnosis is a natural process involving a focused state of attention that allows for an increased receptiveness to suggestion.  When utilized effectively, this resource state can be used for powerful self improvement.   This state is often associated with a profound state of relaxation.  Such relaxation in and of itself can produce significant improvements in symptoms associated with pain, anxiety, sleep disturbances, and many others.

The Natural State of Hypnosis

Everyone has experienced hypnosis in one form or another many times throughout their life.  As we enter sleep, and as we wake up, we pass through a state that could be described as hypnosis.  Have you ever watched a movie, and become so involved in the movie, that you begin to feel the emotions of a character in the movie?  Perhaps you even experienced fear, joy, or sadness while watching the movie.  This occurs by creating a state of focused attention (hypnosis), and applying suggestion (story line of the movie).  Which in turn produces a targeted effect within you.  Advertising and political campaigns regularly make use of hypnotic principles and language patterns to influence thoughts and behaviors.

Types of Hypnosis

Stage Hypnosis – This is probably the type of hypnosis that most people have familiarity with.  It is generally used in a comedic setting for entertainment purposes.  As such, a stage hypnotist utilizes hypnosis (and other principles) for the purpose of entertaining an audience.

Clinical Hypnosis – Involves working with clients, either individually, or in groups, to help them facilitate a desired change.  This type of hypnosis employs a professional relationship between the hypnotist and client(s).  Clinical hypnosis is often used to help with medical conditions, fears/phobias, sports performance, or general self improvement.

What can Hypnosis help with?

Hypnosis and related techniques can be applied to almost any aspect of our lives.  Some of the more common applications include:

  • Pain Management
  • Anxiety
  • Stress Management
  • Tobacco Cessation
  • Weigh Loss
  • Fears/Phobias
  • Public Speaking
  • Addictions
  • And Many More

What to expect during a Hypnosis Session

As previously discussed, hypnosis is a natural state that we all experience on a daily basis.  The process for utilizing hypnosis for effecting change is a pleasant and relaxing experience.  You will be aware of everything that is happening, and will remember as much you would from any normal conversation.  Hypnosis is a process of teaching and training you to have better control of your mind, and better influence over your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors.  Allowing you make changes in your life to maximize your health, happiness, and well being.

There may be times during the process of hypnosis when you may be focused very intently on what is being said, and at other times, you may notice that your mind may begin to wander to other things.  This is perfectly OK, and completely natural.  The subconscious mind will still process what is being said even if you are not completely aware of it.  in fact, the natural process of your conscious mind wandering can actually be helpful as it is distracted, allowing the subconscious mind to absorb and process the suggestions without interference of the conscious mind.

If at anytime during your session, you feel the need to move, scratch an itch, or adjust for comfort, feel free to do so, as it will only serve allow you to be more comfortable, and relax even deeper.

Many people often wonder what hypnosis will “feel” like.  There is no one or “right” feeling of hypnosis.  Whether you fell a light and floating sensation, or a feeling of sinking deeply into the chair, or something completely different, if is perfectly fine.  Everyone, and every experience, can be different.  Whatever feeling you may have, is “right” for you, and is your experience.