Hypnotherapy Treatment for Phobias
Hypnotherapy has long been claimed to help people move past trauma and challenge their fears and phobias, but does it work?
The answer is a resounding “yes.”
Multiple studies have demonstrated this, and the fact that it has been used for so long is itself testament to its effectiveness.
In this article, we will look specifically at how hypnotherapy can be used to target phobias. First, we will discuss what a phobia is.
What is a phobia?
The word phobia comes from the ancient Greek term Phobos, which simply means “fear.”
However, “phobia” has taken on a medical significance – if someone is described as having a phobia, this means their fear is persistent, intrusive, and can severely affect their functioning.
Some more common examples include fear of spiders (arachnophobia), fear of flying (aviophobia), or fear of leaving the home (agoraphobia).
Around 10 million people in the UK have a specific phobia, making phobias a statistically significant problem.
Technically, phobias are considered to be anxiety disorders.
People suffering from phobias will go to great lengths to avoid encountering the source of their fear, but if they do encounter it might experience panic attacks (terrible experiences in themselves).
One of the most critical factors in maintaining a phobia is what’s called “secondary gains.”
Essentially, this means that the sufferer gets a benefit from not overcoming their phobia, for instance, taking time off work or extra attention from a loved one.
Sometimes a secondary gain can be so powerful that the person does not want to free from the phobia because they have too many other benefits to lose.
However, the benefits of overcoming a phobia outweigh, by far, these secondary gains.
There are many treatment options for moving beyond phobias, one of the most effective of which is hypnotherapy.
The Effectiveness of Hypnotherapy for Phobias
What exactly is hypnotherapy for Phobias?
Well, it’s exactly what it sounds like: a combination of hypnosis and therapy.
Hypnosis is a tried and tested technique that helps people to be able to concentrate on their problems in a relaxed and focus way.
This laser-like focus on the issue they want to address, whether it be a phobia, addiction, or some other problem, helps them to consider it objectively and, with the help of the hypnotherapist, explore possible solutions.
However, there’s more to it than that: hypnotherapy also allows you to interact with your subconscious mind.
Challenges to your current, unhealthy way of thinking can be planted in the form of positive suggestions.
The most significant reason hypnotherapy is so effective for challenging phobias is that the causes of phobias are often “deep-rooted.”
In other words, ascertaining the root cause of a phobia requires delving deep into the (often very complex) human psyche.
Our minds are very good at protecting us; after all, that is what your mind believes it is doing by maintaining the phobia in the first place.
One effect of these good intentions, however, can be that negative memories are repressed since it’s painful to think of them.
Often, these memories can be the cause of your phobia and have to be exposed to move past the phobia, and doing this is where hypnotherapy excels.
Hypnosis can also directly challenge the “secondary gains” mentioned earlier, which can be a significant and deeply-ingrained obstacle in moving beyond fear.
Why Choose Hypnotherapy Over Other Treatments?
You may be thinking that traditional talk therapy could help you move past your fear, but it could take years to expose those subconscious fears in this way, so why wait?
Hypnotherapy is a bit like opening a direct path to your subconscious mind which is, of course, where our thoughts originate, and what is a phobia except a result of the way you think?
Hypnotherapy can be compared to meditation in that it allows you to be a disengaged observer of your subconscious mind rather than being constantly distracted by the constant thoughts of your critical mind.
The power of hypnotherapy is so great that it can remove a phobia within three sessions, though it can take a little longer than that depending on the severity of the phobia.
One thing is guaranteed, though, and that is that it will help you move past your fears and finally reach freedom.