Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy (CBH) combines Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) (see previous page) with Hypnosis and is extremely effective in helping people to change uhealthy beliefs, strengthen healthy beliefs and ideas and move forward. Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy involves using hypnosis in a clinical setting and underpinning it with the strong psycho-therapeutic model of CBT. It is the combination of the two approaches that creates a powerful and potent way to help people to overcome a range of challenges. Hypnosis on its own can help people to feel better and can bring about short term change but unless the 'faulty' thinking is changed the original problem will re-emerge and carry on.
Hypnotherapy can be used in its simplest form to help calm and relax people requiring minimal change on the part of the individual concerned or it can be used to help address more complex behavior patterns such as overeating, phobias and treatment of panic disorders with the hypnotherpy being supported by behavioral and thought work carried out inbetween sessions. Hypnosis has the backing of the medical community and is used extensively to help people with stress, anxiety, phobias, habit-related issues as well as more medical conditions such as pain, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and support in infertility. It can also be be used to speed up and maximise the change process in CBT.
Infertility/Fertility and Hypnotherapy
Due to my special interest in infertility, I use a combination of CBT and Hypnotherapy to support women with fertility/infetility issues and those going through the IVF process (please see pages on this for more information).
How Does Hypnosis Work?
Hypnosis is a naturally occuring state which allows us to access the unconcious mind and, through it, to make changes to our routine thoughts and behaviors. It is a naturally occurring state and most people will experience this state naturally several times a day e.g. just as you go to sleep and as you waken up, when staring at the flames of a fire. During hypnosis, you remain fully aware of your surroundings and your cannot be made to do anything you don't want to do. You are very much in charge and the hypnotherapist is more of a navigator than a driver. You will feel deeply relaxed and this allows your mind to enter a state of focussed attention whereby you can make changes to your thoughts and behaviours, leaving behind old unhelpful thoughts and behaviours and embracing new ones. These changes can be made more quickly using CBT combined with hypnosis than when just using CBT.
Evidence Supporting the Using Hypnotherapy with CBT
Research shows that CBT plus hypnosis producues significantly better results than either CBT alone or hypnosis alone (Kirsch, I, Montgomery, G and Sapirstein, G. 1995 and Alladin, A and Alibhai, A. 2007) and ongoing research supports this. CBH is certainly very helpful when working on strengthening new healthy and helpful beliefs. Indeed Kirsch, Montgomery and Sapirstein's research showed tha the average client receiving cognitive–behavioral hypnotherapy showed greater improvement than at least 70% of clients receiving nonhypnotic treatment. In Alladin and Alibhai's research clients showed a greater reduction in depression, anxiety and hopelessness measures and these were maintained at 6 and 12 months after treatment. However, it is your choice whether you want to include Hypnotherapy in your treatment or not.(Kirsch, I, Montgomery, G and Sapirstein, G. 1995 and Alladin, A and Alibhai, A. 2007)).
Why Consider CBH?
Ultimately CBH is about helping peopple to feel better, fast and then to maintain that state on an ongoing basis! Most of us have busy lives and want to be able to have treatment, feel better and then get on with our lives as quickly as possible and the combination of cognitive behavioral therapy make allow this to happen.
Kirsch, I., Montgomery, G., & Sapirstein, G. (1995). Hypnosis as an adjunct to cognitive-behavioural psychotherapy: A meta-analysis. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 63, 214-220.
Alladin, A. & Alibhai, A. (2007). Cognitive hypnotherapy for depression: an empirical investigation. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 55(2): 147-166.