What is Clinical Hypnosis?

Clinical Hypnosis is sometimes referred to as Hypnotic Relaxation Therapy (or HRT) because it involves the use of relaxation, mental imagery and suggestion for a therapeutic purpose.

HRT involves learning how to use your mind and thoughts in order to manage emotional distress (e.g., anxiety, stress), unpleasant physical symptoms (e.g., pain, nausea), or to help you change certain habits or behaviors (e.g., smoking, overeating).

How will I benefit from Hypnotic Relaxation Therapy?

HRT has been demonstrated to have a wide range of benefits, from simply improving symptoms or difficulties, to completely eliminating them.

Most people describe a hypnotic induction as a pleasant experience, during which they feel focused and absorbed in the hypnotic experience.

Your therapist will structure the suggestions based on your comfort and preference.

Evidence-Based Treatment For:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Insomnia
  • Self-esteem
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Abuse Issues
  • Coping with stress
  • Phobias
  • Sleep problems
  • Smoking cessation
  • Weight loss/control
  • Coping with medical procedures
  • Headaches
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Pain management

Therapist

Your therapist will likely complete a clinical interview in order to understand the history of your problems, and then develop a treatment plan. He or she will ask about past medical and psychological treatments, and determine if there are physical or emotional conditions that would contraindicate the use of HRT.

How many sessions are needed? Length of hypnotic treatment depends on the severity of the problem and your specific needs. HRT is often used with other psychotherapeutic methods, and usually involves at least five sessions, but may range to twenty or more sessions.

What Can I Expect?

A goal of Hypnotic Relaxation Therapy (HRT) is increased empowerment to help you achieve what you want to accomplish.

You cannot be hypnotized against your will or be made to do anything against your will.

While HRT involves a process of "letting go" of tension and stress, the goal is increased control of self and symptoms.

You will not spontaneously begin talking or revealing information that you do not wish to provide.

You will be aware of what is going on around you and what suggestions your therapist is providing.

You will be in control of your awareness during HRT.

What Training is Required?

The use of HRT is limited to health care providers who have completed training appropriate to their professional mandates. Many professionals receive and refine their training through continuing education workshops.

You may find local associations in your state which include psychologists, dentists, medical doctors or nurses, counselors, social workers, and marriage and family therapists with training in hypnotherapy. Your primary care physician may also be an excellent referral source.

A word of caution:

Be wary when using internet searches, as individuals who are unlicensed lay hypnotists may not have adequate training to diagnosis and develop competent treatment plans, or care consistent with standards.

Discuss your concerns with your physician, psychologist, nurse, or healthcare provider

Mitchell Olson, MA

Mental Health Therapist
Member: Minnesota Society of Clinical Hypnosis
C: (612) 562-9880, O: (320) 455-9888

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