Hypnotherapy Group Therapy for IBS
This is a small hypnotherapy group that is intended to target and treat brain-gut dysregulation (communication) which may be contributing to your irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) through the use of a specific treatment called Gut-Directed Hypnotherapy.
The goal of this protocol is to help the brain to re-learn how to interpret signals that are coming from the digestive tract correctly and therefore, correct any faulty signals that it may be sending back down to the gut through the on-going, two-way communication that is constantly occurring between the two.
Unlike the media-hyped displays that we often on television programs or movies, hypnosis is not a “mind-control” method where an unsuspecting volunteer begins to cluck like a chicken at the whim of the performing hypnotist. On the contrary, one of the most important factors in clinical hypnosis is the cooperation and trust that is formed between the client and the hypnotherapist.
Before answering the question of how hypnosis works, let’s first clarify what we mean by hypnosis vs hypnotherapy. Hypnosis is the practice of guiding someone into a “trance” state, which in the simplest of terms, works by engaging and guiding the subconscious mind under a state of deeply focused relaxation.
Hypnotherapy is what we refer to as the way that hypnosis is applied (think of it as the tool). While under a state of hypnosis, referred to as a “trance” state, your hypnotherapist can help your mind and body become connected in a way that is not normally accessible, through the use of suggestions that are meant to elicit the changes that you are looking to make.
Depending on your goals, hypnotherapy can be used on its own or in combination with other methods. Before attempting to engage in hypnosis, your therapist should provide you with enough education and knowledge to leave you feeling at ease with the process, or at the very minimum, with a clear understanding of what hypnosis is and answer any questions or concerns that you may have. When looking for a hypnotherapist, always make sure to ask about training or education that qualifies them to use this method.
Not everyone will be a good hypnotherapy candidate and in order to assess this, an informational consultation will be necessary in order to provide you with information, as well as to assess your needs, digestive medical history and other daily life stressors which may be components which may be compounding factors to your symptoms. For these reasons, an initial intake is necessary. Kindly note that an initial intake will not guarantee enrollment if certain conditions do not make you an appropriate candidate for hypnotherapy.
While gut-directed hypnotherapy has a substantial amount of past and on-going studies showing its efficacy in helping to relieve brain-gut communication problems that may be the culprit for many of your IBS symptoms, there are a number of other factors that may be contributing to on-going symptoms.
Nutrition, chronic stress, inappropriately treated anxiety and years of unprocessed trauma can continue to affect your digestive health and overall health. Gut-directed hypnotherapy will not address any of those factors, but other types of therapy, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or Brainspotting will.
No treatment can guarantee a “cure”, but your active participation in-between sessions will be more likely to bring you better outcomes. Here are some other commonly asked questions:
How long will this treatment take? This group is an 8-session treatment. There is an initial private introduction/intake session + seven group hypnotherapy sessions. The group meets every other week until the seven sessions are completed.
When and where does the group meet? The group will meet every other Wednesday of the month at 5:00pm until the seven-session hypnotherapy protocol has been completed. The introduction/intake sessions will take place individually.
How many people will there be in this group? There will be no more than 5 group members at one time and a minimum of two people is required in order for the group to take place. If you prefer to have individual sessions, it may be possible to have this arranged, depending on availability.