Hypnosis Can Help Improve Deep Sleep 2020-07-28T21:29:55+00:00

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Hypnosis can help improve deep sleep.

In previous studies of the effects of hypnosis on sleep, study participants
were simply asked to report back on how well (or poorly!) they felt they
slept after hypnosis. But in a recent study, Swiss researchers were able to
measure its effects by monitoring brain activity in a group of
healthy, young women as they took a 90-minute nap after listening to a
hypnotic suggestion tape.
The women who were deemed the most susceptible to
hypnosis spent 80 percent more time in slow-wave sleep (the deep,
restorative phase

of our shut-eye) after listening to the hypnosis tape than they did after
listening to a neutral spoken text.
“[T]he results may be of major
importance for patients with sleep problems and for older adults,” lead researcher Maren Cordi of the University of Zurich said
in a statement.
“In contrast to many sleep-inducing drugs, hypnosis has no
adverse side effects.” 1 *It can ease symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. *
In a 2003 study, 71 percent of 204 irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
patients reported improved symptoms after 12 weekly hour-long hypnosis sessions
, the APA reported. Of those who reported improvements, 81 percent continued to feel better up
to six years after the hypnosis treatment had ended 
, according to the study. In a
2012 study, 85 percent of IBS patients who reported improvement after
hypnosis still felt better up to seven years later. “The conclusion is that
hypnotherapy could reduce both the consumption of healthcare and the cost
to society, and that hypnosis therefore belongs in the arsenal of
treatments for IBS 
,”researcher Magnus Simrén said in a statement. 2
*Hypnosis can quell hot flashes.*

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Among postmenopausal women who reported at least 50 hot flashes a week,
five weekly hypnosis sessions cut hot flashes by 74 percent
12 weeks later, a 2013 study
found. Meanwhile, women who did not receive hypnosis but instead had weekly
sessions with a clinician only experienced a 17 percent drop in hot flashes 

. 3
*It can ease pain.*
Hypnosis is perhaps most well-researched in the context of managing pain 

. Two meta-analyses of
existing pain and hypnosis research, published in 2000 and 2009, deemed
hypnosis effective at lowering pain associated with a number of conditions,
including fibromyalgia, arthritis and cancer
, but noted that few
psychologists were using it, and those who were had little standardization
in administering hypnotherapy. 4
*Hypnosis can calm nerves.* 

Because of its ability to harness the powers of the mind, hypnosis is often
employed to relieve anxieties related to other medical procedures, like
surgery, scans or even giving birth
, called
state anxiety. “The mechanism may be similar to the placebo effect — in
which patients’ expectations play a major role in how they feel,” Melinda
Beck wrote for the Wall Street Journal in 2012.
“Hypnosis, in turn, can
help patients adjust those expectations to minimize pain, fear and
More research is needed to determine if hypnosis might alleviate generalized
anxiety disorder or what’s called trait anxiety 

, or anxiety
relating to personality rather than a specific event, according to a 2010
review of the research.
Preliminary studies have started to examine
hypnosis in depression treatment
as well, but more
research is needed. 5 


1. www.journalsleep.org VOLUME 37, ISSUE 06 Deepening Sleep By Hypnotic
Suggestion (http://dx.doi.org/10.5665/sleep.3778) Maren J. Cordi, Dipl Psych
1; Angelika A. Schlarb, PhD2; Björn Rasch, PhD1,3,4 *University of
Zurich, **University
of Tübingen, **Zurich Center for Interdisciplinary Sleep Research
(ZiS) **U.niversity
of Fribourg, Department of Psychology, Division of Cognitive Biopsychology
and Methods, Fribourg, Switzerland.*

2. (*Gut, November 2003*).

3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23096250. Menopause.
<http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23096250#> 2013 Mar;20(3):291-8. doi:
*Clinical hypnosis in the treatment of postmenopausal hot flashes: a
randomized controlled trial. **Elkins GR
4. International Journal of Clinical & Experimental Hypnosis.
<http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10769981#> 2000 Apr;48(2):138-53.
A meta-analysis of hypnotically induced analgesia: how effective is
Montgomery GH
1, DuHamel KN
, Redd WH

5. Wall street journal Melinda Beck – April 9, 2012 “Medical Hypnosis: You
Are Getting Very Healthy”