Hypnotherapy to help reduce Anxiety

Anxiety and Stress stops you from focusing
Too stressed to function? Paralyzed by fear?

Anxiety is a natural response to a stressful situation. Sometimes though once we’ve experienced it, it’s difficult to stop. If you feel anxious, hypnotherapy can help,

Back in the 1980s, I took part in some research at the Warneford Hospital in Oxford into anxiety and panic attacks. My brain and body activity were monitored whilst was asked to hyperventilate. I experienced my breathing become erratic, difficult to take deep breaths, my heartbeat increased, my vision blurred, my mouth went dry, I felt dizzy and everything went purple, then I saw a tunnel before passing out momentarily.

So I know if anyone has had a panic attack, these are the more serious side effects you can experience.

Anxiety – symptoms

anxiety symptoms can include:

  • palpitations (racing heart),
  • breathlessness,
  • dizziness
  • sweating.

This component produces anxiety symptoms which affect us on a purely psychological level and are mostly as a direct result of adrenaline release during the ‘fight or fight’ response.

Secondly, there is a psychological component, characterised by anxiety symptoms such as:

  • irritability,
  • obsessions
  • lack of concentration
  • deep feelings of fear.

These anxiety symptoms may be constant or may be more intense during an anxiety attack (panic attack). Like the physiological anxiety symptoms, these are harmless but they can make the sufferer feel helpless and desperate.

For phobias and post-traumatic stress, the memory of a particular incident can be so vivid it’s in the forefront of your mind the whole time. This is a clue to how to deal with it, as the emotional response from the amygdala keeps the memory of the incident in the forefront of the mind. I have found those with the highest phobic response to be highly imaginative. Some people play the incident over and over and that reinforces the anxiety. Understanding what’s going on in the brain can help things enormously.

Solution-focused therapy for anxiety

Solution-focused therapy can help you concentrate on what you can do to help you move forward. Look at times when you’re not feeling so anxious and the things you can do to help you feel calm again.

Hypnotherapy for anxiety

Hypnotherapy is an excellent tool to reduce anxiety, it quietens the part of the brain that deals with the fight or flight mechanism and allow the person to gain full control of their thinking and behaviour.

BWRT of anxiety

BWRT can take a stressful situation, which plays upon the mind and changes it into a more acceptable thought. Useful for PTSD, or where an event needs to be kept secret – for military purposes or because of a court case. Using a scaling system, I don’t need to know what the problem is or was, so it’s useful for those traumatised by events one doesn’t want to talk about, we help you go from a full 10 down to 0 in the emotional charge of the memory, by replacing it with one which is preferable and feasible.

CBT for anxiety

Cognitive behavioural therapy can help you become more aware when a problem is triggered and help you understand why you may have responded a particular way. By running small experiments, you can learn that our initial response is unfounded or untrue and can learn to rationalise behaviour.

Mindfulness for anxiety

Just allowing our minds to become still for a short period of time can help us to be in charge of our thoughts, feelings and actions. Mindfulness can help that stillness that can create solutions. Consequently accepting our situation and having a sense of compassion can also help change the way you view things.

Nutritional Therapy for anxiety

Many people presume that anxiety is purely a brain function. However, over the past few years, there has been mounting evidence for bacteria in our guts to influence our moods. Sometimes it can be the result of an illness, sometimes the result of a dose of antibiotics, or extreme stress disrupting the gut flora. Whenever I see a person for anxiety I also help them look at foods which might help get their gut flora back in balance.

Using Outcomes, we can measure progress and keep moving towards a positive outcome.

Further Reading:

American Psychological Society: The role of hypnotherapy in helping to tackle anxiety issues.