Insomnia and Sleep Disorders
If you have trouble sleeping and suffer from insomnia, then you know all too well that one of the most perplexing things about sleep, is that you cannot force it to happen, because it involves a releasing and letting go.
As a result, this process can easily be disturbed by racing thoughts, stress, tension and anxiety. Fortunately, hypnosis is ideally suited to deal with all of these problems, because it can change the way your mind interacts with your body on a deep subconscious level; teaching you how to let go, both physically and mentally.
If you have had trouble sleeping as far back as you can remember, there might even be some particular event, such as a traumatic experience or even a childhood nightmare, that lies at the root of your inability to sleep. Hypnosis can then also be used to help you uncover this event and then neutralize its lingering effect on your subconscious.
Expectation can also play a big role in your ability to fall asleep. This means the more you expect to have trouble falling asleep, the more troublesome it becomes. Here hypnosis can be used to re-train your mind so that you now expect to fall asleep, making it much more likely you will do so.
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Insomnia Fact Sheet
This is characterized by difficulty falling asleep or difficulty remaining asleep. One third of the population will suffer from it at some point in their lives, though it is most common among the elderly.
- an inability to quieten the mind and stop thinking when going to bed;
- stress and anxiety;
- pain and painful disorders;
- illness (particularly conditions that cause a shortness of breath);
- bladder sensitivity (or drinking liquid before bedtime);
- bowel sensitivity (or eating a large meal before bedtime);
- stimulants such as caffeine (found in coffee, tea, cola, chocolate);
- certain medications;
- erratic hours and sleep patterns;
- working the night shift;
- travel and new environments;
- jet lag;
- a sedentary lifestyle (with no real exercise);
- alcoholism and certain forms of drug abuse (particularly involving stimulants such as cocaine and amphetamines).
- tiredness and fatigue;
- an inability to concentrate;
- mental confusion;
- periods of extreme day-time drowsiness;
- lack of productivity;
- stress and anticipatory anxiety;
- irritability and mood swings;
How Hypnosis Can Help You
While there are natural remedies such as chamomile tea and warm milk, it is often treated with over-the-counter pills and prescription drugs. Hypnosis has proven to be one of the most effective natural remedies for chronic cases of insomnia.
If you suffer from insomnia, then hypnosis is ideally suited to helping you deal with this condition because:
- during each session you will be taught how to do self-hypnosis so that when you first lie down in bed to go to sleep you will be able to enter into this magical state and begin to systematically relax various parts of your body;
- one of the major causes of insomnia is stress and hypnosis is one of the most effective natural remedies for helping you to reduce the stress in your life;
- another main cause of insomnia is excessive thinking and hypnosis will help you to master various techniques to slow your thoughts down and stop your mind from racing from one topic to another;
- it can also help you delve into your past in order to understand what triggered this problem in the first place;
- hypnosis will also help you to easily change your beliefs and expectations so that you now believe, expect and are confident that you will now have a really good night's rest and as the old adage goes: 'what the mind can believe and conceive, it will achieve.'
Some Research That Proves These Claims...
The scientific research is conclusive. If you are capable of entering into a moderately deep state of hypnosis (something 70% of the population can achieve), then hypnosis can help you. Here is a summation of some of these studies...
Hypnosis: An Alternative Approach to Insomnia. Can Fam Physician. 1982 April; 28: 768–770. Paterson D.
The author of this paper divides sleep disorders into two categories: some originate in the body's central nervous system; while others are caused by secondary disorders such as pain, anxiety, depression and changes in lifestyle. He argues that the second group are far more likely to be successfully treated by hypnosis than the first.
Hypnotherapy for Sleep Disorders. Ann Acad Med Singapore. 2008 Aug;37(8):683-8. Ng BY, Lee TS.
This paper examines the research studies that deal with the use of hypnosis to help with sleep disorders. The authors note that hypnosis has helped people suffering from acute and chronic insomnia, as well as those suffering from recurring nightmares and sleep terrors. They also note that there is evidence hypnosis has helped those who were suffering from parasomnia (things such as bed-wetting and sleep walking). They conclude by stating that it is particularly difficult to study hypnosis using double-blind controlled studies because one of the most important requirements for a person to be able to enter into a deep enough state of hypnosis for this type of work to really be effective, is that they need to develop trust and confidence in the hypnotist.
Hypnosis for Treatment of Insomnia in School-Age Children: A Retrospective Chart Review. BMC Pediatrics. 2006, Vol. 6 (23). Anbar RD, MSlothower MP.
This study recruited 84 children and adolescents who were suffering from insomnia. By the end of the study 87% of them reported that hypnosis had helped them either significantly improve or completely resolve their sleep problems.
The Treatment of Parasomnia Disorders With Hypnosis: A 5-Year Follow-Up Study. Clin Sleep Med 2007;3(4):369-373. Hauri PJ, SilberMH, Boeve BF.
This study replicated a previous one that demonstrated that hypnosis could help those who were suffering from parasomnia (sleep disorders that include bed-wetting, sleep walking, night terrors and chronic movements). Thirty-six patients ranging from 6 to 71 years of age who all had "functionally autonomous" parasomnia (where the condition was self-sustaining) were treated with hypnosis. The authors found that one month after the treatment 45.4% of them were free of all symptoms. Eighteen months after treatment this had dropped to 42.2% and five years later it was down to 40.5%. The authors suggest that in light of these significant results, parasomnia should first be treated with hypnosis, before other remedies are tried.