The short answer is yes, if the technique is decided on as being potentially useful by both client and CBT practitioner. This is always after an assessment of the presenting problem. The technique of hypnosis is a useful and powerful one that can give clients an extra edge to help overcome issues that clients have. Hypnosis is used by me within the wider framework of CBT, never on its own. It is felt by most mental health professionals, and supported by the research, that hypnosis on its own does not produce enduring and lasting positive change. Hypnosis integrated into CBT is very effective. The CBT part of therapy needs to be of course from a properly trained and qualified CBT practitioner. Hypnosis is useful in embedding and consolidating new thinking and behaviour patterns for clients and also for deep relaxation.
Hypnosis is a technique that is used by health care professionals (such as doctors, dentists, psychologists, nurses) within their own field of practice. In the UK however, it is mainly performed by complimentary health practitioners that do not have initial training in a health or caring profession. These complimentary health practitioners call themselves "hypnotherapists" I am however, a CBT practitioner who uses hypnosis if it is appropriate to the presenting problem or problems. I am not a complimentary therapist, but a mainstream CBT practitioner, who is also specifically qualified to use cognitive hypnotherapy. Some Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) therapists claim to be cognitive hypnotherapists. NLP is not CBT, so if you come across someone claiming to be a "cognitive hypnotherapist" and is using NLP, check their qualifications and decide for yourself if you feel comfortable NLP; or do you prefer the NHS treatment of choice - CBT?
Genuine Cognitive Hypnosis therefore is best used as a part of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. Hypnosis is not a magic cure that does not require any effort on your part, but it can be very powerful and effective for weight loss, giving up smoking, and stress management. Offers of one session smoking cessation do not enjoy scientific support. At least several sessions may be required depending on the presenting problem and the underlying personal circumstances. The aim is for for brief therapy though. Cognitive Hypnosis rarely if ever, takes place in a first therapy session. The sessions can be recorded with your permission, and given to you on CD for subsequent use and reinforcement. I will use hypnosis if a client wants it to be used, but my preference is to stick to standard CBT.
The effectiveness of hypnosis as an adjunct to Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy can be seen by clicking this hyperlink.
Definitions of Hypnosis
Misconceptions about Hypnosis
Diagnostic criteria for common mental health conditions- coming soon
Stress management- coming soon
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