There are several theories about what is actually happening when a person is hypnotised and how hypnosis works. There are also several ways that it can be explained. Of course, these explanations can sometimes make one feel as if you are of a Ferris Wheel – as you can often feel as if you finish your enquiry where you began looking in. A more valuable question before delving into how hypnosis works may actually be why does hypnosis work.
Over the past decades that hypnosis has been recognised to be highly effective for a broad range of conditions, there have been many clinical trials that have been conducted to back up the physical evidence. An example if this in a clinical context a study that was published in June 2007 Journal of Paediatrics found that hypnosis produces a significant reduction in the severity and duration of headache in children along with lowering the frequency of the headaches by a massive 75%. In a non-clinical context, there was a University of Iowa meta-analysis done by Frank Schmidt, showed that when it come to quitting cigarettes hypnosis was a factor of three times more effective over nicotine replacement.
There are several theories that all still eventually point to the same essential thing, no matter how direct or obscure, they arrive at the same place. Some of these theories include that hypnosis can actually induce changes in the brains activity, while others suggest that a person going into hypnosis is ‘method acting’ the role of a hypnotised person. One of the more out there and sceptical points of view is that the entire process of hypnosis comes down to the placebo effect (this will send us down another deeper end interesting rabbit hole of begging the question of ‘what is involved in the placebo effect and how does it work?’). The one common thread throughout all of these theories that we can take home is the – when a person goes into hypnosis and profound changes are made to their lives- it is done through communication with their unconscious mind. I will continue to explain how hypnosis works in the next blog post, How Hypnosis Works & Why 2.0. If you would like to experience how it works, the click on the button below to feel the power of deep hypnotic relaxation.