When I say hypnosis what is the first image that pops into your mind? Some one with a gold watch swinging back and forth repeating the phrase, “You’re getting sleepy…”? – You’re not alone. As part of looking into complementary therapies I wanted to take a look at hypnotherapy.
Does hypnotherapy lower you blood pressure? I wondered about this today while trying to figure out what I should research today. I know that hypnotherapy has been used to help people quit smoking, my friend saw a hypnotherapist and hasn’t smoked in years, but could it help lower blood pressure?
Clients that are diagnosed with high blood pressure are told to stop smoking, lose weight, reduce alcohol and reduce salt consumption, to increase exercise and reduce the effects of the stress in their lives. For most people that is easier said than done. Therapists are starting to recognize that high blood pressure cannot only be related to the usual problems we face, but also things we may not have considered. Things such as:
- Childhood events
- Social beliefs and expectations
- Conditioning and traumatic events
- Releasing inappropriate beliefs
- Family pressures
What really is hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy aims to re-programme patterns of behavior within the mind, enabling irrational fears, phobias, negative thoughts and suppressed emotions to be overcome. As the body is released from conscious control during the relaxed trance-like state of hypnosis, breathing becomes slower and deeper, the pulse rate drops and the metabolic rate falls. Similar changes along nervous pathways and hormonal channels enable the sensation of pain to become less acute, and the awareness of unpleasant symptoms, such as nausea or indigestion, to be alleviated.
How can it lower your blood pressure?
Hypnosis can actually lower blood pressure a number of ways. If you are unable to lose weight, stop smoking, or manage your anger, hypnosis has been proven to help people with these problems. If you tackle these problems this will vastly increase your chances of lowering your blood pressure.
Hypnotherapy is usually considered an aid to psychotherapy (counseling), rather than a treatment in itself. It helps with psychotherapy because the hypnotic state allows people to enter a deep state of relaxation that can better allow them to explore painful thoughts, feelings, and memories they might have hidden from their conscious minds. In addition, hypnosis enables people to perceive some things differently, such as blocking an awareness of pain.
There are many areas in life that hypnotherapy can help people with as we have seen. Does it help lower blood pressure? Indirectly I would have to say yes. By helping people overcome areas in their life that increase their risk for high blood pressure, it does help lower high blood pressure.
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