Lack of sleep is a very serious problem that has the potential to be fatal if left untreated. Of course, I’m not talking about a couple of restless nights, something which is more likely to have you feeling a bit irritated in the daytime and less productive than usual, I’m talking about real, long lasting sleep issues.
Not getting enough sleep has been linked to an increase in likelihood of getting a whole range of illnesses including heart disease, Alzheimer’s, cancer and others. It also affects your daily life, making normal tasks more and more difficult, causing weight gain and affecting mental health. When such a serious thing is at stake, you have to be doing everything you can to solve your problems with it. That’s where sleep hypnosis comes in. So, let’s take a look at what it’s meant to do for you and whether it can actually do it.
What Is Sleep Hypnosis?
Sleep hypnosis is usually the port of call turned to by people who are really desperate in trying to solve their sleep problem. Whether or not this is the right attitude is up for debate. After you’ve looked into all of the sleeping pills you can safely take without risking addiction, and home remedies like a hot drink or shower before bed each night, and found no success, that’s when people typically turn to sleep hypnosis for help. In fact, it’s a pretty good primary option, but something about it makes people consider it a bit unusual.
Simply put, sleep hypnosis is a way to get to sleep. Usually it involves listening to verbal cues that have been used by a clinical hypnotherapist that guide you into a hypnotic state by using what is commonly referred to as suggestion. The verbal guide will be intentionally relaxing and will often try and get the subject to focus on certain relaxing imagery. Though the initial hypnosis would be carried out in a sleep clinic, there’s always the potential to repeat things at home using a tape, so that you can always have it with you.
Does It Work?
Hypnosis in general is one of those very soft sciences. It’s founded in some principles that hold true with the human mind and all of the neurological study that has been carried out since its inception thousands of years ago. Essentially, its effective prescription comes down entirely to an individual basis.
Some people, people that would be considered highly ‘suggestible’ will find that hypnosis works like an absolute charm for them. Suggestibility is linked to a lot of different things relating to character, age, overall mentality, but it is primarily about whether or not the person undergoing the hypnosis is mentally trusting in the process.
So, as is clear, one of the biggest problems with sleep hypnosis is that you have to believe it to see it, a line of logic that the more scientific or skeptical among us would reject outright. But it has proven effects on some people, so if you are willing to suspend our disbelief, you might find yourself floored by just how incredibly effective it really is.
PROs of Hypnosis
- Wide Range
The reported range of medical conditions that hypnosis can have an effect on is astonishing. For sleep disorders, hypnosis can directly help those with insomnia, people who have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, and even sleepwalkers. Sleep hypnosis techniques involve verbal cues and suggestion to generate a trance like state which can make it easier to fall asleep and remain asleep.
Hypnosis has been shown to increase the quality of sleep and reduce a number of parasomnias including night terrors. Additionally, sleepwalkers can benefit in a number of ways. Not only can hypnosis help by reducing the sleep disturbances or cues that cause sleep walking, sleepwalkers can also be trained to wake up once their feet touches the floor.
Hypnosis may also be able to have a positive effect by targeting indirect causes of sleep disorders. Lost sleep is commonly due to external factors such as anxiety, stress or pain.
Hypnosis is commonly and successfully used to ease anxiety and stress as well as showing a reduction in acute and chronic pain. Patients can benefit from a combined use of hypnosis that targets both the direct issue of sleep deprivation as well as potential contributing factors.
Hypnosis is generally considered a safe method of treatment and has been approved by the American Medical Association. There can be risks involved for individuals with psychosis but for the majority of people, hypnosis is harmless practice.
The most endearing qualities of hypnosis are that it is both non-invasive and medicine free. Hypnosis requires no additional expenditure on medicines and patients are also free from potential drug side effects. There is also no risk of any physical harm or procedural or anesthetic errors.
Hypnosis in the TV and film industry creates an image of a suspicious ‘professional’ who has the ability to rummage around in the mind and put people under their control at will. This is an inaccurate perception; however, human memory is unreliable, and it is possible to plant false memories under hypnosis. When researching for a hypnotist practitioner, it is important to choose someone trustworthy.
There is no official licensing for the practice of hypnosis so the ideal hypnotist will have an academic degree and further qualifications in a related subject such as medicine or psychology.
CONs of Hypnosis
- Not for Everyone
Unfortunately, not everyone is susceptible to hypnosis and some may be simply unable to enter a trance like state that is deep enough for hypnosis to work effectively. Currently, there is no direct way of knowing how susceptible a person is to hypnosis before attempting the treatment except by using a series of tests and brain scans to analyze the activity in certain parts of the brain.
Naturally, this technology is unavailable for people to access during a hypnosis consultation and otherwise, research to date has found no link between susceptibility and type of personality traits or demographic details. Additionally, people that may be susceptible to hypnosis can be sabotaged by their own mind as anxiety and over-thinking can prevent the trance like state from taking hold.
Hypnosis is not currently a treatment that is funded by government. Nor will it be covered by insurance policies. Therefore, those that wish to try hypnosis will have to pay for the cost themselves. Costs can vary but are similar in price to traditional types of therapy. Additionally, patients will have to pay for the session they receive, regardless of whether they turn out to be susceptible to hypnosis or not and without guarantee of success. Another aspect to consider is that there is no set number of sessions that will cure the sleep disorder as each individual will respond differently. Needing multiple sessions may raise the price significantly.
For some people, hypnosis has the potential to effectively rid them of whatever sleep disorder has been plaguing them. As stated earlier, it’s often people’s last port of call, when the medical and home remedies have all failed. In reality, it should be used alongside your other experiments, given how convenient it is.
Hopefully, you’ve read this article and are feeling much more positive about giving sleep hypnosis a go as a possible solution to your sleep issues. If you’re not feeling like that and you think it sounds unrealistic, the good thing is that it probably wouldn’t have worked for you anyway!
Author’s Bio: Beatrix Potter is a psychologist and writer at Paper Writing Service. She enjoys guiding people down their life path and helping them overcome their issue.