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IBS and hypnotherapy

posted Dec 12, 2015, 2:58 PM by Maggie Maylin

Gulia Enders in talking about IBS in her book "Gut" states:  "So far very few treatments have been scientitifically proven to be effective. One of those is hypnotherapy ....Hypnotherapy has been shown to be effective in treating patients with irritable bowel syndrome, reducing their reliance on medication - in some cases to zero.

Uses of hypnosis in the treatment of PTSD

posted Mar 31, 2014, 12:40 AM by Maggie Maylin

The following is an abstract taken from

J Clin Psychiatry. 1990 Oct;51 Suppl:39-43; discussion 44-6.

New uses of hypnosis in the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder.


Hypnosis is associated with the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for two reasons: (1) the similarity between hypnotic phenomena and the symptoms of PTSD, and (2) the utility of hypnosis as a tool in treatment. Physical trauma produces a sudden discontinuity in cognitive and emotional experience that often persists after the trauma is over. This results in symptoms such as psychogenic amnesia, intrusive reliving of the event as if it were recurring, numbing of responsiveness, and hypersensitivity to stimuli. Two studies have shown that Vietnam veterans with PTSD have higher than normal hypnotizability scores on standardized tests. Likewise, a history of physical abuse in childhood has been shown to be strongly associated with dissociative symptoms later in life. Furthermore, dissociative symptoms during and soon after traumatic experience predict later PTSD. Formal hypnotic procedures are especially helpful because this population is highly hypnotizable. Hypnosis provides controlled access to memories that may otherwise be kept out of consciousness. New uses of hypnosis in the psychotherapy of PTSD victims involve coupling access to the dissociated traumatic memories with positive restructuring of those memories. Hypnosis can be used to help patients face and bear a traumatic experience by embedding it in a new context, acknowledging helplessness during the event, and yet linking that experience with remoralizing memories such as efforts at self-protection, shared affection with friends who were killed, or the ability to control the environment at other times. In this way, hypnosis can be used to provide controlled access to memories that are then placed into a broader perspective.

Benefits of Hypnotherapy in recovery from 'life events'

posted Feb 6, 2013, 4:41 PM by Maggie Maylin   [ updated Feb 6, 2013, 4:45 PM ]

Radio National recently aired a program on the benefits of Hypnotherapy and the support it is able to provide in aiding the recovery from life events such as the effects of bush fires or floods.  Listen to the story of Ann Fogarty and how hypnotherapy has helped with her recovery from the Ash Wednesday bushfires by clicking on the link below:

It is 30 years this month since the Ash Wednesday bushfires. On 16 February 1983, 180 fires destroyed hundreds of properties in Victoria and South Australia and 75 people lost their lives.

And long after the scars leave the landscape after a bushfire, physical and emotional scars continue to reshape the lives of people injured in the fires. Forged with Flames is Ann Fogarty's memoir of that day.

On Ash Wednesday, Ann was hit by a ball of fire and 85 per cent of her body was burnt. For several months she hovered between life and death.

Mesothelioma Cancer

posted Jul 8, 2012, 5:25 PM by Maggie Maylin

In June 2997 Paul Kraus was diagnosed with Mesothelioma.  If you or a family member have been diagnosed with this illness, this website by Paul Kraus may be worth looking at.  He was diagnosed with Mesothelioma in  June 1997 and given only a few months to live. He and his family were stunned by the shocking diagnosis, but they were not ready to give up. They researched different therapies for this cancer and learned about chemotherapy, surgery, radiation and various complementary and alternative treatments. From this knowledge, Mr. Kraus worked with his doctors to create his own regimen to heal his mesothelioma and fifteen years later he is alive and enjoys a good quality of life.

Free Copies!

For a limited time, free copies of "Surviving Mesothelioma" are available to newly diagnosed mesothelioma patients. To obtain a free copy go to

An Interesting definition of Hypnotherapy

posted May 30, 2012, 6:40 PM by Maggie Maylin

"At the neurobiological level, the aim of all psychotherapy is to alter connections in the brain so that real or imagined stimuli no longer evoke the stress response"
From neuroscience:  Ex;poring the Brain by Mark F Bear, Barry W Connors, Michael A. Paradiso.

Stress Reduction

posted May 11, 2012, 6:26 PM by Maggie Maylin

If you are interested in how to reduce stress in your life, click on this link for a Stress Reduction booklet produced by the Macquarie Institute.  It provides some great information and worthwhile tips.

Hypnotherapy Information Sessions for 2012

posted Apr 24, 2012, 5:51 PM by Maggie Maylin

Following on from previous successful hypnotherapy information sessions, I am planning another session to take place soon.  If you would like to take part and discover what hypnotherapy is, how it works and if it could be of benefit to you, please contact me for times and dates.  If you have a topic of particular interest, or a question you would like answered, please let me know and I will include it in the discussions.  

Recommended Reading

posted Apr 4, 2012, 4:07 PM by Maggie Maylin

I have been reading Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain by David Eagleman.  This book falls under the heading of neuropsychology but provides a lot of information relevant to hypnotherapy.  In this easy to read book David Eagleman provides clear explanations of the workings of the subconscious mind, highlighting the fact that, in reality, the conscious mind has little control over the decisions we make.  He describes the conscious mind as the tip of the iceberg, which much of the decision making located in the subconscious mind and draws on a wide range of scientifically based research to support his statements and views.  A great and informative read for anyone who wants to know what's really going on in their head.

Hypnotherapy news and information

posted Oct 14, 2009, 11:16 PM by Maggie Maylin   [ updated Jan 15, 2012, 3:49 PM by Maggie Maylin ]

Brain Research on Hypnosis

The Cognitive Neuroscience of the Hypnotic State

(Catherine Chadwick)

Read more at Suite101: Brain Research on Hypnosis: The Cognitive Neuroscience of the Hypnotic State |

Recent years have seen a renewed interest in the neurology of hypnosis. Improved brain scanning technology has made this possible and has led to fascinating observations.

Research into what happens in the brain when a person is hypnotized has led to three main areas of focus.

The Brain in Neutral Hypnosis

According to Dr. David Oakley and Dr. Peter Halligan of University College London and Cardiff University respectively, an important area of research is identification of the neurological changes in the brain when a person is hypnotized, before any hypnotic suggestions are given. They define this state of neutral hypnosis as "a change in baseline mental activity after aninduction procedure and typically experienced at the subjective level as an increase in absorption, focused attention, disattention to extraneous stimuli and a reduction in spontaneous thought."

In their paper titled "Hypnotic Suggestion and Cognitive Neuroscience," they refer to three different studies designed to establish possible neurological differences between a state of no hypnosis and neutral hypnosis. Using PET scanning technology, one study found, in contrast to a state of no hypnosis, co-ordinated activity between several areas of the brain including the brainstem, the anterior cingulate cortex, the right inferior frontal gyrus and the right inferior parietal lobule.

Another study found evidence of brain activity commensurate with a reduction in conceptual spontaneous thought, whilst, using EEG readings, a third also found disruption in normal communication between cognitive systems.

Whilst Oakley and Halligan concluded that more research is needed, they indicate that neurological changes do appear to occur in the neutral hypnotic state. The data points to changes in the way different cognitive systems of the brain communicate in neutral hypnosis and may account for the experience subjects have of mental absorption, reduction in spontaneous thought and sense of detachment.

The Brain and Post Hypnotic Suggestion

In recent years, Dr. Amir Raz of McGill University in Montreal has carried out research to establish what happens in the brain following post hypnotic suggestion. A post hypnotic suggestion is one given to a subject in hypnosis that is intended to be acted upon at a later date. Dr. Raz decided to base his experiment around the Stroop Effect.

The Stroop Effect was defined in the 1930s. The Stroop test involves presenting the subject with words that are the names of colours. However, the word itself is coloured in a different colour to that of its name. Thus, red may be coloured green and blue may be coloured yellow and so on. This test presents conflict for the subject because the act of reading is so ingrained. To see the word 'red' yet be required to report its colour usually leads to errors and slower reaction times.

Raz selected highly hypnotizable subjects according to the Harvard and Stanford scales and a control group of what he called 'resistant' subjects. They were given the post hypnotic suggestion that when they entered a brain scanner and heard his voice some days later, the words they saw before them would appear as nonsense and they were only to report on the colours of the words.

After carrying out the experiment, Raz reported that those he had identified as highly hypnotizable did indeed see the words as scrambled and reported the colours without hesitation. Those subjects identified as "resistant" saw the words as they were written and exhibited the Stroop Effect.

On comparing brain scans, Raz found that in the first group, the area of the brain responsible for decoding written words was suppressed as was the activity of the anterior cingulate cortex one of whose functions is conflict resolution. This did not occur in the second group.

Hypnosis as a Brain Research Tool

An interesting application of hypnosis is in the study of rare neurological conditions. These include hysterical blindness, hysterical paralysis and visual neglect where the person has awareness of only half their visual field, to name a few. These are conditions that usually only occur in patients with other serious psychological disorders such as schizophrenia which makes them difficult to study.

By inducing the symptoms of these conditions through hypnosis in otherwise healthy subjects, researchers hope to understand what is happening in the brain of the real sufferer. Current data is showing that whilst there are some similarities in brain activity in the real patient and the hypnotized subject, there are also some differences. As a consequence, how useful this research will prove to be remains to be seen.

The Neurological Magnificence of the Human Brain

This area of cognitive neuroscience research into hypnosis is still relatively new but is a fascinating one. No doubt as time goes on, our understanding of the special nature of hypnosis will be elucidated more and more.

Read more at Suite101: Brain Research on Hypnosis: The Cognitive Neuroscience of the Hypnotic State |

Hypnotherapy Information Sessions

posted Oct 14, 2009, 11:11 PM by Maggie Maylin   [ updated Apr 4, 2012, 3:59 PM by Maggie Maylin ]

I will soon be conducting regular information sessions about Hypnotherapy, how it works and what it can and do.  If you are interested in a particular topic and would like to attend one of these sessions, please contact me and I will let provide details of the next information session.

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