Hypnotherapy to Quit Smoking – Is It Even an Option?
It seems like there are a million ways to quit smoking, with some of them working better than others for some people. From patches to pills to counseling programs, there is no limit to the methods you could try to stop smoking.
But even if it worked for someone else, you may not have the same success. You might have to try something more radical. Perhaps you have heard of hypnotherapy being used to help people stop smoking. Maybe you put no stock in such a method or you just aren’t; sure what it involves or if it will work.
Read on to find out more about this smoking cessation method and if it is right for you.
What Is Hypnosis Therapy
Hypnosis therapy is a method of treatment where the patient is put into a trance-like state that is almost like being asleep. They are given suggestions by the hypnotherapist. These suggestions are intended to become subliminal messages. They may not be something that the subject is aware of, but they are there at the fringes of their mind, influencing them and helping them to make specific choices.
Hypnotic suggestions work on the part of the brain that generates automatic thoughts. When you see something, your mind may generate an automatic reaction based on past experiences or deep-rooted tendencies. Those automatic thoughts are directly affected by hypnosis, or at least that is the goal of this type of therapy.
How It Works with Smoking
The basic principle of hypnosis treatment for addiction is to bring those unhealthy thoughts to the surface and to replace them with more positive thoughts that encourage the smoker to cease leaning on something so dangerous to one’s health. Patients may be asked, under hypnosis, to share what they know that the unpleasant outcomes of smoking could be. The idea is to make the patient understand the three critical principles of quitting.
- Smoking poisons the human body
- The body is needed to live
- Protect your body to the extent that you would prefer to live
In many cases, a hypnotherapist will also teach the individual the art of self-hypnosis. This type of therapy can include everything from audio, video and even journaling therapy. There are even hypnosis sessions to quit smoking free online sessions available on YouTube. Check out part one of this smoking cessation video.
When you apply hypnotherapy to quitting smoking, you introduce suggestions that smoking is bad, that it is not something you want to do and that any association with smoking is to be avoided.
The goal is to assign negative thoughts to the notion of smoking and everything related to it. The hypnotherapist will implant a suggestion in your mind telling you that smoking is not something that you are interested in. The therapist will try to connect this notion with anything that is related to smoking- cigarettes, smoke, pipes, etc.
The goal is to make this suggestion pop up every time you see someone smoke or you think about smoking. That way, your mind will be working against the nicotine addiction instead of assisting it.
For hypnotherapy designed to help people quit smoking, the process will usually take several sessions. The initial sessions are used to implant the idea that smoking is harmful and to be avoided. This begins the work and starts to change the perceptions that have taken root in the patient’s mind. Over time, the suggestions will become stronger. This is because the session will become more forceful in driving home the idea that smoking is not something that you want to do and also because the hypnotherapy will begin to work on the brain and change its automatic thoughts.
New associations will be formed, and soon the mind will begin to see smoking in a negative light, regardless of past conceptions.
It Is a Good Choice?
Hypnosis won’t cause you to stop smoking right away. All it really does is to reduce and eventually eliminate your cravings. After repeated sessions, you will no longer feel the need to smoke as often. After that, it becomes quite easy to stop smoking on your own.
But for those wondering if it really works, studies have shown that it is actually one of the most successful ways to stop smoking. Many of the people who have tried it have managed to quit smoking within months, making for a great success rate for the method.
But it is a relatively new way to stop smoking, and that puts it under some scrutiny. Many people are worried about any side effects or if it will really work for them. The fact is that hypnotherapy uses natural processes to create suggestions. No drugs or chemicals are used at all, and most people respond well to it.
Because people’s minds work differently, not everyone will have success with this method. But if you have struggled with other smoking cessation methods in the past, this may just what you are looking for.
It is recommended that I you truly want to stop smoking that you combine a few different cessation methods. Using a patch can reduce your nicotine dependence, making it easier for other smoking cessation practices to work more effectively. And in many cases, all it takes is for a single hypnotherapy session to get people started on the path to eventually quitting.