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Self-Hypnosis Could Be a Valuable Tool for Managing IBS Symptoms

Updated on August 13, 2016

Stress Usually Exacerbates Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and Self-Hypnosis Can Help You Reduce Stress Levels

You might not believe in hypnosis. However, anything that promotes relaxation will help relieve stress-related gastrointestinal spasms. Over time, you can actually teach yourself to relax. I have personally found that when I am tense and worried, I can calm myself enough over one or two minutes to reduce my systolic blood pressure by over 20 points.

(c) Copyright Kathy Steinemann

Several recent studies have shown that hypnotherapy improves symptoms in up to 80 percent of IBS patients, with positive effects lasting up to five years after therapy has been completed.

During the trance state, pain and stress are reduced, leading to a digestive tract that performs better. Hypnosis relieves anxiety and depression, breaking the vicious cycle that perpetuates symptoms in many people.

Hypnotherapy involves learning a new response to something. This response replaces the one your body uses right now.

For example, as a child you might have been frightened by a large dog during a violent rainstorm. Now when you hear heavy rain on the roof, you feel afraid but don’t know why.

Your body associated rain with fear during the dog episode.

Hypnosis is a way of unlearning the incorrect response.

You might not be able to reduce the stress in your life. However, you can change how you react to it. You do things every day in an altered state of consciousness similar to what occurs during hypnosis.

As you brush your teeth, your subconscious mind guides you through the process while you think about something else. And how many times have you driven your vehicle somewhere, daydreaming along the way? You’ve learned to drive, and you do so on a kind of personal autopilot while you focus on other thoughts.

Your subconscious controls bodily functions you never think about, such as breathing, digestion, the circulatory system, and reactions to heat and cold.

You can train your subconscious mind to do things for you and retrain incorrect responses. Then, you can harness the power with your conscious and compel it to act at your bidding.

Hypnosis opens the channel to your subconscious. Believe in yourself and the power of your own mind. You can become the master of your irritable bowel.

IBS self-hypnosis scripts are available on many sites. Search the internet and digital providers like Amazon using keywords such as self-hypnosis for IBS to find a plethora of resources, some of them free.

How to Use Self-Hypnosis Scripts

When listening to recordings, you should try to do so in a quiet, darkened room with minimal chance of disruption from things such as telephones, e-mail alerts, ringing doorbells, or pets.

Relax on a bed or reclining armchair for best results. Make sure your clothing is comfortable. Avoid tight belts, pinching shoes, or uncomfortable brassieres. Empty your bladder and/or bowel, blow your nose, and get rid of any itches before you begin the session. The room should be free of disturbing odors. You must be able to focus on your recording without any discomfort or distractions.

During inhalations, take deep breaths without overfilling your lungs. Emphasize exhalations. They should be longer and slower than inhalations.

Every time you play a script, you should find it easier to reach a hypnotic state. Initially, try to listen to your recording once daily, then decrease the frequency to twice weekly, and finally, to once weekly.

More Information

Are you looking for more information and tips for managing irritable bowel syndrome? Kathy has written two helpful books:

The IBS Compass: Irritable Bowel Syndrome Tips, Information, Fiber Charts, and Recipes. Calibrate your daily compass for health and happiness.

IBS-IBD Fiber Charts: Soluble & Insoluble Fibre Data for over 450 Items, Including Links to Internet Resources. Take a copy with you when you shop, travel, or eat out.

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