Common Myths about Hypnosis

    “Hypnosis is a form of mind control and you can make me bark like a dog…I’ll be helpless”

Fact: This misconception is based on media portrayal of hypnosis. The truth is that people, who volunteer to be on stage, allow themselves to participate in and respond to suggestions designed around entertainment. Hypnotherapy, on the other hand, is a serious process of self-improvement.  No one can control your mind, unless you allow him or her to do so. A hypnotherapist gives you suggestions that you want to be given, based on your therapeutic goals and objectives. At no point during hypnosis will you lose control of your mind. If you hear a suggestion that you do not agree with, or do not understand, your subconscious mind will automatically reject it.  If anything, you are in more control as hypnosis a state of hyperawareness and gives you access to both the conscious and subconscious levels of awareness simultaneously.

     “When I am hypnotized, I may get stuck in trance”

Fact: Hypnosis is very safe and natural state of hyper-awareness that we enter and exit during the normal course of a day.  When in the state of hypnosis, our brainwaves move through the Alpha to Theta ranges. Any time you choose to emerge from hypnosis, for any reason, you are able to simply open your eyes and become fully alert. If you were practicing self-hypnosis before going to bed and ended in the Delta state, then it would mean you'd simply fall asleep.

     “Hypnosis is sleep”

Fact: While it may look like sleep, hypnosis is neither sleep nor unconsciousness. Your breathing will slow, eyes closed, muscles relaxed, and activity decreased.  You will be relaxed and alert, able to think, talk, and move if needed. 

     “I have never been in Hypnosis before.”

Fact: Every person naturally enters a state of hypnosis several times each day. These times are just before falling asleep at night, several times during sleep, and upon awaking every morning. Most people easily enter environmental hypnosis while at the movies, watching TV, driving on the highway, or while reading a good book.

     “Hypnosis is a Miracle Cure”

Fact: While hypnosis is a relatively quick method of making permanent improvements, there is no such thing as a one-time hypnosis based miracle. It takes time to change a lifetime habit or thought pattern.  Each individual makes progress at his or her own pace. 

     “I can be made to tell the truth in hypnosis and you will be able to find out my secrets”

Fact: Hypnosis is not a lie detector. It cannot force anyone to “tell the truth,” or to confess.  You are able to lie, edit, and/or remove details while in hypnosis.

“When Hypnotized, I will lose all sense of my surroundings, and will have no memory of being hypnotized”

Fact: Hypnosis is not an unconscious state of sleep. In fact, most people report having a heightened sense of awareness, concentration, focus, and hearing. There are a small number individuals who do not have immediate recall of everything that happened while hypnotized.

     “I cannot be hypnotized because my mind is too strong and or disciplined”

Fact: People are in and out of a state of hypnosis every day, as noted above, as well as during times of environmental, physical, or emotional “overload.”

     “Hypnosis isn’t an effective modality”

Fact: A Comparison Study Shows: “Psychoanalysis: 38% recovery after 600 sessions.
Behavior Therapy: 72% recovery after 22 sessions. Hypnotherapy: 93% recovery after 6 sessions” Source: American Health Magazine Feb 2007