you might remember everything about being hypnotised or you may not

Does hypnosis work?

The short answer is “yes”.

Don’t stop reading though because there IS more to it than that! I am asked the “does hypnosis work? ” and I also get asked “does hypnosis even exist?” on a regular basis. The answer to those questions is a little longer than a single word.

gastric band hypnosis by paul mckennaPeople usually ask this question because doubt has been sown in their mind. They maybe saw Paul McKenna, Derren Brown or a stage hypnosis show on holiday and saw something happen. There is often disbelief at these examples as they are on TV or maybe the person on stage being hypnotised is a friend of the hypnotist.

Most of us will be able to find a family member, a friend or a friend of a friend who has seen a hypnotherapist and changed behaviour easily. Likewise these same people will probably be able to tell you about a different person who saw a hypnotherapist and didn’t change.

These conflicting stories and a lack of first-hand experience leave people unsure of hypnosis generally because they don’t know who to trust. This situation is further complicated by the fact that hypnosis is not some standardised, one size fits all kind of thing. I could see 50 different people who all want to lose weight or beat a phobia but might need a completely different approach for each one of them.

People are all different, issues are different. Hypnotherapists are different too! As a result it can be like comparing apples and oranges.

There is growing evidence that hypnosis is a real, distinct thing that your brain does. For a while people suspected that those being hypnotised were playing along or making it up. Thanks to MRI scans it has now been proven beyond doubt that hypnosis is a real thing and has a specific and distinct effect. Neurologists and researchers generally are still trying to figure out exactly what the effects mean though!