I suffered from Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) for over 20 years. I’d tried all the recommended medications and advice given by my GP but nothing helped. My GP told me it was just something I’d have to learn to live with. At times I felt it was controlling my life. I’d have to plan ahead. If I was going somewhere new then I needed to check where the toilets were first. If I went to the cinema or theatre I always made sure I was on an end seat so that I could make a quick get away if needed. I was wary of eating out if I was going somewhere other than straight home.
And stressful situations in my life brought on a flare up which would last for days or weeks. I’d be scared to leave the house in case I got caught short. My list could go on here, but I’m pretty sure that by now you can resonate with some if not all of what I’ve written here. So would you like the good news?
You can over come this NOW! Since undergoing hypnotherapy for IBS, I can hand on heart tell you that this no longer affects me! I underwent 5 sessions which ran over a period of a few months. After the first session I had already noticed some differences, by session 3 or 4 I no longer had any symptoms. I honestly can’t tell you what a difference this has made to my life. It’s like the shackles have been taken off. I recently booked tickets and the theatre, and it never even crossed my mind to book an end seat. We were sat right in the middle. I even had an ice cream in the interval, I could never have done that before.
Read on for all the technical stuff!
Hypnotherapy is a recognised treatment for IBS in the UK
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), a UK organisation that provides evidence-based guidelines for the National Health Service (NHS), recognises hypnotherapy as a treatment for managing the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In addition to addressing the physical symptoms of IBS, hypnotherapy can also teach individuals coping strategies to manage stress and emotional upset, which may contribute to IBS flare-ups. During hypnotherapy sessions, individuals may work on changing their perspective on their symptoms, learning techniques to manage their symptoms, reducing avoidance behaviors related to IBS-related fears, and increasing their resilience to stress. The goal of hypnotherapy for IBS is not only to alleviate symptoms but also to provide individuals with tools to better manage their condition.
Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is a disorder that affects the way the digestive system functions. It affects about 20% of the population in the United Kingdom at some point in their lives, with a slightly higher prevalence among women. IBS is often accompanied by mental health conditions such as depression and panic disorder, and individuals with these conditions are more likely to develop IBS as well.
Symptoms of IBS can include:
- Pain or cramping in the stomach that comes and goes
- Bloating and passing wind
- Bouts of diarrhoea or constipation
- Feeling sick (nausea)
- Headaches and other aches and pains
- Poor appetite
Studies into Irritable Bowel Syndrome
***The following has been taken from https://www.everydayhealth.com***
A study published in July 2020 in the Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatologycompared patients with IBS who received either standard care or a multidisciplinary approach that included gut-directed hypnotherapy. Researchers found that 83 percent of the patients in the multidisciplinary group had symptom relief, compared with 63 percent of the standard care group. Patients in the multidisciplinary group were also far more likely to have a significant improvement in symptoms and quality of life than the group that received standard care from a gastroenterologist only.
The growing body of evidence showing just how effective gut-directed hypnotherapy is in relieving IBS symptoms and improving gut function spurred the American College of Gastroenterologists to recommend its practice in its 2021 clinical guidelines. And a review published in January 2022 in Gastroenterology noted that hypnotherapy is not only effective in helping IBS, but it’s flexible — it can be done individually or in a group setting, and it can be done in person or virtually over zoom.
With IBS, the brain misfires, interpreting normal gut sensations as pain. But through the power of hypnotic suggestion and the brain-gut connection, gut-directed hypnotherapy acts on the central nervous system to reduce the sensitivity of nerves in the gut.
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