Safe? Not Safe?
In a recent article in the Journal of Child Development it was suggested that children's use of a mobile phone during the nighttime can lead to increased risk of anxiety and depression (1).
There are some obvious differences between the childhoods of the younger generations, and generations born in the 80s. When I was younger there was no such thing as a mobile phone - you saw them occasionally in brief cases that housed the battery.
Mobile gaming came out in the late 80s (2) and they were basic monochrome games. Even games consoles were totally different with the NES (I used to love Duck Hunt), the Sinclair Spectrum, and the Mega Drive.
The world of mobile gaming that the children of today experience and expect was not even really imaginable when I was a child. The thought of having a mobile phone would never have crossed my mind. I did actually get my first mobile phone when I was 16 - an Ericsson GA628 and I loved that phone. Not sure it had SMS though as it was a feature not yet introduced.
Anyway, it is quite difficult for modern parents to fully comprehend the lives of a modern child as the things that are now available were not even featuring in our childhood dreams.
If we ditch the mobile phones and other devices, then we risk throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Research presented at the 2016 World Congress of Anaesthethesiorogists suggested that children that play on an iPad before surgery experience lower anxieties and thus experience a better anaesthetic induction (3). This suggests that mobile devices do have some benefit for children. Mobile devices are also increasingly used as tools to deliver psychological interventions and engage children in therapy. There are many benefits to be had, yet they have a place within life - they are not the be-all of life.
One of the reasons why iPad use reduces anxieties before an operation is due to the child being distracted from a potentially scary event - being cut open! Distraction from unpleasantness can be functional as a behaviour, yet if used too often can become dysfunctional. In the same way that alcohol can be a functional way to reduce stress, yet persistent use can become dysfunctional - it can become an addiction without you even realising. Children are not the only ones at risk of addiction to smart devices, adults are severely prone to it too. I am sure we have all seen groups of people in a restaurant, heads down on their mobile phones all night, no interaction with the human friends and family around them. An article in the Journal of Cyberpsychology, Behaviour, and Social Networking found that parents who themselves have addictive patterns with smartphones are less likely to perceive their children's addictions as problematic and also less likely to be a good role model for their children (4). The Journal of Child Development suggests that parental use of technology has a negative impact on child behaviour (5.). Some seem to believe this new connected world keeps us connected with friends and family yet another recent study suggests that is not necessarily the case, with the compulsive use of mobile phones being related to lesser feelings of connection to friends and family (6).
It is important that technology is incorporated into life, yet doesn't take over life completely. Face-to-face social interactions, outdoor playtime, technology-free family time (such as board games), reading, physical exercise, and conversations all play a vital role to child and adult development. Having a full and varied life increases the chances of intellectual development, and a fit and healthy child (7). I would suggest, as I would with any adult suffering with anxiety and insomnia, that tech gets switched off 30-60 minutes before bedtime so you can settle down with a book - allowing the brain to start preparing for sleep.
If you speak to the majority of my clients that have experienced hypnosis within my sessions the answer would be a resounding
Even clients who have thought during the session that the hypnosis element was a total waste of time, have the following week(s) contacted me to state how many changes they keep noticing.
The funny thing is, I am bound to say this. I do back up these statements with the occasional testimonial/review from clients, and now I shall do similarly with a little science. I'm a scientist and an evidence-based practitioner so it makes perfect sense for me to demonstrate that.
The British Psychological Society
Hypnosis is a valid subject for scientific study and research and a proven therapeutic medium.
The use of the word 'proven' is an unusual one as many people debate the notion that anything can be proven - only that it can be demonstrated to be effective at that particular time, and place.
In a balanced review of the literature, the BPS explore hypnosis and discuss what it has shown to be effective in, and what it has not.
What they declare hypnotic interventions are effective for include:
I have been successfully using hypnosis to help people with chronic pain, stress, anxiety, and IBS for the past two years and love seeing the relief in the clients' faces when they experience relief for the first time in a long time.
The BPS also state that it's likely that both children and adults can benefit from hypnotherapeutic interventions.
This is a 2001 article from the BPS and hypnosis has come on leaps and bounds since then.
The American Psychological Association
In this 2011 article the author talks about how stage and tv hypnotists have damaged the reputation of the professional hypnotherapist. I do think to some extent this is true, and as a psychologist I do find myself defending the method to my clients, explaining what hypnosis is, and what it is not.
The article discusses how hypnosis can be used to help cancer patients recover post-operatively by experiencing less pain, nausea, fatigue, and discomfort, requiring less analgesia (pain relief). There was a net financial saving post-operatively compared to those who did not undergo the brief pre-operative hypnotic intervention.
Whilst the evidence for the treatment of pain, anxiety, etc is strong, the article discusses how the evidence for smoking is not quite so strong. I suspect this is due to the nature of the beast - smokers sometimes like smoking. The smokers I accept into my clinic room prove to me that they are determined to succeed - that they really want to become non-smokers. I do not see many for stop-smoking work yet when I do they are successful.
Hypnosis Can Resolve Issues Faster
A study (originating from 1970) published in the American Health Magazine in 2006 found that people tend to deem hypnosis as a last resort for changing habits, resolving anxieties, stopping smoking, etc. Yet the study demonstrated that people experience a 38% recovery after 600 sessions of psychoanalysis (the freudian approach to psychotherapy that often involves 2-3 sessions per week - an expensive luxury). People tend to experience a 72% recovery following 22 sessions of behaviour therapy. And people tend to experience a 93% recovery after just 6 sessions of hypnotherapy. This is quite staggering.
As a psychologist trained in various behavioural therapies, hypnotherapy, and solution-focused therapies, I tend to bespoke my approach to the client and as the hypnotherapy component can occasionally last just 10-15 minutes, I combine behavioural therapies into sessions and increase efficacy significantly. Some extremely serious conditions have been resolved in just 2-3 sessions. There are some people with whom issues take longer to resolve - yet it is not uncommon for 6 sessions to be the most someone would need.
To back this up, the Washington Post reported on a German Meta-Analysis of 444 studies concluding a 64% success rate for hypnotherapy with Anxiety, Stress, and Chronic Pain.
Hypnotherapy is an effective therapeutic tool to help people recover from a wide array of issues, including chronic pain, IBS, anxiety, stress, and many other issues. The key is to choose a good hypnotherapist or therapist - one that you know will help you on the recovery journey.
All of the above are life-limiting conditions. Not in the sense that they shorten life, but in the sense that they diminish the quality of life to such a degree that people stop living.
They're all in the mind?
There are some who believe that Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia are psychological conditions, as they are often diagnosis by elimination. This can be quite hurtful to those experiencing the conditions as they do impact lives severely and the experience is very real.
There are now theories that fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue are the result of a form of trauma on the body, either an illness or some other event, where the body starts to shut down to protect itself from further harm.
Pain - is it real? Why do we have it?
Is pain a real thing? In a way yes, in a way, no. Pain is an interpretation of a signal from our body. It has a purpose on occasions when we are injured to send a warning to the brain that action needs to be taken to prevent further injury or death.
Where it comes to chronic conditions such as chronic pain, chronic fatigue, and fibromyalgia, the pain is neither useful nor necessary for survival. Therefore there are psychological components as the brain is misinterpreting signals to give warnings that are unnecessary.
Can anything help?
I have now been using a blend of hypnotherapy and psychotherapy to help people with Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, and Chronic pain to get relief for over 2 years. These can be challenging issues to work with, yet when you see someone regaining their life the levels of satisfaction are huge!
Working on issues like these requires a team effort. Some will insist on a multi-disciplinary team, with nurses, medications, psychologists, physiotherapists, etc. I think these are beneficial, although the evidence for the effectiveness of medications is poor.
As a private psychologist my services are often covered by major insurance companies. I work with you to help you resume your life - life has been paused for too long with many of these conditions. It is a joint effort. I bespoke my methods to fit your needs in any session and use a pragmatic approach.
You can recover from these conditions. You can still live a life with these conditions. If you want to make changes today and start moving forward, make an appointment today.
Today marks the end of IBS awareness month and in reality I have not seen anything online raising the awareness of IBS.
I help clients internationally, in Guernsey in my clinic, as well as across the world via Skype, to manage their IBS and regain 'control' of their life. IBS can be a debilitating condition that results in people becoming fearful of what may happen should their guts flare up whilst out and about.
IBS impacts around 10-20% of the public, with a higher proportion of females being affected - or at least reporting being affected. And age of onset is likely to be prior to the age of 50 - it is very unusual that someone experiences their first symptoms of IBS post-50.
IBS Symptoms can result in a massive life-disruption, with IBS increasing the likelihood of absenteeism from work, missing out on social occasions, and concentration levels (source).
As IBS impacts the lifestyle of the indivudual significantly it is not uncommon for someone with IBS to experience depression and anxiety.
It is very important to ensure you do have a proper diagnosis prior to seeking support for IBS as whilst there is no specific test for IBS, the symptoms can be mistaken for conditions that need medical intervention. When clients present to me for IBS I always ensure they have had other conditions ruled out by their GP and preferably a gastric surgeon.
What I find, with many of my clients, is that the IBS symptoms are intertwined with a bundle of other emotions, fears, concerns. These physiologically exacerbate the IBS symptoms - it becomes a viscous cycle. Many clients have reported that when they do take a leap of faith and have a holiday, their symptoms disappear! This demonstrates the power of the mind-gut connection. When the mind is calm, the body calms too.
The work I do with people with IBS is evolving. Historically I have used the accepted protocols - the Manchester Protocol and the North Carolina Protocol for IBS. Both of these have fantastic efficacy rates, and resulted in Hypnosis being deemed an effective treatment for treatment-resistant IBS by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence.
My evolving approach takes some of the best-practice from these methods, which are now 15-20 years old, and brings them up to date. De-scripting the entire process and working with what the individual brings into the session on the day. This approach is getting positive feedback already and my aim is to reduce treatment time, making it more affordable and more rapid. This approach is still in development, yet is looking at being an extremely effective option for people wanting to regain control of their life by regaining control of their bowels.
I am currently offering a 4-session IBS programme to help clients regain control of their gut, to help ditch the anxieties, and live an easier life. These methods are based on my experience of working with clients internationally, as well as the latest evidence-base. If you are interested in increasing your comfort and reducing pain from IBS then make your appointment today.
What is a phobia?
Many think that fear and phobia are the same thing. The definition of a phobia is an extreme or irrational fear or aversion to something (ref).
I would go further than this. A fear is a dislike of something. You can dislike flying yet still find yourself on a plane in an emergency. With a phobia, nothing will get you onto that plane! Except maybe a tranquilliser. Many will recall Mr T in the A-Team frequently being knocked out with novocaine to get him on that plane.
What can YOU do about YOUR phobias?
We have established that phobias are common, and most with a phobia will acknowledge they are irrational. If they're rational then they aren't a phobia - they are there to save your life.
It is common for benzodiazepines to be prescribed, or beta blockers, to deal with the anxiety arising in a phobia. These don't solve the problem, they delay the resolution.
Also historically psychotherapeutic methods have been used, most include a form of exposure therapy. This is the path many will go down, and it can be very effective. I use some of these methods myself when clients request it. This type of work can typically take 6-10 sessions.
The new approaches include modern brain-based psychotherapies and rapid forms of hypnotherapy. It is not uncommon now for someone's phobia to be gone in a matter of minutes.
In the past I have helped clients that have had issues with spiders, flying, etc, and many months later they are still reporting the massive benefits to their life.
If you have a phobia that is getting in the way of living, book an appointment to see me, now.
The title of this blog post is a phrase I hear all the time.
As a psychologist, hypnosis is a tool I use to deliver my interventions. I don't always use hypnosis, and I do give clients a choice. There is a massive benefit to hypnosis.- it helps the clients to make profound changes, sometimes in as little as 10 minutes.
When I first mention the use of hypnosis to clients they will often say to me 'I don't think I can be hypnotised' or 'well, I went to x and I am not sure I was hypnotised'. There is a perception that hypnosis (a word derived from the greek 'hypnos', meaning 'to sleep') means a deep sleep, or even a coma, where the client has no awareness throughout the process. And maybe in some instances this is almost true (the Esdaile state, also known as a hypnotic coma), yet the majority of hypnotists/hypnotherapists (or whatever they want to call themselves) will not use these levels of depth.
What will I hear in Hypnosis?
During hypnosis it is very common to hear every single word the hypnotherapist/hypnotist utters. It is even more common if it is your first session with them as people tend to have a sense of curiosity. The more you allow yourself to relax into it and get guided along on the experience, the deeper you will go, and potentially have a stronger sense of amnesia.
Hypnotherapists aren't bothered what your conscious mind can and cannot hear though as we're not communicating with that part of you!
What will I feel in Hypnosis?
That is an amazing question, and ultimately whatever your experience, it is the right one for you. Some people do report a sense of heaviness, as though their entire body is made of lead. It can also feel as though the body has vanished and your head is floating around above your shoulders.
Others report a sense of lightness. Sometimes that lightness is suggested, or appears after the problem has been removed or resolved.
Hypnosis isn't relaxotherapy, sometimes you may feel relaxed, sometimes you may not. I can do long relaxing sessions, and it can be a wonderfully indulgent treat, just like a psychological massage. Often the fast work is more therapeutic.
So, What is Hypnosis?
I could give standardised definitions:
The Mayo Clinic defines hypnosis as a 'trance-like state in which you have heightened focus'.
The American Psychological Association state that hypnosis is a powerful and effective technique for dealing with a wide range of issues such as pain, anxieties, and mood. And for dealing with behavioural issues such as smoking.
Both of these are fairly accurate. I always explain to my clients that hypnosis is a state of deep focus and is one that you have experienced in the past. When engrossed in a good book, movie, or box-set on Netflix, you are in an altered state of consciousness where your imagination is extremely powerful. A great book is the best example, where you are so involved with the characters and story, and can envisage the entire story as though it were a film playing out in your mind.
Does the unconscious or subconscious mind exist? Who knows. What I do know is that there is a part of us always listening in an unconscious manner.
That part of you that hears your name mentioned across the room when you're at a party. That part of you that wakes when it hears a baby, or puppy, murmur.
That part of you that continues searching for the name of 'that song' when your conscious mind has given up, then throws it into your conscious awareness hours later and you get that 'ah yes' moment.
It is this part that we communicate with in hypnosis. The part of you that has the power to work away in the background making real changes. I have seen the true power playing out in front of my eyes as I asked the subconscious mind to release any blockages within a client - this resulted in them convulsing as their body released the trapped energies causing negative feelings - these had existed for 30 years!
Look into my EYES.... NOW
Can I be hypnotised?
Everyone can be hypnotised. I have proven that to many in the past that have told me that they cannot be at all. As a hypnotherapist, my job is not actually to hypnotise you. It is to dehypnotise you. Your problematic beliefs, issues, anxieties, etc, are all the result of an event or some faulty programming that's occurred during your life. Similarly with chronic pain - often there is no pain stimulus, just the pain experience. With hypnosis we dehypnotise you from all of this faulty, no longer helpful programming, and you come out feeling absolutely amazing.
I say this with confidence as clients in the past have come in looking forlorn and left my clinic laughing. Feeling lighter, feeling free.
What can hypnosis help with?
Hypnosis in itself is just the tool used to allow the work to be done. I use various methods whilst the client is in hypnosis to help you to make changes.
I will give a brief example of issues that I have dealt with using hypnosis in the past couple of weeks:
Some clients have been burdened with anxieties, traumas, fears, for 30+ years, and found relief in just 20 minutes. Others have been through the state system, coming out with a great understanding of why they feel anxious, yet still burdened by anxiety. 20 minutes into their session with me and that anxiety had dissolved.
Many issues can be dealt with effectively within 1 session, others are layers of issues and require a couple of sessions. Hypnosis speeds up the time it takes to notice real change for many of my clients, helping them to feel lighter, more free, and ready to face the world.
How Can I Experience this?
If you have any anxieties, fears, phobias, or any of the above issues, that are holding you back from living the life you deserve, book an appointment today and start on the journey to change.
Do you want to quit smoking?
Is it costing you too much money?
Do You want freedom from tobacco?
I occasionally, at special request only, work with people who want to become non-smokers. Often the clients have tried many methods, reading books, other hypnotherapists, CDs, nicotine 'replacement', and none have been successful.
For this year's no smoking day I am offering FOUR appointments only. These can be booked directly on my website - book here now: www.rapidchangeclinic.com/book-online
Becoming a non-smoker does not have to take 3 hours!
in January 2016 an article emerged that Adele and Ewan McGregor had visited a hypnotherapist to help them stop smoking. It took them 3 hours sat there listening to him! (article)
For people who are that busy, that's an utter waste of time. The method I use helps you to become a non-smoker in under an hour, often the main work lasts just 15 minutes! No repeat sessions, no wasting time, no waffle. A fast and effective method.
4 places ONLY this no smoking day
For no smoking day I am offering 4 no smoking sessions. As a special I shall be donating 50% of the fee to Les Bourgs Hospice.
Book today and become a non-smoker this year.
It is estimated that 15% of the population have a disability. Some are visible, some invisible/hidden.
In Guernsey there are an estimated 13,000, of which 4000 experience significant difficulties in their daily lives. A large proportion of these will not be outwardly disabled.
What on earth is an invisible disability?
An invisible, or hidden, disability is one that is not overtly apparent to the general public. Maybe if you watch someone closely you will notice them struggling to navigate around a bar, or wincing in pain, yet there's no symbols to tell the world that they have a disability.
One of my specialisms is the stigma of visual impairment, largely because this was one of the topics of my research whilst at University. Another reason I have an interest in visual impairment is because I myself have a degenerative retinal condition that has resulted in my being classified as significantly sight impaired. I rarely use a cane and therefore if I do bump into something or someone many will assume I am clumsy, not looking where I am going, or something else.
From my research into visual impairment I discovered that many VIPs (visually impaired persons) experience stigma and have also experienced negative responses from members of the public, been the victims of abuse and violence, and are cautious about identifying themselves as blind due to the rhetoric towards the disabled as being benefit scroungers. The UN also discusses how those with disabilities are more likely to experience violence than those without.
There is, however, an interesting finding from my research. That was that the visually impaired, whilst they do experience actual stigma and discrimination, their anticipation of experiencing stigma and discrimination is higher than the actual experience. This same phenomena has been found in people with breast cancer too who envisage stigma following a mastectomy to be worse than it really is. In breast cancer this can result in women opting not to have potentially life saving surgery due to the fear of the stigma they will experience afterwards.
Therefore, our own minds are worse than the reality. Many do not allow themselves to experience that reality due to their perceptions of it being worse. Often by stopping our struggles with what our mind is telling us, we can continue with life in spite of the disability that we have.
It can be difficult for members of the public to comprehend hidden disabilities. An example is someone using a white cane/long cane, walks onto a bus or a tube if in London. They find a seat, maybe someone gives their disabled seat or standard seat up for the person. Next thing the person pulls out their iphone, or a book, and starts reading. This looks as though they are faking it. And many have been accused of doing so in the past. The thing is, are they faking it? No. Nobody uses a long cane for fun. A condition like mine, Retinitis Pigmentosa, results in the periphery of my vision deminishing so I have a small area of vision in the centre. I cannot see anyone stood or sat next to me unless I look directly at them. Similarly I cannot see small children in front of me, dogs, and obstacles such as wet floor signs. I can, however, use the little remaining vision I have to read. My condition affects approximately 1 in 4000 people and there are many conditions like it. We don't fit the stereotype of a disabled person as we have some abilities. With visual impairment you can be 'legally blind' yet have some useful vision. It is a difficult thing to get your head around.
What help is there for people with disabilities?
In Guernsey there are not as many avenues of support as in the UK. There's also no financial benefit to having a disability. There's no real financial support available for the disabled in Guernsey.
The Guernsey Disability Alliance has a links page full of member organisations.
I also specialise in helping people to come to terms with their disability and find a way forward with their lives. If you want to find out more, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Not all stress is bad. We'll get that out the way first.
We need an element of stress in our lives to help us to meet deadlines, get through tests and exams, and help to focus us when we need to most. This type of stress is called Eustress. It gives us mild anxiety, sharpens the mind, and helps us get through the challenges life throws at us.
It becomes problematic when it becomes distress - when rather than sharpening our focus, attention, and thoughts, it clouds our judgement. We cannot see past the fog of stress.
Why we get stressed
Stress is a natural part of life. It's one of the key components that helped our species to survive so long.
All animals have the fight, flight, and freeze response. When i scare my rats (not on purpose) they either scarper into a safe space, or they freeze hoping that their not moving will result in me not seeing them. Humans have had to do the same throughout history. If we saw a lion on the savanna preparing to eat us then we would run as fast as we physically could. In times like that our bodies become ultra-efficient to help us to run faster than we usually could - almost becoming superhuman. This is where eustress comes in to action. Our focus sharpens so we recall our terrain and plan our escape in an efficient manner.
The less pleasant aspects of this stress-reaction are that our body shuts down less necessary processes. It shuts down the digestive process, it shuts down the immune system, and it clears out the bowels to make us lighter! (I am sure many people have experienced the need to get to the toilet very quickly when stressed and anxious).
This is marvellous for ensuring the survival of the species. The problem now, as I've probably said many times before, is that modern day stressors are less likely to be lions prowling around. They're more likely to be psychological threats. Losing a job; work stresses; money stresses; family stresses; and many other things that don't physically threaten our lives. When our lives are physically threatened the survival mechanism is useful. Otherwise, we really do not need our hearts to start racing to pump our glycogenated blood around to the legs to ensure the muscles have sufficient energy to power our bodies away from the threat. Maybe you've found your legs 'running' whilst you're sat at your desk at work!?
Stress & Health
)Distress in itself is not a pleasant feeling.
We are all going to experience distress at some point in life. When it is prolonged, when it becomes chronic stress, there are many consequences for our physical health. None of them are good.
As mentioned above, our immune function reduces. You may have experienced this in the past when you have had a cold following a stressful time. I recall that when writing my doctoral thesis I managed to regrow my tonsils just so my body could give me tonsillitis. Something I'd not experienced since having them removed as a child. We can get over colds, and tonsillitis. These are short-term effects. Chronic stress can, however, open the door to much more insidious illnesses such as cancer. This is why stress management is such an important aspect of cancer care as stress can reduce efficacy of cancer treatment.
Persistent stress, due to the strain on the heart, and the increased blood pressure, can result in thickened arteries (atherosclerosis). This is a leading cause of coronary heart disease and stroke.
Furthermore, due to the reduced digestive function, there's an increased risk of stomach ulcers.
The above are the most serious of the potential issues. There are many others such as headaches, lack of concentration, fatigue, muscle pain, dizziness, amongst others.
Ways to manage/deal with stress.
Firstly, you can make an appointment to see someone like me. As a psychologist I use a variety of tools to help people to deal with their stress in new ways. I pride myself in having a versatile toolkit that helps me to achieve great results and use ACT, mindfulness, hypnotherapy, and BWRT. I've helped many people in Guernsey, I have direct referrals from local employers wanting to help their employees through difficult situations, and I've worked with people across the globe via skype.
This option, unfortunately, is not available to all. There is state-funded support yet the waiting list can be 6-10 months long. I believe they are working hard to reduce this and your GP could refer you if necessary.
There are also many self-help tools available and can help you to develop a different relationship with stress - I'll list a few that I know have help people in the past:
Some may try to manage stress through eating chocolate, spooning a whole tub of Haagen Dazs into their mouths, or imbibing alcohol. These things can work wonderfully in the short term. Not always, but sometimes. The issue comes when it's our weight that's a significant contributor to our stress. Or the things we do when we've had a little too much to drink, combined with the fact alcohol is a depressant.
It's important to identify what and who in life is important to you. If it's important that you provide for your family, have a secure home, and live a healthy life then none of the above coping mechanisms will really help to facilitate any of those values. We all fall into those traps occasionally, some fall further than others.
More fruitful ways of dealing with stressors can be things such as painting, or another form of creative expression; exercise (not just the gym, but walking along the coast can have many psychological health benefits, as well as some physical health benefits); socialising with a friend or a loved-one (not necessarily in person. You can call someone, Skype someone, or meet someone; or, you can engage in a mindfulness based activity. These are just a few. As everyone's been stressed before everyone knows things that help reduce the impact of stress on their lives. We just don't always allow us to recognise that fact.
I was having a conversation with a friend of a friend on Facebook the other day and she mentioned her fibromyalgia. As someone who is extremely interested in helping people to deal with chronic pain I thought I'd chip in with some, what I deemed useful, advice. I suggested the seek psychological pain management!
This seemingly offended the friend's friend. She was adamant that she was delighted with her current specialist as they 'knew' that the pain was not in her head.
Now, as an ACT therapist I don't deem it important whether the pain has a physiological cause or not. What is important to me is whether the pain experience is real and whether it is negatively impacting someone's life. After further discussion she finally realised I knew what I was talking about and I had dug myself out of the hole I had inadvertently dug.
It made me realise, or consolidated a realisation, that people have the perspective that as their pain is physical there's no way that seeing a psychologist can help in any way at all. The thing is, many people have thought that way in the past, have seen a psychologist, learnt psychological skills to deal with the pain in a different way, and have reaped the benefits.
Getting back onto irritable bowel syndrome. It's a condition that is very real and can severely impact the quality of life of someone suffering with IBS. As it's a very physical condition with such apparent consequences, how on earth can a psychological intervention help? Well, there's lots of theories but there's one thing I can say for certain. It does help.
I've had two relatively recent testimonials published to my website from people that had exhausted the medical route and wanted to try something new. I use an evidence-based gut-focused hypnotherapy to make significant improvements in the symptoms of IBS. This treatment is recommended by NICE for people that have not improved with medication, and is used within some NHS trusts. It's also used in the USA.
If you live in Guernsey, I can deliver this treatment programme over 7 sessions (6 of which are 30 minutes so half-sessions), face-to-face. If you don't live in Guernsey I also offer online therapies and can deliver IBS treatment online via either Skype, FaceTime, or vSee.
Here's snippets of the testimonials. The full wording can be found on my homepage.
"I contacted Tim because my IBS became so bad that I was willing to try anything. I must say that I was amazed with the effects the therapy had on me within the first session alone! I am very much converted to hypnosis and could not praise Tim enough - thanks to him, my stomach is better than it has been for a long time and I am able to manage my stress much more effectively."
"Each session left me feeling calm and relaxed, but also energised! I often went for a walk afterwards! My IBS attacks have become very much reduced."
I never thought I'd be so passionate about IBS but I've found a treatment that I know can truly help improve peoples' lives, and it has already done so. I'd love to be able to offer this through a States of Guernsey contract so people can get this free of charge but at the present time that does not seem to be an option.
If you're suffering from IBS and want some relief, read the above quotes, read the information, maybe even google to confirm what I am saying is true. Then, once you've thought about it and decided to give it a shot, please contact me.
I'm a doctor of psychology, born in Guernsey, educated at a tertiary level in Bristol, Bath, and London. Having worked and trained with some of the leading Health Psychologists in the UK, and having a passion about how Health Psychology can truly benefit many people, I now want to spread the word, as well as offer consultations to people wanting to make changes in their lives.