Posted by: eindlich | 2005/11/28


Do you think hypnosis will help for many years of alcohol abuse as it seems nothing else help.

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No. Far too many people get led into the idea that hypnosis is some magic form of treatment that can work wonders --- it never ever can do so. Only very occasionally, as PART of a number of coordinated treatments, can it be helpful as PART of a solution. Nothing whatever helps an alcoholic unless they themselves sincerely want to stop drinking. Then usually, they need a combination of AA, a good shrink, and maybe some drugs which can help, like Acamprosate or Antabuse.
HomeoPsych I disagree with, as pleading a special cause. Note even the most favourable quote he could find says "with variable degrees of success", and I don't believe that in ANY of the studies that pro-hypnosis author is thinking of, was it used successfully as the sole means of treatment or as a single last-ditch method of choice.
On the other hand I agree completely with Homeopsych that it should only be used as m=part of a comprehensive multimodal treatment programme, and that one should NEVER EVER seek hypnosis as therapy except as part of therapy conducted by a fully trained and registered psychiatrist or clinical psychologist, and NEVER from others who have taken it up as a hobby.

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Posted by: HomoeoPsych | 2005/11/28

Kaplan & Sadock's "Synopsis of Psychiatry" (Ninth Edition 2003) - the psychiatric "bible" - states as follows:
"Hypnosis has been used, with various degrees of success, to control obesity and substance-related disorders such as alcohol abuse and nicotine dependance".

The answer according to the most current psychiatric literature, is with some degree of success, yes, hypnosis can help. There are, however, two provisos:

Firstly, treating any form of abuse is a difficult & complex therapeutic process. It is therefore of critical importance to see an appropriately trained psychologist or medical practitioner, who is also trained in the use of clinical hypnosis. There are, very unfortunately, many lay "hypnotherapists" out there who have only a rudimentary knowledge of hypnotherapy, and no knowledge at all of psychopathology & psychotherapeutic processes.

Secondly, if you are looking for a magic wand, forget it. Hypnotherapy is as arduous & challenging, and requires as much commitment as any other psychotherapy. It is, however true that hypnosis can - in some cases & with some patients - achieve results that other therapeutic approaches do not, in that specific patient. This is simply because no one therapeutic approach is equally appropriate to all persons, for all conditions, at all times. It is simply a fact that some patients respond very well to one approach & not at all to another, whilst other patients respond diametricaly visa versa - a case of different strokes for different folks.

Treatment of alcoholism is best tackled in a multi disciplinary manner. You would be well advised to undergo rehab prior to any therapy - any therapy is likely to be more successful if you are "dry" during therapy.

Good luck!

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