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Question
Posted by: psychologist hypnotherapy | 2007/12/09

psychologist hypnotherapy

What exactly does a psychologist dealing in hypnotherapy / psychoanalysis do?
Can you recommend one in the Joburg North area?
I think I'm depressed due to suppressed childhood problems.

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Our expert says:
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No. I VERY STRONGLY do NOT recommend any form of hypnotherapy or psychoanalysis for any form of depression, and specially not for the form you describe. Psychoanalysis is worthless, highly expensive, takes forever, and there isn't a single shred of good scientific / research evidence that it is useful in treating ANTHING at all. And while hypnosis can be used occasionally by a skilled shrink as PART of the plan for treating various conditions, on its own it is NOT the treatment recommended by ANY neutral and expert body for treating Depression or much else.
As Maria says, hypnos has a very high risk of inducing false memories of events that actually never happened, to compound your real problems, Any competent GENERAL psychotherapist or counsellor, especially one using CBT ( Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy ) methods, for which there's piles of good evidence that it works and has lasting benefits and doesn't take forever, should be able to really help you. And, excellently, CBT develops your own skills and strengths to handle this and any later crisis in life, rather than making you dependent on the therapist as such

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Our users say:
Posted by: HomoeoPsych | 2007/12/11

Hi psychologist hypnotherapy

Please permit me a brief diversion before I answer your actual question - which CS has completely failed to do.

When considering CS's answer, please consider his absolute fanatical aversion to ANY form of intervention that does not include either psychiatric drugs or CBT. Whilst it is perfectly true that these interventions can be very effective, the reality is that many people derive great value from other intervention methods - such as the psychodynamic approaches you have referred to. Because CS does not approve of such alternative interventions, he simply denies any research indicating that this could possibly be the case!

For example, one of the leading & most widely used psychiatric textbooks (Kaplan & Sadock's Synopsis of Psychiatry, 9th Edition, 2003, pg 561) states the following "In a randomized controlled trial comparing psychodynamic therapy with cognitive behavior therapy, the outcomes of the depressed patients in the study showed no differences between the two treatments."

It is therefore simply not true that there is no research that indicates that psychoanalytic approaches are ineffective in treating depression - CS just denies this in favour of his chosen methods (please note that CS NEVER cites the research he refers to in his answers, apparently preferring to rely on the good old tried & trusted "I say so, therefore it must be true")

Now, to get to your actual question:

A psychologist specializing in analytical hyonotherapy utilyses the unique phenomena developed in the hypnotic state (which are difficult or impossible to access out of hypnosis) to explore early experiences with two specific intentions: Firstly to release internalized & repressed emotions that might be reflected in present emotional states, and secondly - and more importantly - to uncovering & explore the emotional-instinctive belief systems that were developed during those experiences in order to allow you to cope & ultimately to survive. These belief systems tend to have an ongoing effect on functioning and are usually either outdated & no longer relevant, or else were the result of misunderstandings & incomplete information at the time.

Re-evaluating or reframing these underlying belief systems can often result in profound changes in the present - far more effectively than any superficial CBT intervention can ever hope to offer.

Finally, CS is firmly stuck in the very distant past as far as his knowledge of modern clinical hypnotherapy is concerned. The form of hypnotherapy he seems to refer to in his answers has not been used by any serious psychologist using hypnotherapeutic interventions since the 50's! Modern Hypnoanalysis is certainly not the long, tedious & drawn out process he & Maria refer to. Results can often be achieve very rapidly - one of the most significant benefits of hyopnotherapy is that it often expedites the therapeutic process & reduces the number of sessions required to resolve issues.

Go well

Reply to HomoeoPsych
Posted by: Maria | 2007/12/10

At a guess I would say such a psychologist will spend months, possibly years making you talk about things that may (or may not) have happened long ago. All of this will be rather expensive and is unlikely to make you feel any better. Be careful of hypnosis - it can come up with false memories.

Why don't you rather see someone who can help you with the issues you have here and now. E.g. let's say you were sexually molested as a child and as a result you now cannot stand it when a man touches you. A hypnotist/psychoanalyst will probably think it very important to remember and talk about every single little detail of what happened and how it made you feel. A different kind of therapist (preferably CBT, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) might rather deal with teaching you how to interpret people's intentions, so that you can realise not all touch is sexual, it is often just warm and friendly. Such a therapist can help you examine the assumptions you make about men, and use logic and reasoning to sort out whether or not your assumptions are accurate and realistic.

You can ask the Depression and Anxiety Group helpline:
8am-8pm (011) 783 1474/6 or your doctor for referral to a suitable therapist.

Reply to Maria

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