Posted by: BEN | 2007/04/16


Thank you all for your replies and advice! Knowing there are others struggling with the same fear helps a bit. It really annoys me to see the other passengers sitting around calmly enjoying the flight while I'm extremely nervous and anxious, shaking, battling to breathe, heart pounding!

I think I will definately try the CBT therapy, just a Q with that: what type of therapist do I go to for that? Psychologist or psychiatrist? and where can I find one, not so keen on looking one up in the telephone directory? is there a webpage with "accredited" ones or can someone refer one (either for in the South of JHB or Eastgate / Bedfordview area)?

I think I will also discuss the hypnotherapy with my therapist as HomoeoPsych suggested.

I'm willing to try anything, I hate this feeling of fear about flying, here I'm supposed to go on an exciting trip and all I'm focussed on is the flying and how I could get out of it! It really is crippling as Britty says, I can hardly function at all!

Anyway any referals for a therapist would be great!

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Our expert says:
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CBT therapy, most likely to be available from a psychologist, though some psychiatrists do also provide it.
Homeopsych is a total and unbalanced fanatic about hypnosis, who haunts this site like a vulture, waiing to pounce at every opportunity and sell the therapy he responds to almost like a cult ---and I have little interest in further discussions with someone who wishes to follow his advice.

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Posted by: HomoeoPsych | 2007/04/17

Hi Ben

This is really cool! I've NEVER been called a vulture before! Does this mean I'm an endangered species that should be protected, nurtured & valued???

But getting real now. I would like you to please take note of the fact that in numerous previous postings, I have repeatedly acknowledged & affirmed the validity of CBT. I have, however, also repeatedly stressed that many people find great benefit in other approaches, such as hypnosis, analysis, acupuncture, naturopathy, etc.

CS, on the other hand, steadfastly insists that ONLY psychotropic medication (ie drugs) or CBT EVER help ANYONE for ANYTHING. He seems to take it as a personal insult when anyone reports that they have benefitted from any intervention other than the two he approves of. Such reports are derided & reduced to imagination or, at best, the placebo effect. Given this, who is actually the "total & unbalanced fanatic"?

It's as if he is quite happy with the hammer & vice-grip he has in his tool-box, & is therefore not even willing to admit to the possibility of the existence of a screwdriver!

Those of us who are in practice - working with real people with real problems, as opposed to reading journal articles from the rarified heights of academic towers - very quickly come to understand that no one approach ever always works for everyone. What works brilliantly for one person, fails miserably with the next. Even when working wth the same person, what works fantastically today, does not necessarily work at all next week.

Consequently, it is essential for an effective therapist to develop a number of therapeutic skills, one area of which can be expertise in the use of hypnosis in therapy. A well trained therapist, who is also well trained in the use of hypnotherapeutic techniques, simply has more tools in their toolbox than a therapist who is not!

It is of great importance to note that no properly trained therapist will ever use hypnosis for everything - that would be akin to wanting to drug everything into abeyance. A basic tenet of ethical hypnotherapy is also that "ONE SHOULD NEVER TREAT IN HYPNOSIS ANYTHING THAT ONE IS NOT QUALIFIED TO TREAT OUT OF HYPNOSIS" (Didn't know that, did you CS?).

Go well

Reply to HomoeoPsych
Posted by: HomoeoPsych | 2007/04/16


Did you see the Carte Blanche programme on hypnosis? When one has SEEN someone undergoing major abdominal surgery with hypnosis as the only anaesthetic, whilst at the same time being wide awake & quite capable of conversing with the surgical team, the "placebo hypothesis" of hypnosis tends to lose a bit of credibility! And, just in case you think this one example was an exception, James Braid - a Scottish surgeon in India at the turn of the 18th centuary - is documented to have performed over 1 000 (yes, one THOUSAND) major surgical procedures with hypnosis as the only anaesthetic! Not only did his patients experience relatively pain free surgery, but his mortality rate from the surgeries (which in thse days were performed without anaesthetic - bite the bullet & all that) was reduced from 50 % to around 5%!

So, no, it's NOT placebo!

But even if it was, so what? I have great appreciation for the role of the placebo effect, particularly as it has no known negative side effects that I am aware of! I really don't care why my patients get weel, just that they do!

Go well.

Reply to HomoeoPsych
Posted by: RMC | 2007/04/16

Hey, they might be so doped on pills they only look happy! They might be looking at you thinking that you're the calm one.

I still think hypnosis is bad idea. to me it is like a placebo - you believe that it will fix you so it does. Your GP should be able to give you a name of a CBT person

Reply to RMC
Posted by: HomoeoPsych | 2007/04/16

Hi Ben

Contact the SA Society for Clinical Hypnosis (SASCH) for a referral to a registered therapist thrained in hypnosis in your area

Go well

Reply to HomoeoPsych

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