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Treating Depression with Hypnotherapy

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The treatment for depression that works well is cognitive, behavioural and interpersonal approaches. Using psychotherapy and utilising hypnosis, shows greater therapeutic outcomes than drug therapy. This is termed as brief therapy, and may take between 7 - 9 sessions. Clinical hypnosis provides a different way of thinking and feeling regarding depressive negative thoughts and feelings.

Everyone has the ability to think and feel differently, and to be able to heal themselves with the assistance of hypnotherapy and a good clinician. Hypnotherapy and psychotherapy is well established in treating depression and incorporated with hypnosis, provides positive outcomes within the brief therapy framework.

So who gets depressed, and why?

Any person young or old, male or female can become depressed. Depression is increasing in all age groups, but particularly in the younger teenage group. Females tend to experience depression twice as frequently than males, and depression is estimated 25 - 40% more common amongst children, that have grown up with a parent that is depressed.

There have been many misconceived ideas about depressed people, that they are weak, or just feel sorry for themselves. They are told to 'snap out of it' or 'there are other people worse off than you'. This is certainly not an answer and often makes the person feel guilty or worse about their condition.

Depression has many causes, and as a result has many viable avenues of treatment. Mildly and severely depressed client's find themselves in situations that are enormously painful and who need help to find a way out. It can effect you physically, causing problems such as eating, sleep disturbance, a decrease of pleasure or interest, fatigue and anxiety. Cognitively, depression can effect your ability to think clearly, making it difficult to concentrate, including poor memory, which can include errors in judgement and decision making.

Day to day living has become more stressful for some people, changes in society, a higher divorce or separation rate, and the general break-up of families, job insecurity, being too fat or too thin. Those who do not perceive themselves as successful, even with a nice car, house, or family. Pressures on children to do better at school, with the now increasing vast array of subjects, can lead to despair, frustration, that may cause anxiety, helplessness or hopelessness. Of course not everyone who experiences these problems or stresses becomes depressed. However, there are numerous amounts of people, who go untreated because either they don't know they are depressed, or a consultation with a doctor fails to diagnose depression.

There can be many underlying medical and psychological disorders that create depression where a full investigation is required.

Biochemistry can play an important part, however, the lack of genetic make-up in identifying biochemical imbalance that creates depression, has not been fully established. We are biological and sensitive to the environment, family and cultural influences. Most people overestimate the biological contributory factor when evidence is far stronger for depression having its origins, in the way people think about and respond to life experiences.

Chemical imbalances such as serotonin, noradrenaline and dopamine usually return to normal levels, when there is an interaction with psychotherapy for depression. There is no further need to take any medication to correct the imbalance. This suggests that the imbalance is the body's physical response to psychological depression, rather than the other way around.

Sociology. There is a more important and established understanding that in a social setting, the product of family environment, plays more relevance in producing depression. Learnt responses from a depressed mother, father or other family member can provide that child with negativity at a later time. It is now a faster, more complex life, with higher demands placed on the individual, most jobs are not as secure as they were, there is more information technology, hours spent watching TV or on the Internet can produce poor socialisation.

Anti-Depressant Agents. Drugs can often suppress underlying problems, only to find when the patient stops taking the anti-depressant drug, they become depressed. There is a higher relapse rate from medication than therapy. Anti-depressant medication cannot teach coping skills, problem solving skills, resolve interpersonal issues, or protect against reoccurrence of depressive episodes.

It would be unfair to say that all people do not get relief from medication, and in some instances is definitely required. Older medications such as tricyclics (TCA's) monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI's) and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI's) such as Prozac, Paroxetine and Seroxat. All these drugs have many side effects, everyone is an individual, and one drug may not work well, where another might.

Whether it is clinical depression or post natal depression, mild, severe, an individual has the ability to break up their depression if they want to. It is a very important step to recognise depression and then to obtain help. Everyone is an individual, therefore therapy is an individualised to pertain to that person.

A person who is depressed, does the same old things, day in and day out, more than likely ruminating over the same old negative thoughts and problems. When you do something differently, you may get a different and much better result. It is knowing what to do differently that counts, providing a better future.

Depression is manageable and recovery is highly likely if approached intelligently and by a skilled therapist.



By David Kato
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Treating Depression with Hypnotherapy


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