How Effective is Clinical Hypnotherapy?

Clinical Hypnotherapy (or Medical Hypnotherapy, or Clinical Hypnosis) is recognized by the scientific community as an effective healing tool. It is known to be successful where other interventions have not been able to produce the desired outcome.

There is encouraging evidence demonstrating the beneficial effects of hypno-therapeutic procedures in alleviating the symptoms of a range of complaints that fall under the heading ‘psychosomatic illness.’ These include tension headaches and migraine; asthma; gastrointestinal complaints such as irritable bowel syndrome; warts; and possibly other skin complaints such as eczema, psoriasis and urticaria (hives).The British Psychological Society (2001)

A great deal of research has been conducted on the efficiency and effectiveness of hypnosis. Several investigators during the 1970’s and 1980’s provided clinical and experimental evidence about the effectiveness of hypnosis for smoking cessation, substance abuse, weight loss, phobias, depression, and anxiety. These results were summarized by the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis as follows:

  1. Home Study Self-Hypnosis : 2 – 5% success rate
  2. Group Hypnosis Session: 2 – 5% success rate
  3. Single Individual Session: 17 – 20% success rate
  4. Three Individual Sessions: 45 – 50% success rate
  5. Five or More Individual Sessions: 85 – 90% success rate
In the mental health area, it is used for phobias, anxiety, sexual problems, alcoholism, smoking control, speech disorders, weight control, chronic pain, age regression therapy, self-esteem/ego strengthening, memory/concentration improvement and forensic work. In medicine, it uses include anesthesia and surgery, obstetrics/gynecology, control of bleeding, pain control, burn therapy, dermatology and habit control. Dentistry uses it to control fear, dental surgery, saliva control, gagging, bruxism, control of bleeding, tongue biting and general oral hygiene.American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (2015)

The researchers also discovered that customizing and individualizing the sessions increased the effectiveness of the sessions dramatically.

In addition to these studies, Alfred A. Barrios, PhD., has conducted a longitudinal survey of the psychotherapeutic literature and discovered the following success rates for hypnotherapy versus therapeutic methods:

  1. Psychoanalysis: 38% recovery after 600 sessions
  2. Behavior Therapy: 72% recovery after 22 sessions
  3. Hypnotherapy: 93% recovery after 6 sessions

Hypnosis with multiple, individualized and tailored sessions, is probably one of the most effective ways to bring about desired changes in the least amount of time.