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There are many differences between hypnotherapy and psychotherapy. One major difference is how the therapist approaches the problems that their patients are trying to solve. While most hypnotherapists work in sessions limited to just a few hours, some use psychotherapy techniques to address issues in the client’s past. Some hypnotherapists specialize in particular types of therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, psychoanalytical therapy, and regression to cause.
When choosing between hypnotherapy and psychotherapy, it’s important to understand the differences between these approaches. While hypnotherapists use therapeutic methods to help their patients overcome their issues, hypnotherapists also use tools such as guided imagery to lull their clients into a relaxed state. This state is a safe and controlled way for a hypnotherapist to influence a client’s behavior.
Psychotherapy, on the other hand, aims to improve mental health and behavior. Often used to increase self-confidence, hypnosis is an effective way to break bad habits and overcome phobias. While hypnosis is not a substitute for medicine, it can have positive effects on the patient’s recovery. For example, hypnosis can help people overcome irritable bowel syndrome, which is caused primarily by anxiety. During a session, a hypnotherapist will ask their client to visualize a situation that may be causing the problem.
Psychotherapy and hypnotherapy have distinct strengths. Psychotherapy is an evidence-based treatment for mild to moderate depression, whereas hypnotherapy relies on behavioural-type methods. Psychotherapy is unlikely to work for some conditions, including bipolar disorder. Hypnotherapy has proven to be effective in treating obsession, though there is a difference between the two. There are times when hypnotherapy is more appropriate for an individual.
In psychotherapy, the therapist works on the conscious mind, whereas hypnotherapy uses the unconscious mind. Throughout the sessions, the therapist works to change subconscious thoughts and beliefs. Most patients will need between seven and ten sessions to see a significant change. While hypnotherapy uses the unconscious mind, psychotherapy relies on a more comprehensive approach to addressing a client’s problems.
Generally, hypnotherapy and psychotherapy can both work in conjunction. Hypnotherapy can loosen the grip on addictions and phobias. Psychotherapists may use hypnotherapy to shift a client’s negative core belie