Irritable Bowel Syndrome, known as IBS, affects up to 1 in 5 people in the UK over the course of their lifetime. If you have been diagnosed with IBS, you may have been given certain dietary advice, perhaps been put on certain medication or maybe been told that “talking therapies” can help with the symptoms.
IBS can be debilitating, preventing you from achieving simple tasks such as going shopping or enjoying long walks. It may also be causing you serious discomfort on a regular basis. Imagine what it would be like to be completely free of your symptoms. Hypnotherapy can help you break the cycle of pain and anxiety, and has done so for thousands of people.
Research pioneered by Professor Whorwell, a gastroenterologist at Wythenshawe Hospital, shows that hypnotherapy can make significant contribution to the treatment of IBS. Whorwell began investigating the application of hypnotherapy in the 1980s and his research shows that over 60% of IBS sufferers who undertake hypnotherapy see long term improvement, or complete disappearance of the condition, often with no recurrence.
Hypnotherapy is now acknowledged within the wider medical profession as an evidenced-based therapy that can help reduce the symptoms of IBS, and sometimes alleviate them entirely. The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) also lists hypnotherapy as one of the treatments to help with IBS.
We know that IBS can be exacerbated by anxiety or stress, and that the subsequent worry about the IBS can perpetuate the effects. Hypnotherapy can get to the root of the problem, giving you the tools to manage any stress that may be making the IBS worse, and by using positive suggestion increase your confidence in your well-being to reduce sensitivity in your gut.
What are the symptoms of IBS?
Symptoms vary between individuals, but the following are common:
- Abdominal pain and discomfort
- Abdominal contractions, spasms or cramps
- Excess wind
Sufferers may experience a combination of some of these symptoms, with one in particular occurring more regularly or with greater severity.
They can vary from mild, where they do not really affect someone’s quality of life, to serious, prompting the sufferer to seek medical help.
Because IBS is such a loose collection of symptoms, there is no one definitive cure. However, there are a number of self-help treatments that can alleviate symptoms, such as a controlled diet and therapies such as hypnosis.