Why Neuroplasticity is a Big Deal

August 16th, 2013 § Comments Off on Why Neuroplasticity is a Big Deal § permalink

Why Neuroplasticity is a Big Deal – The term “neuroplasticity” is being heard often these days. Why? What is the big deal about it? Why should we care? This guest post by Robert Lilly addresses those questions.

The term “neuroplasticity” is being heard more and more these days. Why? What is the big deal about it? To understand that, let’s begin by first defining what neuroplasticity is. According to MedicineNet.com, neuroplasticity is “the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. Neuroplasticity allows the neurons (nerve cells) in the brain to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or to changes in their environment.” According to Wikipedia the term refers to “changes in neural pathways and synapses which are due to changes in behavior, environment and neural processes, as well as changes resulting from bodily injury. Neuroplasticity has replaced the formerly-held position that the brain is a physiologically static organ, and explores how – and in which ways – the brain changes throughout life.” In addition, from the National Library of Medicine – Medical Subject Headings: “The capacity of the NERVOUS SYSTEM to change its reactivity as the result of successive activations.” In other words, it refers to the brain’s ability to grow and change as a result of stimuli throughout a person’s entire lifespan. » Read the rest of this entry «

Using Hypnosis to Stop Procrastinating

August 1st, 2013 § Comments Off on Using Hypnosis to Stop Procrastinating § permalink

I’m sure you’ll understand me when I tell you that I’ve wanted to write an article about using hypnosis to stop procrastinating for such a long time, but I just keep putting it off! Procrastination – that annoying habit of consistently putting off doing things that you know you have to do. It happens to all of us from time to time, but for some, it can turn into more than just an occasional annoyance. It can become problematic to the point that it interferes with one’s ability to finish school, to work dependably, or to fulfill one’s potential.

What exactly is procrastination?

“According to psychologist Professor Clarry Lay, a prominent writer on procrastination, procrastination occurs when there’s ’a temporal gap between intended behavior and enacted behavior.’ That is, procrastination is occurring when there’s a significant time period between when people intend to do a job, and when they actually do it.” – Overcoming Procrastination

Perhaps one of the most frustrating things about procrastination is the fact that we can’t blame anyone but ourselves for not following through with our obligations. This fact may be to our detriment, but it is also to our benefit. Because no one else is responsible for our procrastination, we have the absolute power to diminish and/or eliminate procrastination on our own. This is where hypnosis comes in. » Read the rest of this entry «

A Good Night’s Sleep is Icing on the Cake

July 17th, 2013 § Comments Off on A Good Night’s Sleep is Icing on the Cake § permalink

I recently wrote an article about the importance of a good night’s sleep, and how hypnosis can alleviate sleep issues. What I didn’t know at the time was about the added benefits of adequate sleep. According to this article A Good Night’s Sleep Increases the Cardiovascular Benefits of a Healthy Lifestyle sleeping well enhances the benefits of an already healthy lifestyle.

I have noticed with a handful of clients, an almost “macho” attitude about surviving on minimal sleep, as though it were something to be proud of. Not only can sleep deprivation decrease the health benefits of a healthy diet, exercise, moderate alcohol consumption, and abstinence from the use of tobacco, it can result in an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

There are a variety of reasons for not getting sufficient sleep. They can include environmental factors, health problems, side effects from medication, stress and anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse, or just plain bad habits. Regardless of the cause, hypnosis is a very effective tool for creating healthy sleep patterns. I have worked with many clients who have suffered with insomnia for years, and with just one hypnosis session have successfully changed their sleep patterns.

There is nothing like a good night’s sleep! It’s normal to have occasional bouts of sleeplessness, but if you experience persistent issues with your ability to get a full night’s sleep, give hypnosis a try. It’s easy, it’s safe, and it works.

Hypnosis Can Help Teens Get the Sleep They Need

July 10th, 2013 § Comments Off on Hypnosis Can Help Teens Get the Sleep They Need § permalink

Hypnosis can help teens get the sleep they need. The majority of teenagers developmental changes take place in the brain during sleep.

We all know that teens go through emotional, physical, and psychological changes as they enter adulthood. According to this study, Sleep Study Reveals How the Adolescent Brain Makes the Transition to Mature Thinking, the majority of these developmental changes take place in the brain during sleep.

Unfortunately for many teens, their sleep cycles, and the quality of their sleep, are compromised by over stimulation, excess stress and anxiety, and sometimes the abuse of drugs and/or alcohol. It is clear that getting a full night’s sleep, uninterrupted, is critical for the successful brain development of our teens. Parents can help by monitoring the types and number of responsibilities their teens have. Many adolescents are overwhelmed with school work, participation in sports, music classes, part-time jobs, family and/or church responsibilities, the social pressures of being a teenager, and more. Add into the mix a dysfunctional family environment, poverty conditions, poor diet and depression, and you have a crisis situation.

Hypnosis can’t change one’s life situation, but it can make it easier to prioritize, to remain calm, and most importantly, to get a full night of uninterrupted restorative sleep on a regular basis. Maintaining a regimen of quality sleep for teens is critical to their brain development. Hypnosis is a great way to develop and maintain healthy sleep patterns at any age.

Phantom Limb Pain and Hypnosis

July 3rd, 2013 § Comments Off on Phantom Limb Pain and Hypnosis § permalink

Phantom Limb Pain and Hypnosis: Phantom limb pain is caused by the nerves that would normally communicate energy to an amputated or missing limb. Hypnosis can help rewire the brain.

Phantom limb pain is a very interesting phenomenon. It is the sensation that the amputated or missing limb is still attached to the body, and is actually moving with other body parts. Phantom pain happens when the nerves that would normally communicate energy to the missing limb cause pain. The pain sensations are generally described as burning sensations or other strange sensations that can be very agonizing for some people. Some experience temperature change in the missing limb,  itchiness, or the sensation that the limb is in an uncomfortable position and causing great discomfort.

A variety of treatments to alleviate phantom pain are available including  medication, physical treatment, nerve block, neuromodulation, and surgical treatment. Mirror therapy is another option for pain relief, and based on what we know about the subconscious mind, it makes a lot of sense. You may recall, from previous posts, that the subconscious mind does not discriminate between actually doing something and pretending or thinking about doing something.

In mirror therapy, a mirror box is used to trick the brain into thinking, and seeing, that the missing limb still exists. The patient places the good limb in a position that is reflected back in a way that makes the brain see two matching limbs. The patient then makes movements with the good limb, and the brain sees the reflected imagine of both limbs moving. Through the use of this artificial visual feedback, it becomes possible for the patient to “move” the phantom limb into a comfortable position.

Hypnosis is often used for pain management and in the case of phantom pain, it seems clear to me how valuable it can be to practice “seeing” the missing limb moving and responding in a way the helps to alleviate the pain. Again, the subconscious mind does not know the difference between doing and pretending. For those who are not visual, they can improve the degree of pain they experience by engaging in the “feeling” sense of the limb moving. The power of our mind is phenomenal, and hypnosis can expedite the desired outcome in many cases.