Hypnotherapy for cannabis addicton
Using hypnotherapy to treat cannabis addiction
An addiction of any kind can be inherently difficult to work with and treat, regardless if it is a primary problem for a person or as an aspect of another issue all together. I have always been taught that addictions are looked at as coping mechanisms or even reward mechanisms, sometimes even as a method of self-soothing.
In practise people only usually ever present in my clinic when they have explored all other options. This may be the case of other therapists that are reading this or even people looking for help. I have found that hypnotherapy when combined with other clinical interventions proves to be a very useful intervention when working with cannabis addiction. The theory that I work with is from the psychodynamic perspective and depth psychology when explaining the application of hypnotherapy to the treatment of cannabis addiction.
So, I would work from the premise of the unconscious mind, and the use of hypnotherapy would be talking to that aspect of the client’s unconscious, the part where it lies and using hypnotherapy to set up a safe place where a conversation could occur between these parts of the conscious and unconscious mind. I would also explain the process of how the unconscious helps a person cope with pain (emotional and/or physical) and that sometimes addictions can be a manifestation from the unconscious mind.
In hypnotherapy this is something called parts therapy, also referred to as ego state therapy. It is a very powerful intervention to use whilst working with certain behavioural issues and psychological issues that a client may feel that they can’t control. As a therapist that works a lot with this clients that present with addictions, I have found this form of therapy to be extremely useful when working with the nature of addiction. The reason for this is that is allows a large amount of flexibility for working with the problem on multiple levels.
It is important for the therapist to do a thorough assessment of a person’s past and how they feel about the current state of the problem. It is also important to look at how the person feels about their future as well as this could lead to issues of identity. The client may not know how life may be without the drug in their life, or who they are as a person or how to fill their time. This would be incorporated with the hypnotic suggestions that would be included with the parts work that you are doing.
Other interventions that I have found to be use alongside hypnotherapy are EFT (emotional freedom technique) and EMDR (eye movement desensitisation reprocessing). These interventions in combination with hypnotherapy can bring a large amount of relief to the client and offer a lot of potential for transformation. You would also have the client use a self-hypnosis recording and teach the client the EFT protocol and how to utilise it.
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