Hypnotherapy is a psychological intervention which children enjoy and gain lots of tools to support them through a particular issue. Hypnotherapy is available for children as young as 4 years however this will depend of their ability to concentrate. I would recommend hypnotherapy from 6yrs + unless the child is particularly mature for his/her age.
Children are very open to try new things such as Hypnotherapy, without the misconceptions that some adults have. Children use their imaginations every day and therefore enjoy visualising during hypnotherapy.
A hypnotherapy session with a child is very informal, the session is very much structured around the child’s responses, language, experiences and understandings. Every child is unique and are often at a different learning level and maturity level to their peers.
A child’s reaction to hypnotherapy is often very different from that on an adult. Typically an adult achieves a deep or medium level of hypnosis and become so relaxed they are remain very still. Many children become very deeply relaxed and become still, however for some children prefer to keep their eyes open and are often fidgety. Both responses from children are very natural and normal and a great deal of therapeutic work can be achieved.
With both children and adults it is important to make time for your child to listen to Cd’s which accompany the session, to practise the skills taught, and to give your child positive re-enforcements on their progress and hard work. Great things can be achieved in one session, however I would tend to advise more that one session – to check on progress, to use additional techniques and to give the child and yourself further support and confidence.
Below show some of the typical issues children and young people gain benefit from hypnosis.
- Confidence and self esteem
- Negative thoughts
- Toilet Issues (constipation, encopresis, enuresis)
- Separation anxiety
- Obsessive thoughts or compulsions
- Sleeping problems
- Being bullied
- Behaviour problems
- Learning and concentration improvements
- Exam confidence
- Fears (needles, sickness, dentist etc..)
- Habits (thumb sucking, biting nails)
- Divorce difficulty
Therapeutic interventions with young people are widely seen to promote and enhance mental well-being and helps to reduce emotional distress and behaviour problems. Some schools, colleges and universities have a qualified counsellor available during the school day.
Counselling helps the young person to increase their power and control over their feelings and behaviour. The reasons young people attend counselling are wide ranging and include:
- Bereavement and loss
- Traumatic experiences
- Parental separation and divorce
- Abusive situations or suspected abuse
- Relationship difficulties
- Difficulties setting into a new school or area
- Changes in mood or behaviour
- Being bullied or being the bully
- Low confidence or self esteem
- Family issues
- Stress or anxiety
- Negative thinking
With younger children I use therapeutic play to help the child express their feelings and work through their issues. Older children prefer to talk through their feelings and to use activity sheets to help explore issues.