Can hypnotherapy help with symptoms of ADHD?

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Quite simply, yes!  

Although traditional approaches to treating ADHD involves medication and psychotherapy, there are other methods and techniques that can help relieve the associated symptoms and cofactors of ADHD.  One of these being hypnotherapy.

Hypnotherapy is an incredibly powerful tool which can help to improve quality of life and solve a variety of problems.  As far as we know, there is no ‘cure’ for ADHD. But how hypnotherapy works is by helping those living with ADHD to find acceptance and guide them through the entanglement of symptoms, including stress, anxiety and overwhelm.

What the experts say…

Research was carried out by a number of neuroscience experts and published by the British Society of Clinical and Academic Hypnosis.  The research looked into the long-term effects of hypnotherapy and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) for treatment in adults with ADHD.  Their published results looked at the 6 months after subjects started treatment. The outcome of the research showed a significant difference between the two, with hypnotherapy showing a better long-term outcome.  You can read the paper in question here.

So how exactly does hypnotherapy help symptoms of ADHD?

When we feel anxious or stressed, our primitive mind takes over.  Our primitive mind is the automatic part of our brain that deals with response, reflex and emotion.  It’s what tells us in certain situations whether we need to freeze or run. As an example, when you’re crossing the road and a car is coming towards you.  Or maybe even seeing a large dog charging towards you barking and growling. If we had to wait for our thinking mind to make a good decision, it would be too late, so our primitive mind takes over at lightning speed to keep us safe.

Our thinking mind acts like a conductor, or sometimes referred to as a schoolteacher or translator.  It’s the part of our brains that processes the information coming in, making sense of things and allowing us to take rational action.  

How this is different with ADHD

The problem begins when the primitive mind is being flexed all the time, which is often the case with ADHDers.  During times of anxiety and stress, the brain triggers the ‘fight or flight’ response, and the primitive mind draws on the resources, giving less power to the thinking mind.  It’s theorised that people with ADHD already have an overactive primitive mind, which is then exacerbated by stress and anxiety.

Many ADHDers also find they act impulsively rather than rationally, allowing more control to our primitive mind.  As well as struggling with things like working memory, sensory processing and impulse control, which are all helped by our thinking mind.

How hypnotherapy works

The use of hypnotherapy here is about getting the thinking and primitive minds working together in harmony.  It also acts to soothe the primitive mind, so it doesn’t respond so often or so intensely.

I often describe it to clients as imagining a rider and an elephant.  The rider knows the best way to turn is left. If the elephant agrees then the rider is in charge.  If the elephant wants to go right, or decides to take a rest, it doesn’t matter what the rider does or thinks, it’s going to be hard to make it happen!  

Hypnotherapy acts like a translator for both the rider and the elephant, so that you can more easily do whatever it is that you want to do. 

You can read more about hypnotherapy and how it works in my blog ‘Hypnosis 101: What Is Hypnotherapy And How Does It Work?’.  

Hypnotherapy isn’t about replacing your existing form of treatment or medication.  It’s about working alongside them to dramatically improve your quality of life.

But don’t just take my word for it!  Here is what one of my clients has to say about her time with me…

“Leah’s hypnotherapy sessions have helped to reduce my anxiety, helped me to understand it’s triggers, and helped me understand how my ADHD and anxiety interact with each other.

Each hypnosis session left me feeling so calm and relaxed, even during really stressful weeks. The tools and techniques Leah suggested, including the hypnosis track she gave me to listen to between sessions, have helped reduce my anxiety and helped me sleep better. I’ve been able to focus my energy and time on other things and am generally happier and more positive as a result of these sessions.

Leah is very knowledgeable about ADHD and anxiety and the fact that she has ADHD herself means that she really understands what it is like to live with it; she really ‘gets’ the unique challenges that someone with ADHD faces.

It’s been really helpful to have this time each week dedicated to looking after myself and my own wellbeing. Leah has helped me focus on my goals, what I want to improve and how to get there.” – Holly

If this has piqued your interest and you want to learn more about hypnotherapy and how it can help you to live well with ADHD, why not contact me to find out more.  Or if you want to take action today, click here to book in for your consultation assessment.