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sleep / relaxation / meditation

9 Things You Might Not Know About Sleep Hypnosis

by BetterSleep
Dec 10 • 4 min read

Stereotypes around hypnosis tend to conjure ideas of swinging pocket watches, swirling images, and the old quote: “You are getting sleepy…” In reality, sleep hypnosis is a valid, tested way to get better rest. Learn more about this safe technique and consider trying it out to improve your sleep.

What Is Hypnosis?

Hypnosis, or hypnotherapy, is a state of intense concentration where we feel relaxed and open to suggestion. For this reason, trained hypnotherapists use this method to help their patients get relief from issues like pain or addiction.

Sleep hypnosis involves using hypnotherapy to treat insomnia and other sleep conditions. A hypnotherapist talks to their patient soothingly, describes specific imagery, and guides them into a relaxed state. They then suggest ways for them to achieve their goals, like sleeping better.

9 Important Facts About Sleep Hypnosis

If you struggle with sleep, hypnosis may be a valid strategy to find relief. Here’s what you need to know:

1. Hypnosis doesn’t make you lose control. Movies and books often portray it this way, but people are generally aware of what’s happening during hypnosis and do remember it later.

2. Hypnosis is considered safe for most of us. Some people experience minor adverse reactions, like headaches, drowsiness, dizziness, and anxiety. However, it may not be the right fit for those with severe or diagnosed mental illness.

3. Hypnotherapy should only be conducted by professionals trained and certified in hypnotherapy.

4. Research indicates that the benefits of hypnosis are brought on by changes in brain activity in areas that control our body and actions.

5. An extensive review of studies of hypnosis and sleep found this strategy to be effective for many people. The study also concluded that sleep hypnosis is safe, with very few side effects.

6. Self-hypnosis works too! While it’s a good idea to work with a trained hypnotherapist for serious sleep problems, people also benefit from doing it themselves. One study found that subjects spent more time in a deep sleep state and less time awake after listening to a guided hypnosis practice before bed.

7. Meditation is similar to self-hypnosis. If you’ve ever meditated to the point of intense relaxation and focus, you may have unknowingly hypnotized yourself.

8. Hypnosis shouldn’t put you to sleep immediately. The point of hypnosis is to take the suggestions from the session and apply them later on. However, if you’re sleep-deprived, don’t be surprised if you do fall asleep fast.

9. If you’re not sure hypnosis is safe for you, talk to your doctor before trying it out. They should be able to provide a referral to a trained, certified hypnotherapist.

Hypnosis Is a Natural Sleep Aid

It’s tempting to turn to medications when you can’t sleep. Unfortunately, these drugs aren’t an ideal solution, especially for the long-term. Not only can they cause side effects, but they also ignore the underlying issues that prevent you from getting rest. Medication may help put you to sleep, but it doesn’t address the stress, anxiety, or other factors interfering with your sleep.

Sleep hypnosis offers a natural alternative to medications. Sleep hypnosis works to gently guide your mind into a relaxed state so that you can fall asleep sooner and sleep better overall. Hypnosis can be a powerful tool for treating the root causes of your sleep issues, potentially helping you overcome them altogether.

If you’re interested in trying out this technique, check out the sleep hypnosis meditations on BetterSleep. The Deep Forest, Doorway to Dreams, and River of Sleep practices are a great place to start and learn about sleep hypnosis from the comfort of your own bed. This content, created by hypnosis and mindfulness experts Aster J. Haile, John Moyer and Andrew Green, will guide you through the process of safe self-hypnosis and help you drift gently off to sleep.

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