Clients with Parkinson’s disease share the stiffness, shakiness, slowness, pain, fear, anxiety, dementia and sleeplessness that they experience with the disease. As part of integrated medical care, clinical hypnosis is a safe and drug-free approach for treatment that has shown to be effective in reducing these and other symptoms of Parkinson’s.
In one National Institutes of Health (NIH) report, “Results revealed a 94 percent reduction in rest tremors following treatment. Self-reported levels of anxiety, depression, sleep quality, pain, stiffness, libido, and quality of life also showed improvements. The patient reported a high level of satisfaction with treatment.”1
The NIH conducted another study in 1990 measuring the effects of hypnotherapy on tremors associated with Parkinson’s. During this study, the patient being observed was also monitored using polygraph recordings so that they could measure results. This patient was also taught self-hypnosis and was instructed to implement the strategies up to four times a day in addition to taking his traditional prescriptions. The study found that the daily sessions of hypnosis were beneficial in reducing tremors.2
According to Science Daily, scientists found that hypnosis can slow down the impacts of dementia (including Lewy body) and improve quality of life for those living with the condition.3
In my own experience over the past 23 years, people with Parkinson’s have reported improvements in flexibility, balance and mobility, mood, motivation, engagement with life and better sleep along with less anxiety, improved peace of mind and reduced tremors and pain.
One client, I’ll call him John, first came to my office at the age of 56 in March 2011. Three years prior, he had developed tremors, changes in his voice, bradykinesia (slow movement and stiffness) and was experiencing impaired balance. John had been an active outdoor enthusiast who ran marathons, loved mountain biking and frequently went rock climbing. Depressed, discouraged and stressed, John wanted hypnosis to help him cope with the disease and to reduce his stress and anxiety.
After several sessions over a few months, John reported that he was calmer, happier, more loving toward his wife and family, and that the disease symptoms he was experiencing were diminished. His voice was stronger, and he was walking faster with greater flexibility and balance.
When we last spoke on the phone in 2016, John told me that he continued to use the self-hypnosis and other mindfulness techniques that I taught him, and the symptoms he had previously experienced continued to be minimal. He was even able to go on hikes with his wife.
Teaching self-hypnosis and other mindfulness-based tools that you can use on your own is an important part of therapy. I also provide clients with hypnosis MP3 recordings that further help improve quality of life by promoting positive behavioral responses to the symptoms.
Medical hypnosis won’t cure you, but it can help you heal by restoring your life to wholeness. You can have joy, happiness and hope.
Roger Moore is a certified counselor and registered hypnotherapist with Palm Desert Hypnosis and can be reached at [email protected]; (760) 219.8079. For more information, visit www.PalmDesertHpnosis.com.