I specialise in treating depression, so this is a subject I understand well.
Depression is a major problem, and is growing. It is the most common psychological disorder in the Western world.
"Depression, we are saying, is not a disease, it is a natural response to certain types of emotional introspection that result in excessive dreaming." - Human Givens, 2003, J. Griffin
Depression is mostly caused by how we interpret reality; it's about how we respond and make sense of events. It can be triggered by misfortunate circumstances (though is not actually caused by them as many people survive bad situations without becoming depressed) and is in some cases (only 10-18%) caused by a medical condition.
Depression is linked to stress: when you ruminate, or introspect in a negative way, you create emotional arousal that causes the release of stress hormones. That night, in REM (dream sleep), you become emotionally aroused again as dreaming 'flushes out' the emotional arousal from your brain. That is why depressed people have higher levels of stress hormones, and also why you can wake up feeling exhausted.
It's essential to find the right therapist to help you recover quickly. Medication can help alleviate the symptoms of depression, however it does not treat the causes of depression and so depression often returns after medication is stopped.
Evidence shows us that the best type of therapy for depression is one that is solution focussed, rather than focussing on past hurts and problems. Therefore, solution focussed Hypnotherapy is an effective way of treating depression. This is because it has been proven that therapies that increase rumination (i.e. focussing on past hurts and problems) makes depression worse. This makes sense when you understand the causes of depression. Whats more, Hypnotherapy can work alongside medication.
Mindfulness Meditation can also assist with mental wellbeing, and is recommended by the NHS and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) as a way to prevent depression in people who have had bouts of depression in the past
It is always important to speak to your GP if you have depression, to discuss treatment options including medication. Antidepressants can work successfully on the symptoms of depression, but it is important to note that they don't treat the cause. Hypnotherapy can work alongside antidepressants, because they can treat the cause as well as giving you the time to talk and emotional support.
My approach to depression
My approach is solution focused, because this is the most effective approach for treating depression. I tailor my approach to therapy according to your needs, as everyone's experience of depression is different, but always look at helping clients to look forwards and break the cycle of rumination.
I can use a combination of Hypnotherapy, NLP and CBT (Cognitive Behaviour Therapy) to help create more healthy thinking styles, increase your coping mechanisms and stop the cycle of rumination. Relaxation is essential, yet can be difficult when you are depressed, so I can give guidance on relaxation techniques, including a relaxation hypnotherapy CD. I give practical advise to help you decrease your anxiety, stress and depression, increase your energy levels and improve sleep.
I also recommend Mindfulness Meditation to anyone suffering depression, as Mindfulness can help lift mood and reduce relapse rates of depression by about 50%.
I have managed to help people who have suffered from depression for many years, and others whom have already undergone other treatments with little benefit, so please don't feel defeated - it is never too late to change and I don't believe anyone is beyond help.
How many hypnosis sessions?
Generally, you can expect to need anywhere between 4 and about 10 sessions to treat depression. This of course differs from person to person, and with the severity of your depression. Nevertheless, some improvements can be found after just one session.