Kids feel everything at such a bigger level than us adults do. That does, unfortunately, include all of the negative and unpleasant emotions.
Kids are so in touch with these emotions, in fact, that I think they can teach us adults things about our own perspectives.
Whatever your child is struggling with, hypnotherapy can help. There are five big issues that I have helped kids with in the past as a clinical hypnotherapist. These are some issues that are worth addressing.
1. Nail biting
Nail biting is a habit most frequently associated with stress or anxiety. In kids, they have identified this negative behaviour as something that soothes their discomfort or helps them in some way – even if they are, in fact, causing themselves pain. Nail biting can lead to great physical harm in children, with varying levels of self-harm inflicted by the child themselves. It’s because of this that hypnotherapy is so useful, because it identifies the underlying negative pattern and can change the way a child might respond to them. In some cases it can help a child identify the source of their triggers that leads to nail biting in the first place, and help them figure out how best to avoid these triggers again in the future.
2. Fears and Phobias
Kids tend to develop phobias and fears from a traumatic memory or scene involving the specific fear. It is also common for a child to have the same fear as a parent through modelling. It could be anything from a fear of the dark, to insects, vomit, or water. While fear is a natural response that dates back to prehistoric times (back when we fought for our survival, hence the fight-or-flight way of thinking), but if the fear is a dominant part of your child’s awareness and attention, this irrational response is not beneficial to their lives. It can prevent them from trying new things, going places, or just create a continuous feeling of anxiety. Thankfully, all fears and phobias can be released using hypnotherapy. Once the mind has accepted a new response to the situation the fear is greatly reduced or eliminated completely.
3. Sleep issues
Insomnia or poor sleep habits in children are as impactful and harmful to their health as for adults – when you’re a kid, you need the extra sleep in order to be your best and happiest. Sleep issues that develop in kids can last well into adulthood, from insomnia to anxiety and overthinking. Because hypnotherapy is designed to help one reach a relaxed state, some people including children may fall into the same brain wave state as sleep during their session, and this is perfectly acceptable, even wonderful – it means your child is on the right track to getting the sleep they need. Poor sleep habits in children can lead to crabbiness, anger, lack of focus, and hyperactivity. It is important for children to create lasting good habits for sleep.
Children can develop dental issues just like adults, such as migraines and headaches from bruxism and teeth grinding, which are typically a physical symptom of anxiety and stress. Another dental issue children just like adults might have is a fear of needles, the dentist, or dental procedures. It’s very fortunate that just like dental technology itself, there is a form of hypnotherapy called HypnoDontics which HHC specialize in. This type of hypnosis can also help children with many issues including thumb sucking, getting used to dental appliances, reducing analgesics, and creating relaxation during long procedures resulting in calmer and less stressful dentist appointments.
5. Bed wetting
This can be traumatic to anyone regardless of their age. Children especially feel a huge sense of shame and embarrassment from wetting the bed. Children who are deep sleepers are more likely to have issues with wetting the bed. They are simply not aware of the full bladder. It is also possible for children who were once dry at night to begin wetting the bed again when an emotional event occurs such a death in the family, a move, or parent separation. This is called “regression.” Hypnotherapy can help your child train their mind and body to wake up in time to use the toilet or to work through emotional issues causing the regression back to wetting the bed.
What NOT to do when bringing your children for Hypnotherapy
Did you know there are things that parents can do which are not helpful in trying to bring children for hypnotherapy? For example, forcing a child into a hypnotherapy session will never, ever achieve the results you want to see changed. The child must see some benefit to want to change. Like with adults, hypnotherapy is not a magic wand that I wave over their heads and then, ta-da, the child with the bad habits is fixed after one session. If you want to see them grow and transform into healthy adults as time goes on, then you both need to want to be part of the process of change. It is very helpful for both parents to maintain a positive attitude about the process. Expectations of results, both positive and negative, are impressed upon your child as a belief.