Trauma Informed Schools

Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and traumatic stress comes from a variety of sources, for example, bullying at school, school shootings, and exposure to events such as divorce or homelessness.

The following are ACE categories each category counts as one point:

  • Emotional abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Physical neglect
  • Emotional neglect
  • Substance abuse in the household (living with an alcoholic or a person with a substance abuse problem
  • Mental illness in the household (living with someone who suffered from depression or mental illness, or who had attempted suicide)
  • Mother treated violently
  • Divorce, death or parental separation
  • Criminal behavior in the household (a household member going to prison)

Of over 17,000 people surveyed 67% had at least one ACE and 12.6% had four or more. Those surveyed were college educated White middle-class patients of Kaiser Healthcare in San Diego, CA. One out of four school children has been exposed to a traumatic event that can affect learning and or behavior. Both children and adults can be changed by traumatic stress.

Schools having tools to manage traumatic stress empowers the members of the school community, students, and parents. In trauma-informed schools, the staff is trained to recognize and respond to students who have been impacted by traumatic stress. Those staffs include administrators, teachers, supportive staff, parents, and law enforcement. Also, students are provided with clear expectations and communication strategies to guide them through stressful situations. The goal is to not only provide tools to cope with extreme conditions but to create an underlying culture of respect and support.

Trauma can affect children in a variety of ways. The effects are far more pervasive than adults imagine. Over 60% of children surveyed experienced some form of trauma in the prior school year, and some suffered multiple traumas. Most children do not have the necessary coping skills to manage the impact of traumatic experiences.

One in three students who experience a traumatic event might exhibit symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Following a child’s exposure to a traumatic event, parents and teachers may observe the following symptoms, such as re-experiencing the event by continually thinking about it, replaying it over in their minds, or having nightmares.

Symptoms of trauma can directly affect a student’s ability to learn. They may be distracted by thoughts of the event that prevent them from paying attention in class, studying, or doing well on a test. Exposure to violence can lead to decreased IQ and reading ability. Some students might avoid going to school altogether.

Exposure to violence and other traumatic events can disrupt their ability to relate to others and successfully manage their emotions. This can lead to poor classroom behavior, which can drastically affect the teacher’s ability to teach. This makes it stressful for teachers and can affect suspensions, and expulsion rates.

Multiple exposures to violent outcomes include lower grade point averages and reduced graduation rates, along with increased incidences of teen pregnancy, joblessness, and poverty.

What is Child Traumatic Stress?

When children and adolescents are exposed to traumatic events or traumatic situations persistent, exposure overwhelms their ability to cope. When children have been exposed to conditions where they feared for their lives or believed they could have been injured, witnessed violence, or tragically lost a loved one; they may show signs of traumatic stress.

The impact on any given child depends partly on the physical danger, partly on his or her subjective reaction to the events, and partly on his or her age and developmental level. Some students may consciously try to avoid engagement and try not to think about the incident.

If your child is experiencing traumatic stress, you might notice

the following signs:

  • Difficulty sleeping and nightmares
  • Refusing to go to school
  • Lack of appetite
  • Bed-wetting or other regression in behavior
  • Interference with developmental milestones
  • Anger
  • Getting into fights at school or fighting more with siblings
  • Difficulty paying attention to teachers at school and parents at home
  • Avoidance of scary situations
  • Withdrawal from friends or activities
  • Nervousness or jumpiness
  • Intrusive memories of what happened
  • Play that includes recreating the event
  • Negative Cognitions and Mood — blaming others or self, diminished interest in pleasurable activities, inability to remember key aspects of the event.
  • Arousal — being on edge, being on the lookout, continuously being worried.

In conclusion, if your child is experiencing any of the signs contact school counselors or your pediatrician for help.

 

Heddy Keith, author of Through It All: A Memoir of Love and Loss

Is Trauma Affecting Learning In American Schools?

“CHILDREN CAN’T CHECK THEIR TRAUMA AT THE SCHOOL’S DOOR” SHARIF EL MEKKI

Students across our country experience unrelenting trauma. These experiences often go unspoken and untreated.

Researchers determined that “ACEs—adverse childhood experiences harm young people’s developing brains so profoundly that the effects show up decades later, and they cause most chronic diseases, and mental illness, and furthermore they are at the root of most violence.”

Researchers found 13% of adults in Pennsylvania have an ACEs score of 4 or higher. And 30-45% of adults nationwide reported an ACEs score of 4 or higher.

Trauma doesn’t turn off because the school bell rang. People talk about the importance of educating “the whole child.” This holistic approach includes art, music, social, emotional learning, computer science, etc. But what we fail to realize is that the whole child extends beyond school curriculum and requires support for the traumatic experiences that many of our students encounter daily.

Educators are now becoming aware of the effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder on the brains and well-being of children. Although, our collective actions haven’t kept pace with the research. We have a better understanding of the PTSD of soldiers, and many child advocates say that there is no “post” -traumatic for our youth. The ‘P’ in “post-traumatic” for our youth often stands for “persistent trauma.” Students deal with a constant barrage of decisions that adults make that perpetuate the trauma: racist redlining, deliberate under-funding of schools, and more.

Those facing persistent trauma, have difficulty building trust and maintaining healthy relationships. It is a barrier to learning. Schools must make decisions about how to support students. Parents and the community look to schools to provide the space and time to help students cope and thrive beyond the trauma they’ve experienced. Although, it is challenging to help students evolve beyond their persistent trauma. Strong school relationships, help kids cope and feel whole.

“CARING FOR MYSELF IS NOT SELF-INDULGENCE, IT IS SELF-PRESERVATION, AND THAT IS AN ACT OF POLITICAL WARFARE.” Audre Lorde

When adults don’t practice self-care, they make matters worse. Children need stable, level-headed caregivers. Adults need to help students learn self-care. The road to liberation is long and arduous. Self-care must be a part of our students’ and those who serve them daily.

Angela Davis said, “Self-care has to be incorporated in all of our efforts. And this is something new.”

This is what we need to prepare our students for. Not only do they face trauma, but they will also deal with racism, sexism, and a whole lot of other “isms” of oppression that are traumatic. Our students need to be prepared to handle the oppression, while they help dismantle it.

 

Adult decisions can perpetuate the trauma students experience.

Trauma-informed schools have ongoing professional development and reflection. “We make it a whole school project with every adult participating in building knowledge, increasing self-care, and thinking about how to support, rather than punish students when they are struggling. We know our students are bright and capable and we must hold them to the highest standards; we know they can achieve, and we support them in making decisions that will set them up for success.” Schools must also continue growing, being more reflective, and solutions-oriented as we help our youth and community.

Schools across the country are working hard to ensure students feel whole, despite what they have been exposed to and experience. We also must ensure that our schools don’t contribute to students’ experiences of persistent trauma.

Heddy Keith, author of Through It All: A Memoir of Love and Loss, The Men I Chose to Love and Lessons Learned

The Courage to Heal

Expressive writing is a powerful method to help people get through difficult times.

journal writer

It strengthens their immune systems as well as their minds, by assisting people to manage and learn from negative experiences. Writing is no stranger to therapy. For years, practitioners have used journals and other writing forms to help people heal from stress and trauma.

New research suggests that expressive writing may also offer physical benefits to people battling terminal or life-threatening diseases. Studies by psychologists James Pennebaker, Ph.D., the University of Texas—Austin, and Joshua Smyth, Ph.D., Syracuse University—suggest that writing about emotions and stress can boost immune functioning in patients with such illnesses like HIV/AIDS, asthma, and arthritis.

Researchers are now beginning to understand how and why writing benefits the immune system, and why some people appear to receive more help than others. There is agreement that the key to writing’s effectiveness is in the way people use it to interpret and understand their experiences, and even the words they use. Venting is not enough to relieve stress, and thereby improve health. To tap into writing’s healing power, people must use it to reflect on and better understand and learn from their emotions, Smyth says.

Health benefits of journaling
A groundbreaking study of writing’s physical effects appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association (Vol. 281, No. 14) In the study led by Smyth, over one hundred asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis patients wrote for 20 minutes on three consecutive days—seventy-one of them wrote about the most stressful event of their lives, and the rest wrote of the emotionally neutral subject of their daily plans. Four months after the writing exercise, seventy patients in the stressful-writing group showed improvement on clinical evaluations compared with thirty-seven of the control patients. Also, those who wrote about stress improved more and deteriorated less, than control groups for both diseases. “So, writing helped patients get better, and kept them from getting worse,” says Smyth.

Pennebaker says, “By writing, you put some structure and organization to those anxious feelings,” he explains. “It helps you to get past them.” His research indicates that suppressing negative, trauma-related thoughts compromises immune functioning and he found that those who write visit the doctor less often.

There is evidence that the nature of a person’s writing is key to its health effects, notes health psychology researcher Susan Lutgendorf, Ph.D., of the University of Iowa. In an intensive journaling study in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine, the results she showed suggests that people who relive upsetting events without focusing on meaning report poorer health than those who derive meaning from the writing. They are far worse than people who write about neutral events, while those who focus on meaning develop greater awareness of the positive aspects of a stressful experience. “You need focused thought as well as emotions,” says Lutgendorf. “An individual need to find meaning in a traumatic memory as well as to feel the related emotions to reap positive benefits from the writing exercise.”

However, Pennebaker says, “People who talk about things over and over in the same ways aren’t getting any better,” he says. “There has to be growth or change in the way they view their experiences.” In My memoir, Through It All: A Memoir of Grief and Loss, the lessons I learned was the reflections of the good the experience provided.
The language people use is evidence of their changed perspective. I provide a list of lessons I learned by reflecting on my experiences. Pennebaker found the more people use such cause-and-effect words like “because,” “realize” and “understand,” the more they appear to benefit from writing. Writing my memoir was a healing journey.

Pennebaker acknowledges that some personality types likely respond better to writing than others. Evidence suggests that people who are unable to speak freely benefit most. A host of other individual differences like handling stress, ability to self-regulate, and interpersonal relations—all restore harmony and balance and the effectiveness of writing.

The power of writing to heal lies in the mind of the writer, that’s where practitioners can help clients tap into their healing power. Writing helps them track their progress in their thinking. The benefits of expressing thoughts and feelings on paper can complement traditional therapy.

Therapeutic journaling is any writing or related expressive process used for psychological healing or growth—it can be a beneficial supporting therapy. When integrated into a treatment plan, journaling becomes a dynamic tool for personal growth and healing. Therapeutic journaling and the benefits from its use goes beyond talk therapy.

Heddy Keith, M. Ed is a certified journal writing instructor and retired language arts teacher. She offers Journal to the self-workshops and classes in the Milwaukee area. Contact her at Heddykeith51@att.net or call 414-241-2563 for more information.

Nothing Ever Goes Away

Nothing Ever Goes Away

Heddy Keith M.Ed., CH. CI

“Nothing Ever Goes Away Until It Teaches Us What We Need To Know” Pema Chodron

We can’t deny trauma, we can’t hide from it, we can’t refuse to face it.  It’s always there underneath the surface stored in our subconscious minds. Like weeds, we must pull them up from the root.

Some people won’t look at their problem; instead, they sweep it under the rug where it festers and becomes a lump that trips them. Because we don’t see it doesn’t mean that it’s not there. That experience makes automatic decisions based on past experiences.

Unless we commit to take some action or our issue will keep turning up, oftentimes more serious and difficult until we address it. We’ll have the same challenges until action is taken.

Start by:

  • Meditating for 20 minutes helps to relax and calm your mind and body.
  • Writing for 20 minutes releases the emotional pain and increases the immune system.
  • Call a trusted professional to discuss where you can begin your healing journey.
    • Take a walk for 20-30 minutes.
    • Seek the right help. Read a self-help book. Take a long bath.

Just begin the healing process. You’ll feel great. Every fiber of your being will shift, and your life will change.

Writing one’s feelings gradually eases emotional trauma. Writing therapeutically can take place individually or in a group and can be administered in person. Expressive writing has the potential to provide a ‘boost’ to the immune system, perhaps explaining the reduction in physician visits. One could argue that talk and writing differ in relative cerebral dominance. If language is more related to the right hemisphere, then writing may be more related to the left hemisphere. If this is the case, then writing might use or even stimulate parts of the brain that are not stimulated by talking.

Julie Gray, founder of Stories Without Borders notes that “People who have experienced trauma in their lives, whether or not they consider themselves writers, can benefit from creating narratives out of their stories. It is helpful to write it down, in other words, in safety, and in non-judgment. Trauma can be quite isolating. Those who have suffered need to understand how they feel and try to communicate that to others.”

“The effects of unresolved trauma can be devastating. It can affect our habits and outlook on life, leading to addictions and poor decision-making. It can take a toll on our family life and interpersonal relationships. It can trigger real physical pain, symptoms, and disease. It can lead to a range of self-destructive behaviors.” Peter A. Levine

Childhood Trauma Affects Adults Later in Life

By Heddy Keith M. Ed, CH, CI

Trauma is an experience that produces psychological injury or emotional pain. Traumatic experiences often occur during childhood. Both positive and negative experiences have a tremendous impact on future violence, victimization, perpetration, and lifelong health outcomes. These early experiences are important public issues.

Risky behaviors are linked to early traumatic experiences, such as chronic health conditions, low potential, and premature death in adults. Much of the research in this area is referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). As the number of ACEs increases so does the risk for these outcomes. Research indicates that victims of one assault are most likely to have other assaults. People who have been violent in one context are likely to be violent in another.

With these different forms comes sharing common consequences that have effects across the lifespan such as mental, emotional, physical or social problems. They may contribute to chronic health problems such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, lung disease, or diabetes. These children share familiar risks and protective factors

A risk factor is a characteristic that increases the likelihood of a person becoming a victim or perpetrator, it could be early aggressive behavior, lack of parental supervision, academic problems, undiagnosed mental health issues, peer substance use, drug availability, poverty, peer rejection, and child abuse or neglect.  The presence of a risk factor does not mean a person will always experience violence. Victims are never responsible for the harm inflicted upon them.

A protective factor is a characteristic which decreases the probability of a person becoming a victim or perpetrator, such as parental resilience, social connections, the social emotional competence of the children, as well as good parenting and child development skills, It provides a buffer against the risk.

Maltreatment of children includes all types of abuse and neglect of a child under the age of 18 by a parent, caregiver, or another person in a custodial role. There are five types of trauma:

 

  1. Physical
  2. Verbal
  3. Sexual
  4. Physical neglect
  5. Emotional neglect

An estimated 1 in 4 children has some form of child abuse or neglect in his or her lifetime. In 2015 about 1,670 children died nationwide from abuse or neglect. The total lifetime costs are estimated at $124 billion a year.

Today’s Youth is always in hyperarousal. Post and Present Trauma is ongoing chronic stress. “Hurt, people, hurt people.”

Anyone who has experienced, witnessed, read about, participated in, or heard about a tragic event on the radio, television, magazines, newspapers, or on social media has been traumatized.

A Harvard study found that with repeated trauma the hippocampus gets overloaded–fight or flight response in the brain begin to generalize. Youth are overloaded with stress hormones. Many modern-day teenagers:

  • Are always in fight or flight mode
  • Have trouble learning
  • Don’t trust adults.
  • Have anxiety can’t sleep.
  • Have trouble handling emotions.
  • Have stomach aches or headaches.
  • Have self-destructive behavior.
  • Are at risk of becoming victims or perpetrators and or turning to drugs and alcohol.

Trauma affects children. Some learn to suppress and protect themselves, by pretending it never happened. The mind suppresses it to survive the pain. The brain knows how to protect us. The child functions as usual. Memories start to come out gradually. There will come a day when the child or adult gets flashbacks or dreams. The brain says it’s time to deal with this; you’re ready.

The mind says, “I’m not going to let you deal with this trauma, but you will remember the smell, and you won’t like it.” The subconscious mind stores and records millions of bits of information.

“Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.” Pema Chodron

Classroom teachers see these behaviors every day in disruptive students, not knowing why they are behaving in such a way. Disruptive students not only shut down their learning process, but they also become an obstacle to other students who want to learn. Traumatized children suffering from multiple traumas need special attention.To Love and Lesso

Heddykeith, author of Through it All: A Memoir of Love and Loss, The Men I Chose To Love and Lessons Learned

HYPNOTHERAPY IS THE ANSWER TO WEIGHT LOSS

                                                                                                                   

Image Skip the diet just eat healthy

 

 

Whаt іѕ Hурnоthеrару?  

Hурnоthеrару іѕ a fоrm оf thеrару thаt іѕ соnduсtеd wіth thе hеlр оf hурnоѕіѕ, whісh іѕ a nаturаllу оссurrіng state оf mіnd thаt еvеrуоnе hаѕ еxреrіеnсеd аt оnе tіmе оr аnоthеr. Whеn уоu wаtсh a tеlеvіѕіоn рrоgrаm аnd “ѕрасе оut” tо thе роіnt thаt уоu аrе unаwаrе оf whаt оthеrѕ аrе ѕауіng аrоund уоu, уоu аrе іn a fоrm оf hурnоtіс trаnсе. Bу purposely рuttіng thе mіnd іn a hурnоtіс trаnсе аnd еѕtаblіѕhіng whаt іѕ rеfеrrеd tо аѕ “ѕеlесtіvе thіnkіng,” іt іѕ роѕѕіblе tо еnсоurаgе thе mіnd tо rеjесt lіmіtіng bеlіеfѕ thаt ѕtаnd bеtwееn уоu аnd your wеіght loss gоаlѕ.

Hоw Dоеѕ Hурnоthеrару Wеіght Lоѕѕ Wоrk?

Wеіght lоѕѕ саn be hаrd tо асhіеvе wіth аll thе dеmаndѕ mоdеrn lіfе makes оn реорlе. Nо wоndеr mеn, wоmеn аnd еvеn сhіldrеn аrе іnсrеаѕіnglу еаtіng on thе run. Thе ѕtаndаrd wеѕtеrn dіеt knоwn аррrорrіаtеlу аѕ S.A.D. іѕ hіgh іn ѕugаr, fаt, ѕіmрlе саrbоhуdrаtеѕ аnd оf соurѕе сhеmісаl аddіtіvеѕ. Thіѕ diet іѕ mаkіng реорlе fаt аnd trіggеrіng аn еріdеmіс оf dіаbеtеѕ аnd оthеr rеlаtеd іllnеѕѕеѕ. On tор оf thіѕ, реорlе аrе асtuаllу mоvіng lеѕѕ. Thе аvеrаgе реrѕоn іѕ buѕу аnd ѕtrеѕѕеd but іѕ nоt рhуѕісаllу еxеrсіѕіng еnоugh.

Strеѕѕ іѕ a ѕіgnіfісаnt fасtоr іn mаkіng рооr lіfеѕtуlе dесіѕіоnѕ аnd саn lеаd tо bаd hаbіtѕ. Individuals whо hаvе gаіnеd wеіght knоw thеу hаvе tо change whаt thеу аrе dоіng, but mоtіvаtіоn іѕ hаrd tо fіnd when thе рrеѕѕurе juѕt kеерѕ ріlіng оn. Thеу рrоbаblу wіѕh thаt ѕоmеbоdу еlѕе (wіth gооd dіеt аnd еxеrсіѕе hаbіtѕ) соuld lіvе іnѕіdе thеіr bоdу fоr a lіttlе whіlе tо hеlр gеt thіngѕ moving іn thе rіght dіrесtіоn. Thіѕ іѕ whеrе hурnоѕіѕ саn hеlр. Thаt nеw реrѕоn lіvіng іnѕіdе thеіr bоdу саn асtuаllу bе thеm!

Hурnоѕіѕ wоrkѕ аt a ѕubсоnѕсіоuѕ lеvеl bу dіrесtlу gіvіng ѕuggеѕtіоnѕ tо thе ѕubсоnѕсіоuѕ mіnd. Positive ѕuggеѕtіоnѕ that encourage wеіght lоѕѕ wоrk аt a ѕubсоnѕсіоuѕ lеvеl tо сrеаtе nеw bеlіеfѕ, vаluеѕ аnd hаbіtuаl thіnkіng ѕо that thе сlіеnt іѕ аblе tо nаturаllу mаkе hеаlthіеr dесіѕіоnѕ. Hурnоѕіѕ еnсоurаgеѕ a hеаlthу lіfеѕtуlе сhаngе whісh lеаdѕ tо nаturаl wеіght lоѕѕ. Thіѕ іѕ whу іt іѕ ѕо еffесtіvе. Dіеtѕ hаvе bееn ѕhоwn tо bе іnеffесtіvе іn thе lоng tеrm whеrеаѕ сhаngіng уоur dіеt аnd еxеrсіѕе hаbіtѕ реrmаnеntlу lеаdѕ tо роѕіtіvе wеіght lоѕѕ rеѕultѕ.

Hурnоѕіѕ ѕuggеѕtіоnѕ fоr wеіght lоѕѕ uѕuаllу іnсludе mоtіvаtіоn еnсоurаgеmеnt аnd соnfіdеnсе buіldіng ѕtаtеmеntѕ аѕ wеll аѕ specific dіrесtіоnѕ tо сrеаtе a hеаlthіеr lіfеѕtуlе. Hурnоѕіѕ ѕеѕѕіоnѕ аlѕо uѕuаllу use vіѕuаlіzаtіоn guіdаnсе tо hеlр thе сlіеnt ‘ѕее’ thеmѕеlvеѕ аt thеіr іdеаl wеіght аnd tо ‘fееl’ hоw grеаt thаt fееlѕ. Thіѕ ѕеtѕ thеm uр fоr success. If a реrѕоn саn believe thеу саn lоѕе wеіght, thеу саn. Unfоrtunаtеlу, mаnу people hаvе trіеd соuntlеѕѕ dіеtѕ аnd fаіlеd аnd, аѕ a rеѕult, thеу hаvе lоѕt соnfіdеnсе іn thеmѕеlvеѕ and іn thеіr аbіlіtу tо tаkе thе wеіght оff аnd kеер it оff. Hурnоѕіѕ fоr wеіght lоѕѕ fосuѕеѕ оn hоw іndіvіduаlѕ wіll fееl whеn thеу lоѕе thе wеіght, thеіr соmреtеnсу tо dо ѕо, аnd оn thе рrосеѕѕ оf сrеаtіng a nеw hеаlthу lіfеѕtуlе thаt thеу wіll еnjоу.

Whу Shоuld I Uѕе Hурnоthеrару tо Hеlр wіth Wеіght Lоѕѕ?

Thеrе are mаnу bеnеfіtѕ tо uѕіng hурnоthеrару tо аѕѕіѕt уоu wіth wеіght lоѕѕ. Fіrѕt, thоuѕаndѕ оf реорlе hаvе fоund ѕuссеѕѕ wіth hурnоthеrару аnd аrе аblе to lоѕе wеіght wіthоut еxреrіеnсіng thе lеvеl оf ѕuffеrіng thаt is оftеn аѕѕосіаtеd wіth dieting. Sесоnd, hурnоthеrару is nоt іnvаѕіvе оr роtеntіаllу hаrmful tо уоur hеаlth, whісh іѕ nоt thе саѕе wіth wеіght lоѕѕ ѕurgісаl рrосеdurеѕ. Fіnаllу, hурnоthеrару аlѕо сrеаtеѕ a long tеrm lіfе сhаngе, whісh mеаnѕ уоu wіll bе аblе tо bеаt уоur wеіght рrоblеmѕ аnd mаіntаіn thе rеѕultѕ thrоughоut уоur lіfеtіmе. Whеn іѕ hурnоthеrару useful?

Hурnоthеrару іѕ uѕеful whеn уоu hаvе a ѕресіfіс реrѕоnаl рrоblеm уоu wаnt tо ѕоlvе. Thе ѕоrt оf рrоblеmѕ thаt hypnotherapy саn bе аррlіеd tо іnсludе:

Phуѕісаl рrоblеmѕ

Hурnоthеrару саn hеlр wіth сhrоnіс раіn аnd muѕсulаr tеnѕіоn. It іѕ еffесtіvе bоth fоr rеlаxіng thе bоdу аnd аltеrіng thе wау thе brаіn реrсеіvеѕ раіn tо rеduсе іt’ѕ іntеnѕіtу.

Emоtіоnаl рrоblеmѕ

Thеѕе саn іnсludе fеаr аnd аnxіеtу; е.g. рhоbіаѕ, раnіс аttасkѕ, еxаm nеrvеѕ еtс, grіеf, аngеr, guіlt, ѕhаmе, lоw ѕеlf-еѕtееm аnd mаnу mоrе.

Bеhаvіоrаl рrоblеmѕ

Thеѕе саn іnсludе ѕmоkіng, оvеrеаtіng, drіnkіng tоо much аnd vаrіоuѕ оthеr kіndѕ оf аddісtіvе bеhаvіоur. It іѕ аlѕо роѕѕіblе tо hеlр wіth іnѕоmnіа аnd dіѕturbеd ѕlеер.

In gеnеrаl, hурnоthеrару рrоvіdеѕ a uѕеful соmрlеmеnt tо оthеr kіndѕ оf mеdісаl саrе. Yоu ѕhоuld сhесk саrеfullу аѕ tо whеthеr уоur hурnоthеrаріѕt іѕ mеdісаllу ԛuаlіfіеd аnd оnlу tаkе mеdісаl аdvісе frоm ԛuаlіfіеd рrоfеѕѕіоnаlѕ.

Hоw dоеѕ hурnоthеrару wоrk?

Hурnоthеrару wоrkѕ thrоugh thе uѕе оf hypnosis. Thіѕ іѕ thе рrосеѕѕ bу whісh thе hурnоthеrаріѕt hеlрѕ thе сlіеnt аttаіn a раrtісulаr ѕtаtе оf соnѕсіоuѕnеѕѕ called trаnсе.

All оf uѕ еxреrіеnсе аltеrеd ѕtаtеѕ оf соnѕсіоuѕnеѕѕ ѕuсh аѕ ѕlееріng оr dау drеаmіng еvеrу dау. Thе trаnсе ѕtаtе іѕ dіffеrеnt іn thаt іt hаѕ ѕресіаl рrореrtіеѕ. In аn оrdіnаrу ѕtаtе, реорlе аrе lіmіtеd іn thеіr ability tо rеѕроnd to ѕuggеѕtіоnѕ. Thеу mау fіnd іt hаrd tо соntrоl thеіr thоughtѕ, fееlіngѕ аnd bеhаvіоr. In раrtісulаr, іt іѕ dіffісult fоr thеm tо соntrоl thеіr unсоnѕсіоuѕ mіnd – thаt раrt оf thе mіnd thаt соntrоlѕ аutоmаtіс асtіvіtу ѕuсh аѕ еmоtіоnѕ аnd habits.

Call today for  a free phone consultation 414-241-2563.

Healthy Lifestyle Changes Can Save Your Life

Blood Pressure Demands the 3 C’s: Check, Change, Control.

BY JON CASWELL

 

When it comes to blood pressure, what you don’t know can definitely hurt you. Many of the 80 million American adults who have it don’t know they have it. It has no symptoms. It can only be reliably diagnosed by a healthcare professional using a blood pressure monitor. Once diagnosed, it can’t be cured; but it can be controlled, which requires daily attention. It’s rampant among African-Americans. Left undiagnosed, it can lead to strokes, heart attacks and kidney failure.

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Based on the premise that “healthier blood pressure sometimes takes a community,” the American Heart Association/ American Stroke Association created the Check. Change. Control. program. It uses health mentors to help people with high blood pressure do what they need to do to control it — eat right, be active, visit their doctor and take their medication. The mentors are local volunteers, sometimes family members, who are trained to encourage participants to monitor their blood pressure and stay consistent with their plan for controlling it.

If you don’t know your blood pressure, you can get it checked at no cost in many pharmacies, healthcare facilities and fire stations. And checking it once is not enough because blood pressure increases with age. If your blood pressure is above 120/80 mm Hg, the American Heart Association recommends getting your blood pressure checked by a doctor at least once every two years starting at age 20.

In addition to personal contact, the Check. Change. Control. program uses Heart360, which is a web-based tool to help track blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, physical activity and medication. It also makes suggestions about action plans, and helps participants connect with healthcare providers and mentors to share progress. Heart360 is like a personal hub that pulls together all the information you need for you and your doctor to be actively working to reach — and keep — your blood pressure at a healthy level.

Check. Change. Control. is based on research led by Dr. Kevin L. Thomas of Duke Clinical Research Institute in Durham, North Carolina. Dr. Thomas used a multipronged approach to reduce blood pressure among a group of patients of different ages, ethnicities and genders. This approach was used with 1,756 people, 75 percent of whom were African-American, grouped by the severity of their high blood pressure. Those with the lowest blood pressure levels (below 140/90) received the lowest level of intervention, a bimonthly automated reminder to enter their blood pressure measurements into Heart360. Those in the middle group (with a reading between 140/90 and 159/99) used Heart360 in addition to receiving lifestyle counseling and medication evaluation from physician assistants. Those with the highest blood pressure levels (above 159/99) received the most hands-on follow-up. In addition to the interventions in the other categories, this included an assigned community health coach who conducted home visits. These interventions increased the number of participants with healthy blood pressure by 12 percent. That’s about 210 people in six months who brought their blood pressure down to less than 140/90.

Because of this success, the AHA provided grants to 18 healthcare markets in 2012 to create pilot programs. Now, the Check. Change. Control. program has 90 programs in 60 markets, including Los Angeles, Houston and Philadelphia. As of June 2014, there were 20,720 people enrolled.

Knowing your numbers, reducing them if necessary and maintaining your program can help you avert catastrophic outcomes caused by high blood pressure. Sometimes, controlling it takes a community.

Enroll in Check. Change. Control.

If your community does not have Check. Change. Control. yet, don’t let that stop you from discovering and monitoring your blood pressure numbers. You can get your numbers at no cost at many places in your community, and you can enroll yourself in Heart360. AHA has extensive blood pressure information online.

Your blood pressure is serious business, so get serious about it.

Kenneth Mathews describes things he has done to live a healthier life.

10 Foods Proven to Burn Fat

By: Anna Fleet

Maybe you already knew that particular foods contain high thermogenic effect, which essentially means they help to boost your metabolism. However, the majority of the population has no idea exactly what foods burn calories as you chew, or contain particular nutrients and compounds that fuel your body’s internal metabolic furnace and help you literally melt the calories you consume far more quickly.

Here are ten foods that nutritionists credit with helping you burn fat…

  1. Hot Peppers

image red hot chili peppersChili peppers sure do pack quite a bunch! They have a compound called “capsaicin” that gives them their zip and heats up the body, firing up your metabolism and helping you burn off excess calories. Capsaicin is present in fresh, pickled and dry peppers, along with flaked pepper spices like cayenne and red chilies. Weight loss experts recommend adding them to your soups, sauces, and rice dishes to boost your diet’s automatic fat-burning potential.

If you don’t like spicy food, you can still benefit from chili peppers. A recent University of California study found that peppers with a compound called dihydrocapsiate also helped st udy participants burn fat. Dihydrocapsiate is a non-burning (i.e. non-spicy) form of capsaicin which incr eases your body’s ability to oxidize fat. Researchers recommend making it a regular part of your low-calorie diet if you’re not a fan of spicy dishes – this will help you benefit from the natural fat-burning properties of chili peppers without setting your mouth on fire.

  1. Green Tea

Image green-teaGreen tea contains a substance known as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has been scientifically proven to provide your metabolism with a temporary boost. EGCG is an antioxidant which helps your body make better use of a naturally occurring hormone and neurotransmitter called nor-epinephrine. The main metabolism effect of nor-epinephrine is that it sends signals to your body, telling it to start breaking down fat cells and using their stored energy.

While green tea doesn’t contain a lot of caffeine, it does have some – about 25 to 50 milligrams per cup, on average. Caffeine synergizes with nor-epinephrine, enhancing its fat-burning effects. One recent study showed that men who took dietary supplements containing EGCG burned 17 percent more fat by exercising than men who didn’t. If you’re regularly exercising and eating a low-calorie diet, incorporate hot or cold green tea into your diet to kick your fat-burning regimen into overdrive

  1. Oats

Oats are very high in image cupof oatmealfiber, and when your body needs to break down fiber-rich whole foods, it burns up to twice as many calories during the digestion process. Dietary fiber also helps regulate your appetite, giving you a lasting feeling of satiation and helping ward off hunger throughout the day. This makes you less likely to reach for sugary or fatty snacks, especially in the hours between breakfast and lunch.

Experts recommend eating oatmeal for breakfast, but watch out if you’re buying quick-cooking or instant oatmeal. Many of these products contain added sugar, which will effectively neutralize its healthy effects. Instead, reach for unsweetened whole-grain oats, and add some honey or fresh fruit to boost its flavor appeal. Pair it with protein-rich nuts and you’ll have one of the healthiest breakfasts on the planet. You can also sprinkle oat bran on your soups, salads and stir fry dishes to give your body an internal workout!

  1. Grapefruit

Chances are you’ve heard that one of timage grapefruit white backgroundhe best fat-burning breakfasts you can eat is half a grapefruit with a cup of black coffee. This can be a great start to your day, especially if you follow it up a couple of hours later with a healthy “second breakfast,” containing fiber-rich, high-protein foods. Grapefruit helps your body dissolve fat and cholesterol, which fighting hardening of the arteries (a process known as “arteriosclerosis”).

A medium-sized grapefruit has only 74 calories, but packs a whopping 15 grams of belly-filling pectin fiber. This fiber helps you feel full for a longer period of time, regulating hunger levels throughout the day and making you less likely to snack between meals. Grapefruit it also very high in both vitamin C and potassium, and it contains absolutely no fat and no sodium. Add it to your breakfast regimen and watch your waistline shrink!

  1. Lean Turkey or Chicken

image lean Chicken-Breasts2Turkey and chicken are both very lean sources of protein, and both have what is known in dietary circles as a “high thermogenic effect.” In essence, this means that it fires up your body’s internal furnace during the digestion process, sending your metabolism into overdrive. Because turkey and chicken are both very low in fat, they are also much lower in calories than fattier meats like beef and pork. It’s a win-win situation for your body, which gets all the nutrients and benefits of meat from far fewer calories, all while burning more energy during digestion.

However, turkey and chicken both come with an important caveat. If you want to maximize the fat-burning potential of these meats, it’s important to take the skin off. Poultry skin is very high in fat, and it will significantly alter the nutrition content of the meat. Get rid of it, and flavor the meat with spices or low-calorie, low-sugar sauces.

  1. Lentils

Red bean mixed congee

By now, you’re probably noticing a trend – the higher a food’s protein content, the better it is for weight loss. Your body has to spend more calories breaking down protein, making it automatically better for burning fat, and it also takes your body longer to digest protein. This leaves you feeling fuller for a longer period of time, and studies have shown that people eating high-protein diets consume far less calories during an average day than people on lower-protein diets.

Lentils are an excellent choice because they are very high in protein, yet very low in fat. In fact, they have one of the lowest fat contents of any protein-rich food. A single serving of lentils also provides for 35 percent of your daily iron needs. Lentils are also low in sodium and very high in potassium. Few foods offer the nutritional punch of low-calorie lentils. Add them to your soup recipes, or put them in regular rotation as a side dish.

  1. Fish

Certain types of fiimage grilled salmonsh are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which promote fat loss by kicking your metabolism into high gear. The dietary action of omega-3 fatty acids is similar to that of protein – it forces your body to naturally burn more calories while helping you keep your appetite in check throughout the day. Fish is a great choice at lunchtime; the earlier in the day you eat it, the longer you will benefit from its appetite-regulating properties.

Fish also reduces your risk of heart disease, reduces cholesterol, and can help relieve arthritis and joint inflammation symptoms. A can of water-packed tuna has about 90 to 120 calories, which isn’t much considering its nutritive benefits. Salmon, mackerel and albacore tuna are all very high in omega-3 fatty acids, which may also help protect your brain and boost your cognitive capabilities. Just watch out for high mercury content; choose organic or sustainable sourced products rather than their mass-produced counterparts.

  1. Berries

Berries are very rich in antioxidants, and getting more antioxidants from natural sources is a great way to help boost your metabolism. The antioxidants contained in berries promote better blood flow, which helps your body build stronger muscles. The more muscle your body has, the more calories it will burn – even when you’re at rest. Invest some time in iimage basket-of-berriesmproving your fat-to-muscle ratio and you’ll benefit from passive calorie burning and weight loss.

Another benefit of berries is that they are very low in calories. Strawberries are very low in calories, with only about 45 per cup. Raspberries, blackberries and blueberries all range between 60 and 80 calories per cup, and all four types of berries help keep your blood pressure down. This reduces your risk of heart disease and heart attacks – another reason to add berries to your oatmeal or whole-grain breakfast cereal. They’re also one of the best snacks you can eat.

  1. Apples

Red Apples with green leaf on white. This file is cleaned, retouched and contains clipping path.

You already know that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” but apples can also help keep the calories away as well. A few crispy bites is a safe way to elevate your blood glucose (blood sugar) levels, providing you with a nutrient-rich, low-calorie source of satisfying energy. A medium-sized apple has just 80 calories, with all kinds of antioxidants and absolutely no sodium, saturated fat or cholesterol. Like berries, apples make a great midday snack.

Given that apples are also rich in antioxidants, they can help improve your body’s blood flow and help you build healthier, stronger muscles. As a general rule of thumb, choose apples with darker skins more often. The darker an apple’s skin, the richer it is in antioxidants, and the stronger its fat-burning effects will be. However, if you strongly prefer Granny Smith or golden delicious apples, rest easy – these varieties also pack a strong antioxidant punch.

  1. Coffee

Sure, caffeine has its drawbacks – excessive consumption can cause an elevated heart rate while potentially image cup of coffeetriggering anxiety and insomnia. However, moderate coffee drinkers can take solace in the fact that their morning cup of java provides a big metabolic boost, meaning that this stimulant naturally speeds up your metabolism and helps you burn more calories than normal. It also helps get you up and moving more quickly in the morning, providing your energy levels with a helpful push in the right direction.

In addition to moderating consumption, you should also be careful about what you add to your coffee. Piling on the sugar and heavy cream will turn this metabolism-boosting beverage into a fat trap. Instead, use low-fat milk and sweeteners instead of sugar, or avoid sweetening it altogether. Coffee is healthiest when it’s consumed black, so if you can make that transition, your body will thank you for it.

 

6 FOODS THAT TURN INTO BELLY FAT

You know how sappy movies go right to your heart? And champagne goes right to your head? And tax day goes right to your wallet? Well, some foods go right to your gut and cause nearly instant fat gain, right where you don’t want it.

They call this type of weight gain “deep fat tissue,” and it leads to deeply felt embarrassment when it comes time to strip down for the neighborhood pool party. It also leads to some more serious issues—heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s among them.

Where your body stores calories depends on your hormones, and some foods trigger just the exact right hormonal reaction—they hit you in the gut like a Dear John letter. Fortunately, new research in Zero Belly Diet, the New York Times bestseller from Abs Diet author David Zinczenko, reveals the six most common “insta-belly” foods, and offers some ingenious alternatives to help you indulge without the bulge.

  • POTATO CHIPSPotato chips on a white background.
    In the contest to find the very worst possible food for your belly, Harvard researchers believe they have a winner. It’s not just that they’re saturated with saturated fat, causing abdominal fat gain. It’s not just that they’re crusted with salt, causing mid-level bloat. It’s not even a pure calorie play—there are plenty of more caloric snacks out there. What makes potato chips so epically bad for your belly is not what they have, but what they lack: the ability to make you feel satisfied. A handful of chips can turn into a big empty bag in no time simply because our bodies expect us to make them happy when we eat food. Daily chip consumption alone was responsible for adding nearly two pounds of flab to study participants’ frame every four years. That means if you cut out chips, you would lose more than half a pound of fat directly from your belly, even if you changed nothing else about your diet.

Eat This Instead: Nip your salty cravings in the bud with Beanitos, a chip made from navy beans, brown rice, oils and spices. This snack time favorite has a texture and flavor reminiscent of traditional nachos, but far less saturated fat.

  • DIET SODA

If you want to get your beach boddiet soda imagey back, you should cut out sugary beverages and replace them with diet versions, right? Wrong.

Recent studies have found an association between the consumption of diet sodas and a wider waist circumference. What’s more, diet soda drinkers have a higher percentage of belly flab than those who don’t sip the beverage, a study in the journal Obesity found. Why? Researchers think diet soda drinkers may overestimate how many calories they’re “saving,” and then overeat.

Drink This Instead: White Tea. This brew blocks the formation of new fat cells and helps the body break down stored fat, according a Nutrition and Metabolism study. That means that even when you overindulge; it’s harder for your body to store the excess calories in your body. And if you want an added weight loss boost, switch to one of the magical 4 Teas That Melt Fat Fast.

  • PIZZA

Pizza image

A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips? How about this: A night at the Hut, a lifetime in the gut.

In fact, pizza is the second biggest contributor of saturated fat to the American diet (just below cheese itself), and most slices serve up half a day’s worth of the artery clogger. Researchers have found that unlike other fats, the saturated variety is the most likely to be stored in the stomach.

 

Eat This Instead: Bruschetta. All the crusty, tomatoey flavor, not of the broken zippers. Discover the recipe, and the game-changing “75/25” rule that shows How Maria Menounos dropped 40 pounds—and kept it off!

  • FRENCH FRIES

French fries image                    s

Any fat-laden carb fest will make you gain weight, but there’s something almost magical about the effect of fried spuds on your body’s fat-storage system–and by magical, we mean Voldemort, not Potter. One 20-year Harvard study found that people who ate fries regularly gained more than three pounds of body weight every four years; over the course of the study, the French fry eaters gained 15 pounds of belly flab from fries alone!

Eat This Instead: Homemade sweet potato fries. Slice a sweet potato lengthwise into strips, top with a few spritzes of coconut-oil cooking spray (a fat less apt to be stored as flab than butter or lard), salt, pepper and garlic powder, and pop them into the oven on 350 degrees F until they’re crispy. When dining out, ask for a side salad and a vinegar-based dressing in lieu of the fries that comes with your meal. And for the full list of what to eat for rapid weight loss, check out these essential 14 Ways to Lose Your Belly in 14 Days!

  • RIB-EYE STEAK

ribeye steak image

Wait—don’t toss your steak knife at us yet! Studies show that eating the right cuts of steak can actually help whittle your middle. But rib-eye, along with T-bone and New York Strip, is one of the three fattiest cuts known to man or cow; in a study by Chinese researchers, consuming a diet rich in fatty, fresh red meat is positively associated with abdominal obesity and larger waist circumference.

Eat This Instead: Choose the right steak and you’ll reap several health benefits. Find out which to buy in the essential list of ab-defining 12 Foods Personal Trainers Swear By.

  • FRUIT JUICE

Concentrated fruit juice image

It’s natural! It’s packed with Vitamin C! It comes from Florida! What could be wrong? Well, while 100 percent fruit juice is a better pick than sugary drinks like Sunny D, even the all-natural stuff still packs up to 36 grams of sugar per cup—or about what you’d get from popping 4 Krispy Kreme glazed donuts into a blender and hitting frappe. What’s more, most of the sweetness in juice comes from fructose, a type of sugar associated with the development of visceral adipose tissue—yep, that’s belly fat.

Drink This Instead: Trick your belly into shrinking itself by filling your glass with some refreshing spa water. Just add fresh sliced fruit like oranges and grapefruit to plain ol’ H20 and chill. The key is to keep the peels on: citrus peels are rich in the antioxidant d-limonene, a powerful compound that helps flush out toxins from the body and allow it to release stored visceral fat.

 

Hypnotherapy Opens Mind to Healthy Changes

Kelly Moyer , Staff Reporter The Reflector

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Granted, it’s only been about 18 hours, but I think the hypnosis is working.

You see, most mornings, I wake up begging my two husky pups for a 20-minute reprieve before they jump on my head and start licking my face. This morning, however, I woke up feeling refreshed, let the dogs out and found myself in the kitchen, making a gigantic salad for lunch.

That in itself isn’t too stunning, but then, a few hours later, I was at work, reaching for my coffee, when I realized: Oh, my goodness. I forgot to stop for coffee this morning! This doesn’t happen. I have a routine. I drop the kid at school, swing around the block, get a cup of Stump town’s finest (and usually a scone for good measure), and then head for the highway. But this morning I dropped the kid and hopped on I-205 north. No coffee! No scone! I did, however, have a banana and two tiny tangelos with me. And I don’t remember bringing fruit out of the house. See? The hypnosis, designed to help me make healthier food choices, is working.

It all started with a story idea. I had always been interested in hypnotherapy – had known people who lost weight or quit smoking or had pain-free births through hypnosis – and I wondered if hypnosis could help me conquer some unhealthy eating habits. I had even listened to some pre-recorded hypnotic videos on YouTube, but I had never actually visited an actual hypnotherapist.

Over the past few months, however, I began to notice that Battle Ground seems to have a good number of hypnotherapists: There are three different therapists located on Main Street alone. I knew that we had a health-focused section coming up in The Reflector, and thought now was the perfect time to experience hypnosis and write an article about its various health benefits. I pitched the idea to my editor and made a few calls. Before I knew it, I was reclining on a cozy leather chair in hypnotherapist David Hill’s Battle Ground office, getting ready for my first session.

“I’m going to bore your conscious mind,” Hill told me before I relaxed into the chair. “We want to get your conscious filter out of the way.”

Hill’s voice was melodic, the chair was super comfortable and my mind, normally spinning at full speed with deadlines and story ideas and parenting stuff and plans for the upcoming weekend, finally started to calm down. I remember concentrating on my breathing and that there was a staircase and a garden with a stream running through it, but I think I must have fallen asleep during our session. When I came out of the hypnotic trance, I felt like I’d been in the chair for maybe 15 or 20 minutes, but Hill said it was more like 45 minutes.

“You went into deep alpha,” Hill told me. “That’s very good.”

Going into deep alpha basically means that I had a bit of a nap. My conscious mind went away for 45 minutes, giving Hill access to my subconscious mind. The subconscious is where the magic happens, where Hill’s suggestions – eat smaller portions, reach for nutrient-rich foods like veggies, nuts and seeds, drink more water and get more exercise – could find a foothold.

images healthy eating defined

I only had one session, and it wasn’t as long as Hill’s regular hypnosis sessions, which often last 90 minutes to two hours, but I still feel like the hypnosis affected my subconscious thoughts, at least for one day.

Hill, a certified counselor and hypnotherapist who has been practicing since the 1980s, says most clients tend to need more than one session.

“Some do have a successful outcome with one session, but it all depends on the individual,” Hill says. “Most need more than one session. Some need five or six, or more. It really just depends on the situation.”

Will I go back? Probably, I’ve been trying to make healthier decisions most of my life, but there’s always been something holding me back – that “devil on my shoulder” that tells me to reach for the doughnuts before broccoli, and convinces me that watching a movie on the couch is way more fun than going to yoga class. I think hypnotherapy might be the “thing” that finally conquers that shoulder devil.

So what is hypnosis, exactly?

Here’s how the Mayo Clinic describes it: “Hypnotherapy is a trance-like state in which you have heightened focus and concentration. Hypnosis is usually done with the help of a therapist using verbal repetition and mental images. Hypnosis can be used to help you gain control over undesired behaviors or to help you cope better with anxiety or pain.”

Many people associate hypnosis with magic shows, carnival acts or old Vincent Price movies, but hypnosis has been accepted as a legitimate health therapy for decades. In fact, the National Institutes of Health studied the therapy and found that hypnosis may be useful for treating chronic pain, reducing fear and anxiety, improving the quality of life for cancer patients and controlling bleeding during surgical and dental procedures.

The three Battle Ground hypnotherapists that contributed to this article – Hill, along with Debbie DeFreece and Connie Osborne – all say that hypnotherapy tends to be “a last resort” for many of their clients.

“Typically, people don’t go to see a hypnotherapist until they’ve tried everything else,” says DeFreece, of Absolutra Hypnotherapy in Old Town Battle Ground. “There have been misconceptions about hypnosis, mainly, I believe, because people think about the stage hypnosis … but hypnotherapy can help with so many things. I’ve seen that it’s effective for weight loss, anxiety, depression, nail biting, sports enhancement, test taking … really; it helps with anything that you want to change. Hypnosis gets to the root of why that change hasn’t been happening for someone.”

Hill knows exactly what it’s like to find hypnotherapy as “a last resort.” As a young man, Hill had crashed his car and suffered from intense neck pain. He tried everything short of surgery for the better part of a decade before finding a hypnotherapist in Philadelphia, PA, who worked with clients seeking pain relief.

“I tried everything,” Hill says. “I went to neurosurgeons, chiropractors … I even tried Rolfing.”

After his sessions with a hypnotherapist left him pain free for the first time in 10 years, Hill knew he had found his calling. He became a certified counselor and hypnotherapist and has been practicing in Washington State since the late 1980s. He’s been practicing out of his Battle Ground Hypnotherapy office for the past seven years. In that time, he’s treated clients for a range of issues, including weight management, stress relief, smoking cessation and addiction problems, but the majority of his clients are seeking pain relief.

“I’m a last resort for most people,” Hill says. “Most of my clients have chronic pain they’ve been to multiple doctors, have had surgeries and are on pain medications. Most of them come to me after they’ve tried everything else.”

Hill says many of his clients are shocked by how much better they feel after just one hypnosis session. Although it typically takes five or more sessions to become pain free, Hill says many clients feel vast improvements after the first session.

Other hypnotherapists report similarly effective results with their clients.

Connie Osborne, a certified hypnotherapist and mental health counselor, who works out of her  aNewYouHypnosis business in Old Town Battle Ground, says she finds hypnosis to be extremely effective for helping clients improve their overall health through weight management and stress relief.

“I worked with a hypnotherapist on my weight issues and lost about 40 pounds,” Osborne says. “I’ve been able to keep it off through hypnosis. Now I do a 12-week weight management program for my clients and it’s been very successful. My clients even took weight off during the holidays.”

Osborne says she came to hypnosis through her training as a mental health counselor.

“I had worked as a school counselor and was working with at-risk college students who were low income and maybe had a disability or were first-generation college students,” Osborne says. “I would use every tool in my toolbox to help these students, but there were some who just couldn’t seem to get over the hump. … Hypnosis was the one tool I had that could help them.”

DeFreece, who runs the Absolutra Hypnotherapy & NLP Center in downtown Battle Ground, discovered hypnosis about 15 years ago. At that time, DeFreece worked a high-stress job, running a marketing company that helped big-name clients like Hewlett Packard.

“I was under pretty high stress. My husband encouraged me to see a hypnotherapist, to work through the stress and figure out why I wasn’t sleeping well at night,” DeFreece recalls. “So I found a hypnotherapist … and it was life changing for me. I loved it. And I decided that I wanted to do something new for my life.”

Switching from the high-stress world of marketing to healing wasn’t easy, but DeFreece says she loves helping clients find their way through major life changes.

“Hypnosis helps people change their perception about things,” DeFreece says. “And some people are nervous. They don’t want to look at things that have caused them pain in the past, to bring up those painful emotions, but I tell them that it doesn’t have to be painful. In hypnotherapy we can look at a situation and reframe it in a way that feels good. You can move on, move away from the painful feelings and make the change you want to make.”