Guided Imagery Therapy May 14, 2016 14:55:46 GMT
Post by sparklekaz on May 14, 2016 14:55:46 GMT
Guided imagery is a traditional mind-body technique that is also considered a form of hypnosis. Visualization and guided imagery offer tools to direct one’s concentration on images held in the mind's eye. These therapies take advantage of the connection between the visual brain and the involuntary nervous system. When this portion of the brain (the visual cortex at the back of the head) is activated, without receiving direct input from the eyes, it can influence physical and emotional states. This, in turn, can help elicit physiological changes in the body, including therapeutic goals.
What is this therapy used for?
Because guided imagery is a mind-body therapy, any stress-related health concern, including high blood pressure, pain related to muscle tension, insomnia, and anxiety or depression, may be alleviated via this approach. Associated conditions, such as skin rashes or irritable bowel syndrome, are also amenable to guided imagery. It has been shown to be beneficial in treating autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and Crohns disease, and can be useful to alleviate chronic allergies, hives and asthma.
What should one expect on a visit to a practitioner of guided imagery?
Guided imagery can be learned from books, self-help tapes, CDs, DVDs or in an interactive format in the presence of a licensed practitioner who will guide you through these techniques. Initially, guided imagery involves achieving a state of relaxation. To attain this, most clients begin by lying down or sitting in a comfortable chair, loosening any tight fitting clothes, and disabling common distractions, including televisions, cell phones and computers. Practitioners often have a room that facilitates this process. After a client gets comfortable, breathing techniques, music, progressive muscle relaxation or a guided induction is often used to help foster a state of deep calm.
Are there any side effects or indications where guided imagery should be avoided?
There are no known contraindications for using guided imagery. This is not a technique, however, that should be incorporated into patient care when a client is uncomfortable about using it for personal or spiritual reasons. It is also very important to remember that Mind-body approaches should be used in conjunction with, and not in place of, indicated physical therapies.
For some people who have never tried guided imagery or hypnosis, the idea of getting deeply relaxed or going into a hypnotic trance may seem frightening. But the fact is that we’ve all experienced trance states in everyday life: daydreaming, watching a movie, driving home on autopilot, or practicing meditation or other relaxation techniques. Essentially, trance is simply an altered state of consciousness marked by decreased scope and increased intensity of awareness. What distinguishes guided imagery and other forms of hypnosis is that it involves a deliberate choice to enter this state of consciousness for a goal beyond relaxation: to focus your concentration and use suggestion to promote healing.
A person in trance is always under control, just as someone who is daydreaming can decide to go on or stop at any time. While a practitioner serves as a teacher or guide, the only person who can allow the shift in consciousness is you, using the latent potential of your own mind. Therefore, all hypnosis/imagery is self-hypnosis/imagery. It is the self-directed aspect of this therapy that many people and therapists find so appealing. It is as believed that people do best, when they have an understanding and control over the therapies that they use for healing.