Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Often known as IBS, Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a condition of the digestive system

IBS can cause a variety of uncomfortable symptoms including stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation. It is thought to affect up to one in five people at some point during their lifetime.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Studies have found that around twice as many women are affected by IBS as men. The exact cause is unknown, but it is thought to be related to increased sensitivity of the digestive system and problems with digestion. This means that a person may be more sensitive to gut-related pain or discomfort and they may experience constipation or diarrhoea as food passes through the digestive system too quickly or too slowly. It is believed that psychological factors such as stress or anxiety may play a part in IBS.

Which therapy?

Although there is currently no known cure for IBS, there are a number of therapies, dietary and lifestyle changes that can help to reduce or manage the symptoms. Hypnotherapy is now recognised as a possible treatment for IBS by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and clinical studies have found hypnotherapy to be an effective treatment, by using relaxation, visualisation and hypnosis to teach relaxation and pain control techniques, manage stress and increase confidence.

What to expect

Studies conducted by the University Hospital of South Manchester originally used a 12 session programme for patients with IBS, however everyone responds to therapy differently and so the number of sessions will vary from person to person. Your motivation and participation also play a key part in your therapy, especially with listening to CDs or MP3s and carrying out other therapeutic tasks between sessions. Most people find between 4 to 8 sessions helpful for IBS and sometimes further sessions may be required.

Further information

Further information about costs and sessions can be found on the Frequently Asked Questions page.

Important information

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can only be diagnosed by a medical professional. If you have any doubts or concerns about your symptoms, you must see your doctor. You will need a confirmed diagnosis of IBS from your doctor before starting any hypnotherapy sessions.

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