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 Therapy in the hypnosis trance state

Bruni Brewin JP

Australian Hypnotherapists Association -

President Emeritus – AHA (Life)

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- Depression-Hypnosis -

The first is endogenous depression that is the result of illness or profound chemical changes in the body causing depression that needs to be treated by medication and will be dealt elsewhere.  

The second kind of depression is called reactive depression that is the result of a person experiencing trauma or loss which then activates the depressive symptoms and will be the topic of this article.

Below are some of the things you will read about –

  * What is Trauma, and what types of

     trauma are there?

   * What is Loss, and what types of Loss

     are there?  

  * How do these things affect us?

  * What can you do about it?


Have a look at the article below and see if it relates to things that have happened to you.

A traumatic or loss experience has been known to cause depression. Depression is among one of the world's 10 most common health disorders. Medical science has now identified two kinds of basic depression.

Whether the issues arose as psychological reactions to a situation or are due to a physical condition is immaterial. Each person suffering from depression can benefit from counselling with a therapist (such as a counsellor or hypnotherapist) trained to guide people through the experience.  

Below are some of the most common questions people ask about trauma and loss:

What is Trauma?

Trauma is when something has happened to you or you saw something traumatic happening to someone else, and at the time it happened, you felt very threatened and unsafe or helpless.   Memories of the event can bring up feelings of helplessness, fear, even horror – just like you are reliving the original ordeal all over again.

These feelings can sometimes continue long after what happened (the traumatic incident or incidents that made you feel unsafe initially), and can eventually lead to feelings of depression.  This is what is called reactive depression.  In other words, the depression only came about after something happened to you.  In some cases when people still have these reactions long after what caused the initial trauma, then they may have what is commonly known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

For the feelings (symptoms) to be diagnosed as PTSD, a person would be displaying a number of reactions that come from the original trauma (the traumatic thing or things that made them feel unsafe).  For example, re-experiencing what happened in their mind and avoiding anything that may remind them of what happened, and this can cause them to have sleeping problems and symptoms of jumpiness or lack of energy etc. these are all part of the symptoms of PTSD.  

Many events that adults may not see as traumatic are experienced by children as traumatic. In fact, many adults do not realize that what to them are seemingly harmless events may be very traumatic for a child. For example hospitalisation; a child with a broken leg may assume that her/his leg cannot be fixed, yet adults may be unaware that the child is even imagining such a thing.

Note* these feelings and reactions can also occur without any obvious link to an unsafe happening.

If you have these reactions or feelings, and have never had them medically checked out, it is highly recommended that you contact your health practitioner who can do that for you.

What types of Traumas are there?

Traumas are varied and numerous. There are -

And there may be others we may have omitted to list here.

What is Loss?

What types of Loss are there?

            nursing home)

And there may be others we may have omitted to list here

How do these things affect us?

Most of us don’t necessarily recognise that some of the trauma or loss incidents mentioned above, that happened in our distant or recent past, could be linked to how we feel today.  Intellectually we may have come to terms with them but emotionally they may still be effecting us. We push these feelings down and try to just get on with life.  However the feelings are still inside and we may find that they show themselves in other ways, such as by us having problems with –

  And there may be others we may have omitted to list here.

Reactive depression is especially common in Australian women mainly because Australia is comprised of a wide ethnic mix of people resulting in women's liberation being years behind countries such as North America and Europe. In Australia, some girls as they grow up are sent double messages.  Girls are told they can be or achieve anything yet once they venture out into society they soon find out that they are still seen by society as of less social, work, economic, religious and political importance. This has resulted in some women believing that to survive they should not pursue power over their own lives.  This loss of their belief that they can be anything they want to be results in a loss of self image and has resulted in many women having low self esteem and feeling depressed.   

What can you do about it?

If you have had any of the above problems for any length of time, it would be advisable for you to contact your health practitioner and get a check up.  If you have experienced any trauma or loss similar to those mentioned above, don’t forget to mention this to your doctor.    



             with your concerns.

            after a trauma or loss.

How I deal with this issue in Hypnosis?  Click here


Beck, A.T. (1973) The Diagnosis & Management of Depression. Uni.of Pennsylvania, USA

Center for Disease Control. Coping With a Traumatic Event: Information for Health

Professionals. Leaflet.  

Crasilneck, H. B & Hall, J. A. (1985) Clinical Hypnosis: Principles and Applications:

Second Edition. Allyn & Bacon, USA
     Greer, G. (1971) The Female Eunuch. Paladin Grafton Books, London   

Horlick, N. (1997) Can You Have It All? Macmillan, London
     Hornyak, L. M, & Green, J. P, (2000) Healing from Within: The Use of Hypnosis in

Women's Health Care. American Psychological Association, USA  

O'Keefe T. (2006) Women and Depression Conference, 6-9 April, 2006, Sydney, Australia