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Marisa Farrell ³Choose a medical condition that interests you and research it.

Write about the possible uses if hypnosis in the treatment of the condition as you see them Asthma is a very common chronic obstructive condition that affects the airways. The airway obstruction in asthma is usually reversible; however, if left untreated, asthma can result in chronic inflammatio n of the lungs and irreversible obstruction. Constriction and inflammation cause narrowing of the airways often result in symptoms such as wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, or shortness of breath. When a person with asthma comes into contact with something that irritates their airways the muscles around the walls of the airways tighten so that the airways become narrower and the lin ing of the airways becomes inflamed and starts to swell. Quite often sticky mucus or phlegm builds up which can further narrow the airways making it difficult to breath and manifesting into the symptoms of asthma. Although there is currently no cure for asthma, there are some excellent medicines available to help sufferers control their condition. However, these medicines are not without their side effects. With some 5.4 million sufferers in the United Kingdom alone (including 1.1 million children) and around 20 million in the United States, asthma is clearly a serious condition that demands attention. It is hardly surprising therefore that many asthmatics are interested in whether treatments and therapies such as yoga, acupuncture, homeopathy and hypno sis can help them combat and cure the symptoms of asthma. This essay will discuss the possible role that hypnosis can play in treating certain asthma sufferers. It will consider the psychological and physical benefits of hypnosis when compared to traditional medicines, and determine whether hypnosis can be regarded as a viable alternative to prescribed medicines, or whether it is merely another complimentary therapy. Before we can decipher the possible benefits of using hypnosis to treat asthma, we need to consider the traditional medicines being prescribed by doctors. Chief amongst these are reliever inhalers, preventer inhalers and steroid tablets. Reliever inhalers are medicines that are taken immediately to relieve asthma symptoms as they quickly relax the muscles surrounding the narrowed airways. This allows the airways to open wider, making it easier to breathe again . Preventer inhalers control the swelling and inflammation in the airways, stopping them from being so sensitive and reducing the risk of severe attacks. On the downside, the protective effect builds up over a period of time so they need to be taken every d ay even when you are feeling unwell. Furthermore, preventers do not give immediate or quick relief when you are breathless but instea d they reduce long-term inflammation. Lastly those with severe symptoms of asthma may be prescribed steroid tablets. Steroid tablets work quickly and powerfully to help to calm your inflamed airways. In acute asthma drug treatment is essential and life -saving. Short courses of steroid tablets are also used to treat acute asthma attacks and are used for essential emergency treatment of asthma attacks. In order to keep the steroid dose as low as possible, some patients will continue to take preventer med icines at the same time as taking steroid tablets.

cataract development in the elderly and osteoporosis. eliminate their condition. weather conditions. Children should be monitored clo sely if they are taking preventative medicines as long term usage has been linked with in hibiting growth and the occurrence of mood swings. Some relievers can temporarily increase your heartbeat or give you mild muscle shakes. For more than forty years research studies have indicated that hypnotherapy can be an effective means of helping asthmatic patients control. fumes or certain foods. However they generally wear off within a few minutes or a few hours at most. This is not always the case and sometimes the condition is categorised into ³extrinsic´ and ³intrinsic´ asthmas. People with asth ma may become attuned to the warning signals as frequently it is at an unconscious level t hat they first ³spot the signs´. Although this is highly debateable. Relievers are generally a safe and effective medicine and have ve ry few side effects. This is where hypnotherapy can be extremely beneficial as it can help not least by altering the patients¶ expectation and developing a deeply ingrained understanding that they hav e the means to remain calm and bring their breathing back into control. It should be the therapists aim to reduce tension and anxiety as well as to restore th e patient¶s self confidence and coping abilities. insomnia.´ This is because as many patients know. for long periods of time can result serious side effects.With the right treatment most people wi th asthma can lead normal lives however as with everything exists the possibility of side effects. A good time to consider the introduction of self -hypnosis is ideally when a firm diagnosis of asthma has been made and when long-time steroid maintenance . In essence hypnotherapy patients can help asthma sufferers reduce their general level of anxiety. These effects are more common when taking high doses. reduce and in some cases. animals. indigestion. Relievers are a reactive medicine and may not be suitable for those who suffer violent attacks rendering them incapable of administering the dose. depression. that in certain conditions they are likely to experience an asthmatic episode. In other words. and so have built up an expectation of an attack. mites. they respond by changing their breathing pattern and they begin to breathe more rapidly and more shallowly. studies have shown that taking steroid tablets regularly. pollen. arguments. Triggers of asthma can be psychosomatic which might best be defined as a physical condition influenced by psychological or emotional factors. Intrinsic asthma is when the trigger is anything except an allergy ± including factors such as stress. This should be done using ego strengthening techniques and feedback of improvement as it occurs. asthma can also be deemed as a ³conditioned response. they respond by starting to hyperventilate. With regards to adults. To many the effectiveness of hypnotherapy may seem surprising as asthma is quite often perceived as a physiological allergic reaction to dust. social occasions even laughter. It is without consciously knowing it. Extrinsic asthma is when the immune system respo nds to external allergens of one sort or another. The use of ego strengthening suggestions is particularly effective to help build up confidence. These include constant hunger. bruising. from many previous occasions.

although research shows that it may help reduce the steroid dosage. It is extremely important to remember that direct symptom removal should be at all times avoided. Results showed that 82% were much improved or remitted entirely. it is also important to say that different people will react to hypnosis in different ways. A subject may or may not be responsive to one suggestion but reacts strongly to another suggestion. For maximum effectiveness it is advisable that patients practise between sessions using positive suggestions. Others may easily be treated with h ypnosis. A subject may or may not be responsive to one suggestion but reacts strongly to another suggestion. . 12 of whom had suffered for over 10 years. Subjects were treated with hypnotherapy with particular emphasis on self-hypnosis. More recently Morrison (1988) conducted a study with 16 asthmatic patients. Studies show that children in particular are able to control their own physiological responses to suggestions made while under hypnosis. will almost certainly reduce respiratory drive. In addition other procedures are also used to help patients develop a deeply ingraine d knowledge and expectation whereby in the event of an asthmatic incident they are more likely to remain calm and be able respond and deal with it appropriately . Others may easily be treated with hypnosis. However. Some may be harder to treat if they are reluctant to be treated or find it harder to relax. Some may be harder to treat if they are reluctant to be treated or find it harder to relax. it is also important to say that different people will react to hypnosis in different ways. Self-hypnosis is high amongst the key elements integral to the effectiveness of hypnosis in treating asthma. and this in turn has very strong implications for the treatment of disorders such as asthma in paediatrics. Due to the fact that asthma has no cure it is important to reiterate that hypnotherapy can only help control the severity of the attack rather than prevent it from occurring. In another study in (1970) they described the treatment of 173 successive cases of asthma with self -hypnosis over a six-year period. A person¶s physiological response to suggestions made can also be used to determine a subject¶s responsiveness. After one year alone the results from the study showed a fall in hospital admissions. Being that many patients become addicted to steroids the results of hypnotherapy may be less satisfactory. Studies show that children in particular are able to control their own physiological responses to suggestions made while under hypnosis. However. and this in turn has very strong implications for the treatment of disorders such a s asthma in paediatrics. when in fact he is. During a controlled study it was Maher-Loughman et al (1962) showed success in reducing the frequency and severity of attacks in 27 cases of asthma in comparison with 28 controls who were given the latest inhaler. as to suggest to an asthmatic patient that he is not wheezing or ³tig ht´.treatment is required. A person¶s physiological response to suggestions made can also be used to determine a subject¶s responsiveness.

Asthma is among the most common chronic diseases of the western world and has significant effects on patients' health and quality of life. Hypnosis has been used clinically to treat a variety of disorders that are refractive to pharmaceutical-based therapies. A combination of self -hypnosis with relaxed diaphragmatic breathing is the best way of tackling this problem. Despite this it is important to note that although hypnotherapy helps adults and children with the suffering from asthma in easing their symptoms and improving their quality of life. Coupled with varying degrees of patient susceptibility to hypnotherapy. Numerous studies have been conducted to dates which have consistently demonstrated a positive effect of hypnosis with asthma. Sometimes it may be unobtrusive and difficult to spot with diagnosis often missed. including asthma. Maher-Loughnan et al (1962) emphasise the importance of self hypnosis as this provides the retraining. coupled with a full explanation to the patient of the mechanisms involved (Wilkinson 1988) . shallow. More and larger randomised. . but relatively little attention has been given recently to the use of clinical hypnosis as a standard treatment for asthma. . The missing factor in treatment could well be insufficient attention to the emotional side of the patient¶s illness. and when patients use self -hypnosis at home. It is typically treated with pharmaceutical products. unstable and irregular. it is fair to say that medical practitioners will only recommend hypnosis as a complimentary therapy to be used alongside conventional medicines rathe r than an alternative treatment. Existing data suggest that hypnosis efficacy is enhanced in subjects who are susceptible to the treatment especially when hypnosis sessions are administered over several sessions. Breathing control exercises also show encouraging results in a high percentage of these patients. but there is an increasing interest in finding non-pharmaceutical therapies for this condition. Children respond very positively to using hypnosis to treat asthma. it is premature to conclude that hypnosis is unequivocally effective . Failure to provide retraining could also be important. In conclusion.Explaining to the patient is extremely important because real symptoms which are caused by physiological changes have quite often previously been dismissed as nerves thus increasing the patient¶s apprehension and frustration resulting in further hyperventilation which is a typical vicious circle. where asthmatic breathing is a conditioned response. controlled studies are needed as there remains little evidence that hypnosis is an effecti ve therapy when used on its own.During an asthma attack the hyperventilation produces a breathing pattern which is rapid.