Dystonia is a complex and highly variable neurological movement disorder in which involuntary muscle contractions cause atypical postures and in some cases, repetitive movements. While this condition isn’t life-threatening it can have a devastating effect upon not only those who are affected, but also upon their families.
There are different forms of this condition, including generalised dystonia, blepharospasm, and cervical dystonia which is by far the most common form. Depending on which part of the body is affected, dystonia can have a significant impact upon the performance of daily functions.
How can hypnotherapy help with dystonia?
The very nature of dystonia produces high levels of stress and anxiety which only serve to exacerbate the condition, but hypnotherapy can reduce these stress levels. This is accomplished by teaching relaxation techniques which direct your awareness away from the condition. Additionally, instruction in self-hypnosis enables you to independently access this level of relaxation at will.
Recent scientific research has demonstrated that mental imagery and visualisation can benefit those living with dystonia. In the same way that mental imagery is used to enhance sport performance, it can also be used in hypnosis to enable dystonia clients to imagine correct muscle function and posture. Because the same neural pathways are used in the brain regardless of whether an action is actually performed or just imagined, the brain can be trained to create new pathways that reflect correct muscle function and posture. This process, called neuroplasticity, offers exciting prospects for those living with all manner of movement disorders.