This case involves a 33 year old female from the United States who after seeking me out for clinical hypnotherapy for the causing issues that placed her on antidepressants to begin with, discovered she no longer needed them once the cause issues were resolved. However due to the nature of the particular antidepressants she was on, it became almost impossible to quickly get off of them without some particularly nasty withdrawal side effects that rival the withdraw side effects of heroin.
This really is case 1 for this application of clinical hypnotherapy. Nearly every client that came to me asking for help in dealing with depression were on antidepressants. Nearly all of them were walking on the ceiling when they left my office in very high spirits. They were manic and overjoyed to put it lightly. That feeling comes from hypnosis as it naturally produces Endorphins otherwise known as the feel good neurochemical.
Prior to this I had never really gave any thought to helping them off of antidepressants until this client asked me if I could help her get off them. So after some thought and after talking to several psychiatrists to get their input and opinion, I developed a therapy method that would do that and she became the test case to develop and tweak the therapy. The target of the therapy was to produce a higher level of Endorphins than was normally seen in a typical clinical hypnotherapy session.
To make the therapy work the therapy needed to involve the doctor who prescribed the antidepressants or another doctor if the first was not available. Their job was to progressively and as quickly as possible adjust down the dosage without causing physical side effects. Clinical hypnotherapy would deal with the now lazy brain (the organ in your head that hosts your mind) that had stopped producing a proper blend of neurochemicals to keep a person from getting depressed. The third person involved was the person on antidepressants who would keep track of their daily moods and physical withdrawal symptoms and report back how they were doing.
So as the therapy progressed, clinical hypnotherapy would stimulate her brain to start producing the proper blend of neurochemicals and not wait for the brain to do it on it’s own. Waiting for that to happen can result in deep depression before the brain decides it needs to do something. So on a 5 scale that gaged her mood with 3 being middle of the road or normal and 1 being very depressed and 5 being on top of the world, she reported that she was 4 on most days with an occasional 3 and an occasional 5 depending on how her day went. There was some slightly more negative reporting around that particular week of the month associated with her menstrual cycle, but she said that was her normal mood swing and not to consider it.
Several weeks past before she got to zero dosage of the antidepressants and she was fine the entire time. So this signaled the start of the second stage of the therapy that involved weekly visits to see how she was doing as her life was now coming back on line. As all was well and she showed no signs of relapse for a month, we moved to the third and final stage of the therapy that involved periodic visits at increasing intervals until it was certain she would not have a relapse.
All in all the amount of time it took her to get off the antidepressants was about 6 to 8 times faster than the documented and suggested withdrawal duration for these particular antidepressants. So in this case she got her life back in just about 2 months and not 12 to 17 months that would have allowed time for her brain to figure out it needs to go back to work and start producing the needed neurochemicals to avoid depression.
As it turned out the therapy did not require any major adjustments. The only minor things that needed to be done was to better document the person’s mood and what caused changes in mood that were not expected.