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Hypnosis/Self-hypnosis and IBS


I have read that hypnosis can be effective in relieving irritable bowel syndrome symptoms.  Do you have any information on self-hypnosis and IBS, or if it is possible to do hypnosis on Skype?  (I live far from where and qualified hypnotist lives).

Hello -

Thanks for your question.  Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is usually diagnosed when a person has been put through a series of tests by their doctors and they confirm that, while they are having real physical symptoms, there is no physical cause that can be found.  

My partner and I have worked with a number of clients over the years with IBS and the results have been very good.  Most reported being 95-100% clear of their symptoms after just two 2-3 hour sessions with us.  In other cases, the clients reported a major relief in symptoms, by their estimate from 70-90% improved.  We use hypnosis sometimes combined with other methods such as Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP).

Here's an article from the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association of a study on IBS comparing Hypnosis, Supportive Therapy with placebo, and medical treatment.  It clearly shows a much higher improvement for the Hypnosis group.  In addition, the long-term follow-up shows that NONE of the hypnosis group was taking any medication at the follow-up and were still having substantial symptom relief.

There are a couple of other article links on my website

What we have found with our clients is there is usually a deep emotional issue (or issues) that have caused the Unconscious Mind to create the symptoms.  Sometimes, the Unconscious is doing it because it thinks it is actually helping the person in some way.  We had one client who went through a bad relationship breakup, so much so they didn't want to see the person ever again.  The Unconscious created the IBS since it would keep the person from going out much, basically just to work and back home, so there was little chance of running into the person.  In this case, we worked to remove the old emotional hurt that was still buried deep down from the failed relationship, then worked with the Unconscious to agree to stop giving the person the symptoms as they didn't need them.  The person at last report had been symptom free for over 4 years.

Because there may be emotional issues, I don't think self-hypnosis is the best way to deal with this.  You could do some self-hypnosis to help relax you and focus on calming the body, but what you want to do is find out the real cause in the mind and fix it.  For that, you're better with having a professional work with you.  In most cases, it should not take that many sessions and the cost will be, in my opinion, well worth the relief you will receive.

There are many national and international hypnosis certifying groups around the world, you may want to search online and contact some to find out if they can recommend someone in or near your area.  Sometimes you may find someone practicing closer than you think.

Hypnosis can be done by Skype but many hypnotist prefer to work in person for a number of reason.  At this time, I do not work with clients via Skype, but you can search online to find hypnotists who have worked with clients with IBS and contact them to see if they'd be willing to work with you online via cam/audio.

Finally, if you have not already done so, you should see a doctor and have appropriate tests done to make sure there is no physical cause for your symptoms.

Good luck!

Burt Borkan  


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Burton Borkan


Questions regarding the use of hypnosis for everything from habits to deep emotional issues, insomnia to fears/phobias. Also can give information on related areas such as NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), Parts Therapy, Time Line Therapy and more.


I have been practicing hypnosis for over 15 years and have been a certified practitioner for over 7 years.

National Guild of Hypnotists
American Board of Hypnotherapy
Time Line Therapy Association
American Board of Neuro Linguistic Programming

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