Hypnotherapy for IBS


The gut-brain connection describes the bidirectional communication between your brain and gut. It involves cross-talk between your hormonal, immune and nervous systems as well as your gut microbiome. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is the most common disorder of the gut-brain interaction. Therapy for IBS can therefore target any of the above systems.


Hypnotherapy is a proven technique that can target your nervous system to optimise digestive health. During hypnotherapy sessions, you enter a state in which your nervous system is downregulated, so that you are more receptive to positive suggestions. You will not be put 'into a trance' during hypnotherapy sessions. You are fully in control.


One study has also shown that hypnotherapy can even be effective when conducted over Skype. Although it was slightly less effective when compared to face-to-face hypnotherapy sessions, skype hypnotherapy is accessible to more people(1).


In this blog post, we interviewed gut doctor, yoga teacher and hypnotherapist Dr Rabia to talk about the benefits of Hypnotherapy for IBS.


What happens during a hypnotherapy session and when can you start to see results?

My sessions last approximately one hour as I use a combined CBT-Hypnotherapy approach. Research shows that anywhere between 6 and 8 sessions is effective for IBS. You can hope to see a shift in your perspective regarding your symptoms within 3 to 6 months of therapy.


Are there any patients who may benefit more from hypnotherapy sessions for IBS?

Most people will benefit as most people can be hypnotised. You are more likely to benefit if you have moderate IBS and, in my experience, if you have optimised dietary measures first.


What happens when you have completed your course of hypnotherapy sessions?

If you suffer from IBS you can expect a 60-70% chance of reduction in symptoms, which may last years.


How can we start our hypnotherapy for IBS journey?

Email me to enquire about a free initial consultation: doctor.rabia10@gmail.com

Additional information:

For Hypnotherapy: www.doctor-rabia.com For Dietetic Support: www.citydietitians.co.uk

To enquire about ‘The Gut Approach Programme’, our food & mood programme run by Dr Rabia & Sophie Medlin: enquiry@citydietitians.co.uk


Resources & Reading:

  1. SKYPE HYPNOTHERAPY FOR IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME: Effectiveness and Comparison with Face-to-Face Treatment (2019) - Hasan, S. et al.

  2. Review article: The history of hypnotherapy and its role in the irritable bowel syndrome (2005) - Whorwell, P.

  3. Hypnotherapy for functional gastrointestinal disorders: a review (2009) - Miller, V. & Whorwell, P.