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Sleep Hypnosis – Does it Work?

sleep hypnosis

How hypnotherapy may help with sleep problems

Have you ever wondered if hypnotherapy can help with insomnia? Do you struggle with sleep problems? If so, are you tired of getting up in the morning feeling exhausted?

If the answer is yes, hypnotherapy may offer the solution you’ve been looking for.

Here’s the truth – hypnosis, when properly conducted by a trained professional, has been clinically proven to help some people who suffer from sleeplessness.

Now before continuing, it’s important to state that sleep disturbances can be caused by a variety of factors. Examples include stress, anxiety, and worry. Pre-existing health problems and certain types of medications can also influence the quality of sleep.

That said, hypnotherapy for insomnia can be called upon as a safe, natural, and effective tool to help you get the rest you need.

And the best part about hypnosis is that once you establish a strong bedtime ritual, you can awaken feeling refreshed and restored.

On this page, you will learn:

  • Why sleep problems can be bad for your health
  • A basic definition of hypnotherapy
  • How hypnotherapy may help you sleep better
  • What to look for in a hypnosis professional
  • Resources for learning

Not Sleeping Well Is a Big Problem

Many people think running on low sleep isn’t that big of a deal. Here and there, that’s probably true. But when it becomes a regular thing, sleep disturbances can wreak havoc on your life.

We’re talking about everything from how you feel to how you look.

If you have baggy eyes or people think you appear older than your years, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

Here is the deal – lost sleep affects something like 30 percent of the adult population, according to data put out by the Centers for Disease Control. For many folks, the consequences can be horrible.

Here are just a few – can you relate?

  • An inability to perform basic tasks through the day efficiently.
  • Problems with focusing and concentrating at work.
  • Feeling irritable and cranky in social situations with friends, coworkers, and family members.
  • Headaches, and even migraines for some.
  • Amplification of other medical problems.
  • A tired-looking appearance that is decidedly unattractive.

As a way of coping, many people turn to traditional approaches as forms of treatment. Examples include taking over the counter medications or prescription drugs.

The problem is that for some folks, the pills don’t always work. Moreover, certain types of medications can be habit-forming, meaning that if you aren’t careful, an addiction can form.

This point is especially true of benzodiazepines; a psychoactive substance that is known to cause some people to get hooked. It is for this reason many people turn to holistic approaches, like hypnotherapy for insomnia.

hypnotherapy insomnia

Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy

You’ve probably heard of hypnotherapy before – or at least hypnosis. Both are terms that often get bandied about and are shrouded in mystique.

But what do they really mean? Here is a basic definition.

Hypnotherapy is the process of bringing a person into a trance state. Typically, this involves hypnosis – meaning a professional hypnotizes the individual to encourage an altered state of consciousness.

Here’s the thing to keep in mind. Hypnotherapy isn’t “therapy” in and of itself. Instead, it is a tool of therapy, according to the American Psychological Association.

Translation? You may want to work with a therapist with mental health training and is trained in the sacred art of hypnosis.

Does Sleep Hypnosis Really Work?

All of this brings us to the core question – the one that brought you to this page: does sleep hypnosis work?

Here’s the answer.

When you are hypnotized, you allow your subconscious mind to receive messages that calm your thinking. Through careful scripting (created by your trained professional), you are better able to receive input that deprograms anti-sleep thinking and encourages restful thoughts.

It is thought hypnotherapy for anxiety works in much the same way as described above.

insomnia and hypnosis

Why Does Hypnotherapy Work for Insomnia?

The answer to that question is somewhat complicated. For reasons we do not fully understand, hypnotherapy offers relief for insomnia in some people.

Researchers believe it may have something to do with desensitization; a $10.00 term used to describe a technique used to encourage relaxation.

Some believe it is connected to the power of suggestion. That may very well be true. But for the millions of people who have experienced relief from insomnia, the “why” really doesn’t matter. What is important, however, is the outcome.

In short, for many folks, hypnotherapy for sleep issues works – and works powerfully.

What Should I look for in a Hypnotherapist?

There are many people who claim to be hypnotherapists. But does that mean you should see them for services? Ultimately, that is for you to decide. Most professional organizations that certify clinical hypnotherapists suggest that it is best to pick a professional with the following credentials:

  • Licensed in mental health and/or;
  • Licensed Medical Doctor or Dentist.
  • Background in psychology or medicine (or both).
  • Certified by a respected hypnotherapy organization.

If you are searching for a hypnotherapist, you may want to consider the following organizations:

  • National Board of Certified Clinical Hypnotherapists (NBCCH)
  • American Academy of Medical Hypnoanalysts (AAMH)
  • American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (ASCH)

Is Hypnotherapy Guaranteed to Work?

The simple answer is no. Anyone who tells you they will guarantee anything with complimentary, alternative approaches to wellness isn’t being straight with you.

Here’s the truth. Hypnotherapy has worked for many people to help them work through sleep challenges. It’s safe, natural, and has been used in different forms since the time of the ancients.

The only true way of knowing if it will work for you is by giving it a try. Obviously, it’s important that you come into the experience with an open mind.

Other Thoughts

Most people who make an appointment for sleep-related hypnotherapy do so because they are in dire need of assistance.

To give yourself the best chance for sleep hypnosis to work, make sure you consult with your doctor about your insomnia.

By doing so, your medical provider can rule out other causes that may be contributing to your sleep difficulties.

Main Photo Credit: Pixabay

References: Hypnosis Today: Looking Beyond the Media Portrayal. American Psychological Association (2018).


Sleep Hypnosis – Does it Work?

John D. Moore, PhD

Described as folksy and down to earth, Dr. John Moore infuses current events and pop culture into his posts as a way of communicating wider points on issues related to wellness and goal attainment. His work has been featured in nationally syndicated media, including Cosmo, Men's Fitness and CBS Market Watch. He is a consultant to a number of Fortune 500 companies and institutions of Higher Learning. Dr. Moore is author of Confusing Love with Obsessionand Editor in Chief at: Guy Counseling.

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APA Reference
Moore, J. (2018). Sleep Hypnosis – Does it Work?. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 15, 2020, from


Last updated: 1 Dec 2018
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on All rights reserved.