Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Cool' imagery lowers hot flashes through hypnotherapy

Date:
July 14, 2010
Source:
Baylor University
Summary:
With an estimated 85 percent of women experiencing hot flashes as they approach menopause, researchers are concentrating on finding effective treatments that do not include hormonal or other pharmaceutical therapies. Now, a new study has shown that women who specifically pictured images associated with coolness during hypnotherapy had a dramatic decrease in hot flashes.

Women who specifically pictured images associated with coolness during hypnotherapy had a dramatic decrease in hot flashes.
Credit: iStockphoto

With an estimated 85 percent of women experiencing hot flashes as they approach menopause, researchers are concentrating on finding effective treatments that do not include hormonal or other pharmaceutical therapies. Now, a new Baylor University study has shown that women who specifically pictured images associated with coolness during hypnotherapy had a dramatic decrease in hot flashes.

The results appear in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis.

"This is an interesting finding because it begins to shed light on what is it, specifically, about hypnotic relaxation therapy that reduces the hot flashes," said Dr. Gary Elkins, professor of psychology and neuroscience at Baylor's College of Arts and Sciences, who has conducted several studies on hypnotic relaxation therapy. "The finding may indicate that areas of the brain activated by imagery may be identical to those activated by actual perceived events. Consequently, it may be that while a woman suffering hot flashes imagines a cool place, she also feels cool rather than the heat of a hot flash."

While a previous Baylor study has shown that hot flashes can be reduced by up to 68 percent in breast cancer survivors by utilizing hypnotic relaxation therapy, the specific mental imagery used by women for reduction of hot flashes is a new finding.

The Baylor researchers surveyed the 51 breast cancer survivors who participated in a hypnosis intervention study for the treatment of their hot flashes. Participants were asked to identify their own personal preferences for mental imagery for reduction of hot flashes prior to each session. Some participants described actual places they had visited, while other described generalized imagery they preferred.

The results show:

• All participants showed a preference for images associated with coolness, while none used imagery associated with warmth. In fact, when a participant used mental imagery associated with a warm fire, she became relaxed, however the hot flashes did not decrease.

• The most common themes utilized by the participants included cool mountains, water, air or wind, snow, trees, leaves and forests.

• Of the themes, 27 percent of participants visualized water associated with coolness such as a cool waterfall or rain shower. 17.6 percent pictured cool air or wind and 16.2 percent pictured cool mountains. 11.5 percent visualized a cool forest or leaves and 6.8 percent pictured snow. 20.9 percent pictured other things like a cool movie theater or frost on a winter morning.

"These findings really give guidance to what women respond to," Elkins said. "This study supports the idea that the most effective images are those that are generated by the participant themselves, in relation to their own perceptions and life experiences."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Baylor University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Baylor University. "'Cool' imagery lowers hot flashes through hypnotherapy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713215202.htm>.
Baylor University. (2010, July 14). 'Cool' imagery lowers hot flashes through hypnotherapy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713215202.htm
Baylor University. "'Cool' imagery lowers hot flashes through hypnotherapy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713215202.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robotic Hair Restoration

Robotic Hair Restoration

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A new robotic procedure is changing the way we transplant hair. The ARTAS robot leaves no linear scarring and provides more natural results. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Insertable Cardiac Monitor

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A heart monitor the size of a paperclip that can save your life. The “Reveal Linq” allows a doctor to monitor patients with A-Fib on a continuous basis for up to 3 years! Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Attacking Superbugs

Attacking Superbugs

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) Two weapons hospitals can use to attack superbugs. Scientists in Ireland created a new gel resistant to superbugs, and a robot that can disinfect a room in minutes. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins