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 April 25, 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 April 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) A disease that has killed more than six million cave-dwelling bats in the United States is on the move and wildlife biologists are worried. White Nose Syndrome, discovered in New York in 2006, has now spread to 25 states. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) That little voice telling you to exercise, get in shape and get healthy is probably coming from your boss. More companies are beefing up wellness programs to try and cut down their health care costs. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Blood From World's Oldest Woman Suggests Life Limit

Blood From World's Oldest Woman Suggests Life Limit

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) Scientists say for the extremely elderly, their stem cells might reach a state of exhaustion. This could limit one's life span. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) The Food and Drug Administration wants to crack down on the use of e-cigarettes, banning the sale of the product to minors. Video provided by Newsy
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:
from the past week

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