MORE ABOUT PAM CARPENTER HYPNOSIS AND HYPNOTHERAPY
Pam Carpenter has been a Registered Social Worker since 2000, and a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist since 2015. Her extensive experience as a social work practitioner has been combined with 350+ hours of training in hypnosis and hypnotherapy.
All services provided by Pam Carpenter Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy are within the scope of professional practice, according to professional designations and current registration within regulating bodies. She has active memberships within the Alberta College of Social Workers, as well as the American Council of Hypnotist Examiners and the American Hypnosis Association.
Commonly asked questions
WHAT IS HYPNOSIS AND DOES IT REALLY WORK?
Hypnosis is an altered and heightened state of awareness, and is often referred to as a "trance state". Hypnosis is achieved by using techniques to guide a person to deeper levels of mental and physical relaxation, while at the same time achieving a narrowed and focused state of attention and concentration. During hypnosis, by relaxing the conscious mind (that part of the mind which acts as a filter by reasoning, analyzing, judging and decision-making), a person is able to access the subconscious mind where all experiences and memories are stored. This facilitates clarity of thought, an altered perspective, and allows the mind to be more open to learning and suggestions. The subconscious mind is very receptive to suggestions received during hypnosis.
Hypnotherapy is not a type of psychotherapy, rather it uses hypnosis as a tool or technique to allow a person to access information at a subconscious level. An individual will learn to use their own mind, along with the power of suggestion, in order to overcome difficulties, change certain behaviors, achieve goals, or manage emotional distress or physical symptoms.
Hypnosis is a safe, quick, and effective way to deal with many issues. Often satisfactory results can be achieved in only 1 - 3 sessions. It can be used alone or in conjunction with other health care modalities. Clinical hypnosis has been endorsed by: the British Medical Association (1955), American Medical Association (1958), American Psychiatric Association (1961) and the American Psychological Association (1969).
CAN I BE HYPNOTIZED?
Research has shown that the vast majority of people can be hypnotized. However, there are different levels of suggestibility, and a person may be more responsive to hypnosis if they have a greater capacity for imaginary involvement (ie. fantasy, daydreaming) or for absorption in activities (ie. blocking out external happenings when reading a book, playing sports, watching a movie, etc). Children often make excellent hypnotic subjects, whereas overly analytical minds or those with severe mental illness may not. The more a person experiences hypnosis, the easier and deeper the hypnotic trance becomes.
Trance is a natural state that most people experience many times in their lives. Immediately before falling asleep at night and before being fully awake each morning is an example of trance. Daydreaming is another naturally occurring trance state that is familiar, and is similar to being in a light state of hypnosis.
WHAT DOES HYPNOSIS FEEL LIKE?
During hypnosis, a person is not asleep or unconscious. Rather they are very relaxed and active participants in the hypnosis session. They are more focused inward and, although a person will be aware of everything going on around them, they allow outward surroundings to have little effect. Some people don't realize when they are under hypnosis, and may feel as though relatively little is happening. This is because trance is a natural and normal state, and being under hypnosis doesn't always feel particularly unusual. The feeling of being in a hypnotic trance will differ from person to person. During all hypnosis sessions, a person will be able to easily talk and interact.
The term "sleep" is a dramatic term used by hypnotists to suggest that the mind is deeply relaxed. During hypnosis, a person may get to the point where they are between the sleeping (Alpha wave) and waking (Theta wave) states, but will typically remember everything that happened and what was said during the session. The hypnotist's voice may fade in and out but this is not sleep, rather it has to do with a person slipping in and out of different depth levels of trance.
Hypnosis is similar to meditation in that both use similar techniques to achieve a state of relaxation. The main difference is that hypnosis tends to have a specific psychological or behavioral purpose or end-goal in mind, whereas meditation has a purpose of emptying the mind in order to relax or de-stress. Meditation is used to quiet the mind, whereas hypnosis is used to program the mind.
WILL YOU MAKE ME DO SOMETHING WITH WHICH I AM NOT COMFORTABLE?
Hypnosis is not a form of mind control. Much misunderstanding comes as a result of stage hypnosis (which is used for entertainment purposes) and/or how it's portrayed in the media. The truth is, no matter how deeply hypnotized, a person will always remain in control throughout the session and cannot be made to do or say anything they do not want. A person cannot be made to reveal their deepest, darkest secrets and are free to say as much or as little as they wish. A person is just as capable of lying under hypnosis as they are at any other time. An introvert will remain an introvert.
All hypnosis is self-hypnosis, meaning that there must be cooperation and a willingness to be hypnotized in order for it to work. The mind can accept or reject any suggestion given during hypnosis if it goes against a person's core beliefs and values. Likewise, a person cannot become trapped in a hypnotic state, and could end trance whenever they wish. They could open their eyes and get up at any time, but will choose not to because of the enjoyable state of relaxation. If something were to happen, a person would either, 1) come out of trance on their own (suddenly and immediately) when they sensed something was wrong or, 2) naturally fall asleep and awaken to a state of full alertness.
DOES HYPNOSIS GO AGAINST RELIGIOUS VALUES?
Some people shy away from hypnosis but often this is because they misunderstand what it is. The traditional and ongoing image of the hypnotist portrays a mysterious figure who is said to exert supernatural or magical power and influence, and could enforce his will on others. Some conservative religious groups consider hypnosis to be "the work of the devil". Hypnosis is history has been associated with those in the occult who wanted to reach evil spirits and achieve mind control.
Whether suggestions are planted by a priest or hypnotherapist, it must be remembered that hypnosis is a natural state of mind. It is neither anti-religious or pro-religious. Rather it is a tool to help people lead better lives by meeting their goals, solving their problems, and reducing or eliminating pain. Hypnosis and its techniques have always been very much a part of religious practice and rituals. Prayer is the most common form of hypnotic induction and trance; the act of closing one's eyes, relaxing, and praying is a form of self-hypnosis. In the same way, it draws attention from external surroundings and toward internal thought. The alter, cross and/or flickering candles provide a fixation point for concentration and focus. Precisely the same brain functions occur during both a hypnotic experience and a religious experience. A person may feel at one with the Universe. Concentration combined with relaxation and suggestions can produce feelings of wellbeing and facilitate change.
DO YOU ACCEPT MY INSURANCE?
As this is a private practice, a fee for service is applied. Payment is accepted via cash, cheque, etransfer, or credit card.
Many employee benefit packages include coverage for services by a Registered Social Worker (RSW) in Alberta. Please verify your health insurance coverage prior to your first visit. Typically, the employee pays for services and then is reimbursed by submitting receipts to their insurer.
Motor vehicle accident victims may be eligible for funding through their motor vehicle insurance companies, under Section B Funding.
Receipts may otherwise be claimed as medical cost deductions on yearly income tax.