Children and hypnotherapy

Information fact sheet

Hypnotherapy is an effective psychological therapy tool that can be used to help support children.

It is safe and there are no side effects with this treatment.

What is hypnotherapy?

It is a type of talking therapy.

It has the added benefit of focussing the child’s attention and imagination.

What happens?

The process of hypnosis is like daydreaming.

The child is firstly invited to focus their attention.

The therapist then creates a multi-sensory experience, such as a story, to deepen their focus further.

How it works

Being under hypnosis (a completely relaxed state) enables the conscious part of the brain to be quietened.

When the conscious mind is quiet, the therapist can talk directly to the subconscious brain (the storage centre for all learned behaviours, habits, automatic thoughts and feelings).

When talking to the subconscious, the therapist offers suggestions or alternative thoughts.

These suggestions or alternatives are focussed on the specific needs and goals of the child, for example visualising a future where they can fall asleep without a parent next to them.

This process of suggestions supports in training the child’s brain to create new pathways, to re-wire and ready itself for learning new skills to achieve their desired goal.

It is the child’s choice to adopt the suggested approach or not. The child always has control and must want to make the changes.

The parents’ role in the treatment is important as they are the person supporting their child with tasks between sessions.

As well as supporting their child between sessions, it is important that they feedback to the therapist in between sessions and keep them updated with any changes, challenges and general observations.

You can also download this information in a leaflet.

[PDF, 4 pages]

This factsheet was compiled using information from the following sources:

Gray, L. (2022) What is pediatric hypnosis
Available at:
[Accessed: 10/05/2023]

Peak, M. (2021) Hypnotherapy for children
Available at:
[Accessed: 10/05/2023]

Wincote, H. (2022) Hypnotherapy for children
The Hypnotherapy Academy
[Course material]