Self-hypnosis relapse prevention training with chronic drug/alcohol users.
Participants were 261 veterans admitted to Substance Abuse Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Programs (SARRTPs). Participants were assessed pre- and post-intervention, and at 7-week follow-up.
Relapse rates did not significantly differ across the 4 groups at follow-up; 87% of those contacted reported abstinence.
At follow-up, the participants in the 3 treatment conditions were asked how often they practiced with the intervention materials provided them. Practicing and minimal-practicing participants were compared against the control group for each of the 3 interventions via MANOVAs/ANOVAs. Results revealed a significant Time by Groups interaction for the hypnosis intervention, with individuals who played the self-hypnosis audiotapes "at least 3 to 5 times a week" at 7-week follow-up reporting the highest levels of self-esteem and serenity, and the least anger/impulsivity, in comparison to the minimal-practice and control groups.
No significant effects were found for the CBT or stress management interventions. Regression analyses predicted almost two-thirds of the variance of who relapsed and who did not in the hypnosis intervention group.
Hypnotic susceptibility predicted who practiced the self-hypnosis audiotapes. The results suggest that hypnosis can be a useful adjunct in helping chronic substance abuse individuals with their reported self-esteem, serenity, and anger/impulsivity.
Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award
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