August 16, 2022

Q&A

Is hypnosis good for quitting smoking?

Is hypnosis good for quitting smoking? Is it effective? Is it dangerous? What are the side effects? These are the questions we will answer today!

A few days ago, a Kwitter asked us the following question: "I want to try to quit smoking with hypnosis, what do you think? What is your opinion on this method against smoking, is it effective? And do you think it is dangerous?" Here is our answer to that question!

Hypnosis to quit smoking: does it work?

Like many alternative methods to stop smoking (laser, acupuncture, etc.) hypnosis is not considered today as a scientifically validated method to stop smoking. As we already explained in our article on alternative methods to quit smoking, "a meta-analysis by the Cochrane Foundation, a reference in the evaluation of treatments, shows that most of the existing studies on the subject are of poor quality, and concludes that there is currently no sufficiently strong evidence of a specific superior efficacy of hypnosis compared to other types of behavioral interventions, or to do nothing."

It means that, at this time, hypnosis is considered to be as effective as a placebo. There is a wide range of opinion among those who have tried hypnosis to quit smoking. For example, in the Kwit community, see below for some messages on the subject.

Kwit Community opinions on hypnosis to quit smoking

Here are some opinions collected in our community on the subject of hypnosis to quit smoking:

  • Chrystel's opinion:

I stopped smoking more than 9 months ago (I didn't believe in it), after one hypnosis session, and, no more! Surprising for me, and no withdrawal). Big smoker of one pack of cigarettes per day and 24 years of relationship with cigarettes. What freedom!!! The problem… The weight gain! 10 kg!

  • Pauline's opinion:

I had been smoking a pack a day for almost 15 years. I did a hypnosis session. Since then, I haven't smoked (and I haven't cracked once). I had scheduled this appointment week in advance with the goal of not smoking when I left, and it worked. Even though I felt some things during the session (extreme relaxation, slightly second state), I don't think hypnosis is the solution. I think it works because you make that appointment, condition yourself to stop when you leave the session, and drop tens of euros when you leave… I was probably already quite decided when I made that appointment, and I relied on that to reassure myself certainly with foreign help, like a boost… So that's what I think helped. But I'm not sure I believe in hypnosis itself.

  • Alice's opinion:

I had been smoking for 12 years, and I always loved smoking. I had previously quit in 2015 for 3/4 months. For 2020, I decided to quit. When I finally made an appointment with a hypnotist who had been recommended, I was even more afraid and very apprehensive about the session. I had made an appointment on a Monday at 9:30 am, to start the week. I felt a strong effect during the hypnosis itself and came out of it completely stoned. I was for 2/3 days after that. Since then, I sometimes feel like smoking, but I feel like a little wall in my mind that prevents me from doing so. I have had symptoms of irritability, food cravings, the signs of withdrawal that I was prepared for. But they were softened compared to my 2015 stop. Moreover, I had made an appointment with this doctor because he was a doctor, not "just" a hypnotist. I was reassured by his medical approach to hypnosis and his commitment to smoking cessation. I agree with Pauline that you have to decide to quit for it to work, otherwise, there is no point. I also think that the financial investment that a session represents can help you not to relapse: "I didn't spend this money to relapse." Today, I know that I am proud to have arrived there and that my session more than 2 months ago is largely amortized and will be for decades to come. COURAGE TO EVERYONE, there are bad moments to go through, but after that, it's only happiness.

If you want to try this method to quit smoking despite the current lack of evidence of effectiveness, ask your doctor for advice who can direct you to a practitioner with a recognized diploma, it is essential.

Hypnosis is not dangerous if it is practiced in a professional setting and regulated by a doctor.

The 3 points to remember from this article

  • Hypnosis to stop smoking is not yet recognized as a scientifically validated method to quit smoking.

  • Opinions are unanimous: the fact of being in the process of quitting already does a lot and hypnosis in itself is not a factor.

  • The practice of hypnosis to quit smoking is not dangerous if it is supervised and performed by a professional.

To stop smoking with a scientifically validated method, download Kwit!

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