Hypnosis, when added to traditional approaches to the treatment of sexual dysfunction in both males and females, facilitates treatment and extends treatment options. Hammond (1990) noted the advantages in using hypnosis as an adjunct to traditional forms of sexual dysfunction, particularly in the way hypnotically-based techniques may assist in working with the single individual if the patient's partner is unwilling, unavailable or non-existent. Hypnosis provides direct and indirect ways of effecting changes in negative thought processes at both the superficial and deeper schematic level. As Araoz (1982) noted, it is often the negative thinking of patients with sexual disorders that perpetuates difficulties. The involvement of thought, image and symbolism in sexual interest, arousal and behavior cannot be overemphasized. Changing the information, associations, symbols and images that contribute to dysfunction is a primary goal of therapy. Hypnosis provides a powerful means of influencing all these cognitive levels in treatment.
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