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Hypnotherapy for Blushing and Flushing

Blushing is something that everyone has experienced at one time or another. Yet the bizarre thing is that, despite its universality, nobody has really uncovered the reason why we blush.

We do know that blushing is a natural response which occurs spontaneously in anyone experiencing a powerful emotion such as embarrassment, anger or excitement, but we do not know why such emotions should produce this kind of flushing.

It has been theorized that perhaps blushing is a consequence of a primitive survival mechanism: sensing danger, the body is flooded with powerful chemicals such as the 'fight or flight' hormone adrenaline.

This has the effect of engorging and expanding the blood vessels, as an increased amount of blood is pumped freely through them. The blood vessels in the face, neck and chest area not only have a greater degree of vascularisation, but they are, of course, more visible.

We sense ourselves turning hot and becoming red - often in the presence of others - and this embarrasses us. It is this embarrassment that so easily and automatically feeds and enhances the flushing, blushing feeling.

Of course, there are other possible triggers for the blushing response. Medication, alcohol, menopause and exercise, for example can all produce a flushing of the face and upper body.

Also, the food additive MSG or monosodium glutamate - known as Accent in North America and Ajinomoto in the Far East - which is often found in convenience foods and snack foods such as potato chips/crisps, flavoured tortilla chips and stock cubes can produce a flushing response in some people.

Anyone experiencing blushing on a regular basis would be wise to rule out these possible triggers before looking for other causes.

Additionally, there is a medical condition called hyperhidrosis, which causes excessive sweating and reddening. This is entirely different from the common type of blushing that we have all sometimes felt and it is often treated by surgical intervention.

Normal blushing, however, has no need to be treated in such an extreme manner.

But there is a much more common condition which is a real fear of blushing called erythrophobia. As the name suggests, it is a true phobia. Erythrophobia is a form of anxiety disorder and is linked to social phobia or the fear of being humiliated or embarrassed in front of others.

Those experiencing erythrophobia feel completely powerless over their blushing and have the tendency to focus on their blushing to such an extent that they commonly enter into situations - socially or at work - where they expect to blush. It is this expectation that they will blush in certain situations that so often triggers the blush response itself. And once started, it simply escalates.

The medical response to blushing, if there is one, is to prescribe beta-blockers in an attempt to block the action of hormones such as adrenaline.

SSRIs such as Prozac (fluoxetine) may be prescribed in an attempt to make the situations that cause the individual to blush somehow less daunting. While some people have reported some success with these medications, there are other, less intrusive ways in which to treat blushing and flushing.

Foremost among these is perhaps hypnosis.

Working on the assumption that excessive blushing occurs in certain situations where others are present, it is seen as a form of 'conditioned response', a learned reaction that is the product of past experiences.

As such, this response can be unlearned.

In hypnosis, the individual can learn how to control their own responses to those situations which previously caused them to blush. In the hypnotic state of trance, techniques can be learned which teach the person how to bring down the heat and control the blushing and such techniques can be used at any time a blush feels like it is coming on.

It is worth remembering, of course, that no one specific approach can work for every single person every single time. But hypnosis certainly is one of the most powerful means of re-programming the subconscious mind and re-writing those programmes that cause a person to blush.

With hypnosis, the individual can learn how to turn down the heat and regain control of their blushing, greatly improving their life, socially and at work.

If you, or anyone you care about, are experiencing the discomfort of blushing, then the right kind of hypnosis - either working on a 1-to-1 basis with an experienced hypnotherapist or through the medium of an effective self-hypnosis recording - can put an end to this annoying reaction and put you back in control.

About Author Peter James Field :

Peter Field is a leading British hypno-psychotherapist with busy clinics in London &amp; Birmingham, UK. He is a Member of the British Association for Counselling &amp; Psychotherapy &amp; Fellow of the Royal Society of Health. Peter's self hypnosis download 'Put an End to Blushing' is available at: <a href="" target="_blank"></a> More of his absorbing articles and other info is on&nbsp; his therapy website: <a href="" target="_blank"></a>

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Article Added on Friday, October 8, 2010
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