Children don’t deserve an illness such as IBS. Resolved! Counselling for Children could help them to be free of it, once and for all.

Hello there. Thanks for coming to visit my website. I hope what you find gives you and your son or daughter some comfort. Lord knows they’ll be needing some form of comfort, for IBS is a horrid condition for a child to have to suffer. Childhood, after all, should be a time of endless optimism and faith in the ability of one’s own body to remain fit and healthy.

The good news is that IBS doesn’t have to be a life-sentence. It can be ended and there are many people in Reading, Oxford and surrounding areas who have found that the discomfort, the pain, the fear and the life-limiting habits can all be left behind. I helped them to regain their lives and I couple work to help your child or teenager too.

I also offer counselling and psychotherapy for IBS online, using vsee, whatsapp, zoom. Please get in touch for details.

A note of caution: please do consult with a medical professional before bringing your son or daughter to see me. IBS needs to be properly diagnosed before the correct form of treatment can begin.

What causes IBS?

ibs and counselling for childrenWell, IBS is an umbrella term which covers a whole number of potential contributory factors. In my experience (not that I’m medically trained, of course) my clients have often found that eliminating certain dietary elements has helped. Cutting back on alcohol, stopping smoking have also helped, though this is probably not a concern when dealing with children.

However, although elimination of dietary triggers can be helpful and may resolve the problem where true intolerances are found, it will not resolve the the problem of genuine IBS. That will rely on the ability of your child or teeanger to stop suppressing their stress.

Stress is accepted by the medical profession as being the major component in IBS. Stress which is suppressed has nowhere to go. Suppressing stress turns it inward. We all used to hear of people developing stomach ulcers thanks to stress. We’ve all seen films where overly-stressed executives keel over from heart-attacks. The idea that emotional stress can affect physical health is hardly a novel one. 

If stress and anxiety is affecting your child to the extent that their physical health is compromised then it’s time for them to learn how to handle their emotions more effectively.

How do I work with IBS?

ibs and teenagers counsellingIn my work with adults (I am an adult psychotherapist too) I would use a combination of psychotherapy, mindfulness and hypnotherapy in order to help my IBS clients.

I would help them to come to terms with whatever had caused them to be stress-prone to begin with. Even with adults it would generally go back to childhood. Bullying whilst at school, parental separation, some general sense of not being good enough and a whole lot more can teach a person to feel badly about oneself.

People who feel that badly about themselves will generally learn to suppress their feelings. That’s where the trouble begins, particularly when it comes to psychosomatic conditions such as IBS.

So, using those therapies to help my clients to process their emotions more effectively and to let go of their self-critical behaviours very often proves to be an essential step in letting go of IBS. Using hypnotherapy and mindfulness to help people to conquer their fear of travel, public spaces and accidents is another essential task. Step by step an IBS sufferer can be helped to take back control of his or her life. Step by step they can learn that they don’t have to be ruled by fear any longer. Mindfulness and hypnotherapy are fantastic tools for this.

The very same therapies can also be used, when rendered age-appropriate, for children and teenagers too. The younger your son or daughter is, the more likely I would be to integrate other forms of therapy too. Play therapy. sand-tray, puppets and a whole lot more can be utilised to enable younger people to understand, process and come to terms with their feelings in order that IBS can be waved goodbye, once and for all.

But hypnotherapy, that’s all bunkum, isn’t it?

Research on Hypnotherapy and Irritable Bowel Syndrome

research hypnotherapyI used to be a massive sceptic when it came to hypnotherapy too. One day I went to see a hypnotherapist for smoking cessation and discovered that it really can help. I’ve been working as a psychotherapist and hypnotherapist for eight years and have discovered that hypnotherapy can accelerate the progress of any other form of psychotherapy. It’s as valid with children and teenagers as it is with anybody else.

Whorwell PJ; Prior A; Faragher EB. Controlled trial of hypnotherapy in the treatment of severe refractory irritable-bowel syndrome.The Lancet 1984, 2: 1232-4

This research helped to win NICE approval for hypnotherapy as a treatment for IBS. Whorwell is now a major figure within the NHS, with regard to IBS, and pioneered research into how hypnosis could help IBS sufferers.

Houghton LA; Heyman DJ; Whorwell PJ. Symptomatology, quality of life and economic features of irritable bowel syndrome–the effect of hypnotherapy. Aliment Pharmacol Ther, 1996 Feb, 10:1, 91-5

This research demonstrated that IBS sufferers treated with hypnotherapy took fewer sick days from work, recovered from their symptoms more rapidly and were more likely to remain in work than those who had not used the therapy.

There are many more studies. You can find them here.

Call me and we’ll discuss things in more detail

If you’d like to talk with me about how I could help your son or daughter to be free of IBS then give me a call. If you live in or around Oxford or Reading then you could ring 07786 123736 / 01183 280284 or 01865 600970. Email me on or simply use the contact form at the bottom of this page. However you contact me I look forward to hearing from you and to helping your child to get back to enjoying their life once again.