F. Ralph Berberich, MD

The Scope of Pediatric Suggestions

The word suggestion carries two intentional meanings. One goal is to provide parents and patients with practical solutions to child rearing problems. The setting and time allotted can supplement whatever advice the child's pediatrician has already conveyed. I do not provide psychotherapy, medication, or delve into areas outside the scope of general pediatric practice.

The other meaning of the word suggestion addresses the power of words to guide the listener in a direction that he or she subconsciously chooses to solve problems. The child or teenager may be invited to journey to an imagined place of comfort and self-absorption, a dream-like state that removes her or him from conscious "thinking". In that state, somewhere between consciousness and sleep, properly chosen words and quiet interludes can be powerful motivators that help children accomplish what they would like to do. Some call this state believed-in imagination, while others term it self-hypnosis.

Children who become motivated to learn self-hypnosis almost always learn a valuable skill. As with any other skill or talent, children may have a range of ability and drive to master and practice self-hypnosis. I am often asked about length of the process. Since the child or teenager takes on an active motivated role, trust, anxiety and the duration of the problem all come into play. As the story unfolds and the child learns to use skills he or she already possesses but is initially unaware of, sessions may take place with the child alone, a parent or set of parents without the presence of their child, or parents together with their child.

♦ Practical advice regarding child rearing and health issues
♦ Complex pediatric medical problems
♦ Hypnosis and Alert Suggestions for
        • fears, phobias
        • anxiety/stress
        • habits and tics
        • abdominal pain
        • headaches
        • sleep issues
        • bed-wetting/stool-holding
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