The Vagus nerve is a long nerve that runs from the brainstem right down into the abdomen. It is recognized as being essential to maintaining a good level of mental health as well as being responsible for bodily functions such as digestion, heart rate and immunity.
Your vagus nerve can become overstimulated when you are subjected to an overload of stress, which in turn leads to increased levels of anxiety and physical symptoms affecting the gut and heart. When someone reports a tightening sensation in the gut when they are anxious this will be due to their vagus nerve going into overdrive. If someone is afraid of flying, for example, they may suffer from diarrhea pain in the abdomen and sweating. These symptoms quickly subside when the stimulus, in this case fear of flying, lessens or disappears.
However, if the stress continues, the physical symptoms are amplified until the suffer feels helpless.
The relaxation and positive suggestions employed in Hypnotherapy can have a powerful impact on the working of the vagus nerve. It can be soothed and calmed so that stress and anxiety are removed. How your therapist chooses to do this will depend on their preferred method, but guided meditations involving nature, the landscape, water, and clouds are common, and effective.
In addition to soothing the vagus nerve on the physical level, you will begin to reprogram your unconscious mind, building new neural pathways and replacing fear and anxiety with confidence and certainty.