Hypnotherapists use a natural state of deep relaxation and the power of positive suggestion to help alter a patent's thoughts and behaviour to improve their well-being.

Hypnosis is a natural trance-like state-of-mind in which a hypnotherapist may make corrections and provide new ways of thought, emotion and behaviour directly to a patient's unconscious mind. This form of treatment can help people overcome a range of psychological conditions, behaviours and ways of thinking. It is closely linked to psychotherapy and many hypnotherapists use hypnosis alongside other forms of psychotherapy.

According to the British Society of Clinical Hypnosis (BSCH) http://www.bsch.org.uk/index.html, 85% of people will respond at some level to clinical hypnotherapy, which means it is often used when other conventional methods of treatment have not been effective.

When carried out by a trained and qualified hypnotherapist the benefits can be long lasting and often permanent.

Hypnotherapists help people with a range of physical and psychological problems, such as:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Migraines
  • Panic attacks
  • Anxiety
  • Smoking
  • Nail biting
  • Weight control
  • Lack of confidence
  • Phobias
  • Insomnia
  • Reduce stress, tension and blood pressure
  • Gynaecological problems - PMT
  • Arthritic pains
  • Some sexual problems

It can also be used as a tool to:

  • Help control pain
  • Improve performance at work, studying or in sport
  • Improve birth outcomes

Work Activities

The typical duties of a hypnotherapist include:

  • Discussing aims, and objectives of the course of treatment
  • Discussing clients' medical history
  • Inducing the state of deep relaxation and hypnosis
  • Making suggestions and statements to resolve the specific issue
  • Providing the patient with feedback on progress
  • Taking notes and writing reports

The working hours of a hypnotherapist can be really varied according to where you are employed. If you work from home you could choose your own hours, whereas if you work from rooms in a shared practice, hospital or clinic the hours may be more regulated. It may include working in the evening or at weekend to meet the needs of clients. A hypnotherapy session generally lasts about one hour but the number of sessions needed will vary.

It can take a while to build up a reliable client base, so positive referrals and word-of-mouth is key to gaining a good reputation - and therefore an increased number of appointments - in this line of work. A new hypnotherapist may need to supplement their work with a part-time job until client referrals and bookings increase.

Personal Qualities and Skills

Key skills for hypnotherapists

  • A good understanding of hypnosis techniques and psychotherapy
  • Self-motivation to build up a client list
  • Good understanding and empathy
  • The ability to put clients at ease
  • Confident and self-assured
  • An understanding of client confidentiality

Pay And Opportunities

Typical employers of hypnotherapists

Hypnotherapists often work in a related profession first such as social work or healthcare professions. The number of referrals from GPs has increased over the last few years and there are a small number of opportunities in the NHS but these are normally for practitioners with a medical qualification.


Qualifications and training required

There are no formal requirements for practicing as a hypnotherapist but as success largely depends on reputation, being registered with an independent professional body can help and provide the right level of training. For example the Department of Health recommends hypnotherapists that are registered with the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC), which was set up by the Department of Health in 2010.

It could also be beneficial to gain a qualification recognised by one of the professional bodies associated with hypnotherapy, for example the General Hypnotherapy Standards Council (http://www.general-hypnotherapy-register.com) has a General Hypnotherapy Register and provides training courses.

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