Does hypnosis carry risks?

Hypnosis may be contraindicated for individuals with certain medical problems, or who are actively abusing drugs or alcohol, or who are delusional or hallucinatory. Hypnosis should not be used in some cases unless the client has first consulted a physician to determine underlying physical causes.

Can hypnosis cause anyone to do something against their will or that contradicts their values?

As a certified member of the National Guild of Hypnosis, I am ethically required to make only those suggestions that support agree-upon outcomes. Clients are not receptive to suggestions that go against their morals or values–because receptivity is one of the ingredients of successful hypnosis.

How does hypnotic suggestions influence behavior?

When the listener is relaxed, receptive and open to suggestions and experiences visual, auditory, and/or kinesthetic representations of the suggestions and anticipates and envisions that these suggestions will result in future outcomes.

What is therapeutic hypnosis or hypnotherapy and how does it work?

Hypnosis is communication by one individual to another, or communication with the self (self-hypnosis). A natural trance-like state occurs in which one’s attention is narrowly focused and relatively free of distractions. The attention can be focused internally on emotions, thoughts, images, a task, for examples. Examples of trance states are daydreaming and some forms of meditation. Trance is not sleep, although some people get so relaxed that they may fall asleep. This is no problem because some part of the mind continues to listen to the voice of the hypnotists. In trance, sleeping subjects can still follow instructions such as moving a finger, taking a deep breath, or awakening when they are told to do so.