Hypnotherapy is one of the older psychotherapies and was first used in the eighteenth century in England and France. It was the subject of an early work by Freud and continued to be developed in the twentieth century. Hypno-Psychotherapy is hypnotherapy which is undertaken within the context of psychotherapy.

What is the hypnotic state? Best described as a state of very deep relaxation, it is important to remember that, despite the popular view; a client does not lose awareness during therapy and can break the state if she/he wishes to do so. However, the reasons for this are not fully understood. The client can access subconscious abilities to learn and to redefine their experiences, thus making it possible to come to terms with early or painful experiences. Looking forward, building self-esteem and learning to relax in a deeper way than with some other methods, through self-hypnosis, are also important applications of hypnotherapy.

Recent applications also include learning to control the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, control of the side effects of chemotherapy for cancer patients, and many others.

The value of hypnotherapy has also been recognised in the dental and medical professions (B.M.A. Reports 1892, 1955).

Practitioners should be members of an established professional body with a code of ethics and professional practice, and make this known to clients. Such practitioners will welcome clients who ask for details of the therapist’s qualifications and experience and who ask questions about the therapy being offered.