Don't be the kind of hypnotist who goes way beyond their scope of practice.
Hypnotists hold remarkable potential as catalysts for personal transformation, yet with great power comes the weighty responsibility.
This is especially true when it comes to deciding if and when to refer clients to medical practitioners. While hypnosis can be a powerful tool in overcoming challenges and achieving goals, there may be circumstances where a client's issues necessitate medical attention.
In this blog post, we'll explore:
- Situations where a hypnotist should refer clients.
- How hypnotists and doctors can work together.
- How to get training to become an excellent hypnotist.
When the Problem Is Beyond the Scope of Hypnosis
It may be hard to admit, but hypnosis isn’t the solution for every problem.
If a client presents with symptoms that are outside the scope of hypnosis or if their condition requires medical attention, the hypnotist should encourage the client to seek medical attention.
Clients may experience unexpected symptoms or reactions during hypnosis. For example, if a client reports chest pain, shortness of breath, or other symptoms that suggest a heart attack or stroke, the hypnotist should immediately call for emergency medical assistance.
A hypnotist is always responsible for the overall ecology of a client in his care. Knowing our limitations keeps both us and our clients safe from harm.
Don’t: Prescribe, Treat or Diagnose
Read: What Can I Treat as a Hypnotherapist? (Or Why We Don’t Care About Labels) (link)
Unless they’re also medical professionals, hypnotists are not qualified to diagnose medical conditions or give medical advice.
The scope of hypnosis practice varies across different regions. As a general guideline to avoid legal trouble, we teach our students to abide by the three DON’Ts: don't prescribe, don’t treat and don’t diagnose.
“Don't prescribe” means that you mustn't tell the person to take anything into their body. Even if you're just telling them to drink more water, that counts as a prescription, which we aren't allowed to do.
“Don't diagnose” and “don't treat” mean we aren't allowed to tell someone they have a specific medical condition or to treat any specific condition without medical supervision, even if that label was given by somebody else.
While hypnosis can be a powerful tool for promoting relaxation, reducing stress and anxiety, and managing pain, it is not a substitute for medical treatment. Hypnotists should refer clients to medical practitioners for proper diagnosis of any physical or mental health conditions.
Stay Up-to-Date With Current Medical Research and Consult With Medical Professionals
It doesn’t hurt to do our homework.
Staying up-to-date with current medical research and consulting with medical professionals definitely helps us understand the situations many clients are going through, and shape our hypnosis interventions accordingly.
It can also help us recognize certain symptoms, and give clients clearer suggestions on what kind of medical attention they should seek. It’s a good idea to keep in touch with a handful of doctors of different specialties who we trust and refer clients to them whenever necessary.
Maintain Clear Communication With Clients
Our clients should know this stuff, too.
Hypnotists should educate and maintain clear communication with clients about the scope and limitations of hypnosis, and the importance of seeking medical attention when necessary
With clear and honest communication and rapport (link), hypnotists can help them make informed decisions about their health and well-being. We should also encourage clients to communicate any concerns or questions they have about hypnosis and their health.
Act in Accordance With Ethical and Legal Guidelines
Hypnotists should be aware of the laws and regulations governing the practice of hypnosis in their jurisdiction and ensure that they are complying with them. Additionally, a hypnotist should adhere to ethical principles such as informed consent, confidentiality, and respect for clients' autonomy to ensure that they are providing the best possible service and care.
Ultimately, this approach can help build trust and foster positive relationships between hypnotists, medical practitioners, and their clients.
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As we've seen, there are a number of situations where it's important for a hypnotist to know when to refer clients to medical practitioners. But it’s equally important to do solid work within the scope of what a hypnotist can actually do.
When you are ready to continue your journey toward becoming a world-class hypnotist, we'd recommend getting started at Mike Mandel Hypnosis Academy (MMHA).
At MMHA, you can go from absolute beginner to confident hypnotist FAST.
With bite-sized, easy-to-understand videos, you’ll learn foundational principles and skills of hypnosis, meaning you’ll NEVER need a script. You’ll interact directly with us, guest trainers, and students worldwide.
In addition to building and reinforcing a solid foundation in hypnosis, MMHA contains tons of advanced techniques which you’ll learn quickly and effortlessly, making it the perfect training for beginner and experienced hypnotists alike.
You get the first few lessons free for 14 days without ever needing to put in your credit card details. It's the easiest way to start learning hypnosis today.
Click here to get started at the Mike Mandel Hypnosis Academy.