What are some of the limits of Hypnotherapists ?

Being a therapist, regardless of the type of therapy or method that is practiced, having an ability to know your own limitations has to be fundamental to the wellbeing of the client. We would not expect a General Practitioner to offer open heart surgery at a routine appointment for Angina, or an airline pilot to fix a cavity in a painful tooth, we would seek the person most qualified to do the best for us.

Training and evidence of competence is a minimum requirement as a Solution Focused Therapist. Offering services that you have not been formally trained in, isn’t doing the best we can for our clients, at the least it could be very expensive and poor value for money for the client, it could be damaging to their wellbeing or not to mention extremely poor public relations for our profession.

The responsibility of the therapist begins as soon as he meets with the client. At the initial consultation, where information is gathered and the explanation of the workings of the mind is given, an assessment can be made on whether the Therapist feels He or She has the required experience to assist in making the clients life a better one. If it is thought that the therapist may be lacking in experience, there are two ethical routes that could be considered. He or she should explain this to the client and let the client help in the decision. The choices should be to refer the client to a more experienced Therapist, or allow the current therapist to seek supervision on the case presented, training could then be given to adequately qualify the therapist to help. Either way it shows a duty of care, which is our primary goal. Continual Professional Development is a requirement of the NCH, allowing therapists to train in areas where they may be inexperienced.

There may be instances where Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is not suitable as a stand-alone therapy, for instance if the client has self-diagnosed himself and is assuming his symptoms are something that they may not be. As therapists we should always seek to find out of any presenting problem has been diagnosed. A client may have symptoms of IBS, but has he been to the doctors to rule out other illnesses with similar symptoms? He or She may have what they feel is Migraine, but have brain tumours been ruled out first? Finding out if clients are on any medications and more importantly what they are used for, is also very important as we can asses if we need to contact their GP to clarify the treatment we may be offering as complimentary to the treatment the have prescribed, as in when a client is on strong anti-depressants. We cannot diagnose, we cannot recommend or dismiss any advice given to the client from His or Her GP, we can just support this with what we do. I had a client who came to me with Psoriasis that he believed was stress related, although stress can flare Psoriasis, the underlying condition of skin cells replicating themselves too quickly is sometimes only controlled by steroids and vitamin creams. After a diagnosis from his GP and medication prescribed, Solutions Focused Therapy was used to reduce anxiety in his life, the stress response that could, amplify the flare ups of Psoriasis were suitable reduced to allow the client to control his skin condition easier. 

What we say we can offer, on any website, flyer or business card, has to be the truth. We cannot advertise “Miracles”, although we may encourage the client to imagine what their life would be like if one happened! we cannot guarantee success rates that are unachievable, we cannot turn water into wine. But we can offer hope and explain the scope of the treatments given. We can help to reduce anxiety, we can help to reduce phobia, we can assist with helping clients seek a healthier lifestyle, but we cannot give guarantees. Those that want to be helped, will be helped, those that want their issue to go away with out playing a part in the process will be disappointed. What we offer is a working partnership to assist the client in making positive steps to a better life.

We have to keep the best interests of our client at the foremost of our minds, if we cannot help them, we must discuss this with them. If they need more specialist help, we can assist in finding this if appropriate. If they, or anyone else in is danger from there behaviours, we ethically and morally have to react in the most appropriate way. There is no place for vanity, we can admit that we are not experienced enough and we have to always think that if we fail, we have failed another human being who came to us for help…………. something we cannot do!!!

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