William Broom Founder, The General Hypnotherapy Standards Council and The General Hypnotherapy Register.
Again, the answer to this question is virtually everyone. Given that hypnotherapy can be utilized to access a person's inner potential and that probably no one is performing to their actual potential, then this answer is literally true. However, it is not just potential which Hypnotherapy is well placed to address but also one's inner resources to effect beneficial change. In this regard, it is the innate healing capacity of our own body that may be stimulated by Hypnotherapy. Consequently, the list of problems which may be amenable to Hypnotherapy is far too long and varied to catalog but certainly includes: stress, anxiety, panic, phobias, unwanted habits and addictions (e.g. smoking, overeating, alcoholism), disrupted sleep patterns, lack of confidence and low self-esteem, fear of examinations and public speaking, allergies and skin disorders, migraine and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Additionally, it has proved of value within surgery, where normal anasthetics have not been practical, in the wider sphere of pain management and in the areas of both sporting and artistic performance enhancement. As an adjunct to other counseling techniques, it can also assist in helping to resolve relationship difficulties and be useful within anger management strategies. Although there remain many other areas of human suffering in which Hypnotherapy may bring relief, there are instances in which it may be contraindicated. These could include some manifestations of depressive illness, epilepsy, psychosis (e.g. schizophrenia) and some breathing problems.
Some Common Concerns:
People are sometimes concerned that they will lose control in hypnosis. However, general consensus indicates that regardless of how deeply people may go in hypnosis and however passive they may appear to be, they actually remain in full control of the situation. They are fully able to talk if they wish to (or not, as the case may be) and can stand up and leave the room at any time. Neither can a hypnotized person be made to do anything against their usual ethical or moral judgement or religious belief. It is likely that the notion of a loss of control stems from most people misconception of stage hypnosis, wherein participants are apparently made to perform all manner of (usually foolish) acts. However, the reader should be aware that participation in a stage act is an entirely voluntary process (thus permission is already given to the hypnotist) and that there can be no such volunteer who is unaware of exactly what they are letting themselves in for!