Hypnosis to induce amnesia ...?

Does that junk I always hear about actually work? does it depend on the person? Is there some other way to induce amnesia?

Also, what are the mental risks to forgetting? Besides things like not remembering loved ones, what are the actual life threatening risks?
Update: Keep in mind:
This is simply for my own personal study for a story I'm writing. I don't plan on using the methods.
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