• Psychologists, doctors, dentists, and other professionals use hypnosis every day
  • Scientists use hypnosis as a research tool to understand how the mind works
  • It is an evidence-based treatment for a variety of conditions including pain
Recently published hypnosis research

Hypnosis and top-down regulation of consciousness (2017)

Devin B. Terhune, Axel Cleeremans, Amir Raz, & Steven Jay Lynn

Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, in press

Hypnosis is a unique form of top-down regulation in which verbal suggestions are capable of eliciting pronounced changes in a multitude of psychological phenomena. Hypnotic suggestion has been widely used both as a technique for studying basic science questions regarding human consciousness but also as a method for targeting a range of symptoms within a therapeutic context. Here we provide a synthesis of current knowledge regarding the characteristics and neurocognitive mechanis...

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Hypnopraxia, a new hypnotic technique for hypnoanesthesia (2017)

Nicolas Droueta, Guy Chedeau

Journal of Clinical Anesthesia

Various hypnotic techniques are used in anesthesia, either on their own or as adjuncts. A new hypnotic technique, hypnopraxia, was tested in 5 patients undergoing various procedures (4 colonoscopies, 1 inguinal hernia repair, and 1 transobturator tape procedure). The patients were accompanied throughout the procedure by an anesthetist trained in hypnoanesthesia and hypnopraxia. Initially developed for use in hypnotherapy, the accompaniment with hypnopraxia relied on the closeness of the link between the anestheti...

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Pain modulation as a function of hypnotizability: Diffuse noxious inhibitory control induced by cold pressor test vs explicit suggestions of analgesia (2017)

Fabrizia Fidanzaa, Maurizio Varaninib, Antonella Ciaramellac, Giancarlo Carlid, Enrica L. Santarcangelo

Physiology & Behavior

The aim of the present study was to compare the effects of explicit suggestions of analgesia and of the activation of the Diffuse Noxious Inhibitory Control (DNIC) by cold pressor test on pain perception and heart rate in healthy participants with high (highs, N = 18), low (lows, N = 18) and intermediate scores of hypnotizability (mediums, N = 15) out of hy...

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Eliminating stroop effects with post-hypnotic instructions: Brain mechanisms inferred from EEG (2017)

Anoushiravan Zahedia, Birgit Stuermerb, Javad Hatamia, Reza Rostamia, Werner Sommer


The classic Stroop task demonstrates the persistent and automatic effects of the meaning of color words that are very hard to inhibit when the task is to name the word color. Post-hypnotic instructions may enable highly-hypnotizable participants to inhibit the automatic access to word meaning. Here we compared the consequences of hypnosis alone and hypnosis with post-hypnotic instructions on the Stroop effect and its facilitation and in...

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Use of Hypnosis, Meditation, and Biofeedback in Dermatology (2017)

Philip D. Shenefelt

Clinics in Dermatology

Hypnosis utilizes trance to access otherwise inaccessible repressed or unconscious memories and features of the psyche and control of physiology not attainable in the ordinary conscious waking state. Medical uses of hypnosis in dermatology include reducing discomfort from itching or skin pain, altering ingrained dysfunctional habits such as scratching, promoting healing of skin disorders, searching for psychosomatic aspects of skin disorders and alleviating them, and reframing cognitive and emotional dysfunctional patterns related to skin disorder...

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What is hypnosis?
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Types of suggestion
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