Efficacy of Hypnotherapy

Studies were conducted looking into the efficacy of hypnotherapy. In July, a study out of Stanford definitively concluded the hypnosis leaves “a significant mark on the brain”

What, exactly, happens to the brain when you are in a hypnotic state?

David Spiegel, a psychiatrist at Stanford University School of Medicine, and his colleagues recently decided to scan patients’ brains and see if hypnosis left a mark. It did.

Spiegel and his colleagues screened 545 healthy college students, giving them a test to see how easily they could be hypnotized. The researchers ended up with 36 highly hypnotizable subjects — whom Spiegel nicknamed “the highs.” They also selected 21 low-scoring subjects who couldn’t fall under the spell of hypnosis.

During hypnosis, the scientists found, a region of the brain called the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex became less active. Studies have found that that region helps people stay vigilant about their external environment. Spiegel noted that highly hypnotizable people are also more likely to lose themselves in a sunset or a movie. The activity in their dorsal anterior cingulate cortex may account for that behavior, too.

The scientists also found that the connections between other regions of the brain became stronger. Some of these regions strengthen the bond between the mind and body, regulating how much pain we feel, for example. Those connections could help make hypnotizable people more suggestible.

Since then more studies have come out linking hypnosis to success in IVF, reducing anxiety, and most recently palliative care As studies conclude the benefits of hypnosis in the medical arena, more medical practices and hospitals are adding hypnosis to their patient’s treatment plans.

Source: statnews  for more detail on this topic!

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