Clinical hypnosis is an important therapeutic tool with an increasingly understood cognitive and neurobiological basis, and evidence for efficacy. Hypnosis involves controlled modulation of components of cognition—such as awareness, volition, perception and belief—by an external agent (the hypnotist) or by oneself (self-hypnosis) employing suggestion. In this article, we describe what hypnosis is, how it can be used in clinical settings, and how it is done.
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Contributors WP wrote the first draft. JP, QD and PDM edited the draft.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed by Mark Edwards, London, UK.