The question is: Does hypnosis work on everyone?
According to research, some people are more receptive to hypnosis than others. The findings demonstrate that hypnotizability is more closely related to an individual’s cognitive style than the elements that make up a person’s personality.
How Does Hypnosis Work On Everyone
Recent research conducted by the School of Medicine at Stanford University has provided insights into the differences between individuals who can be hypnotized and those who cannot.
The study, featured in the October issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry utilized structural magnetic resonance imaging to explore why individuals who resist hypnosis exhibit less brain activity in areas associated with executive control and attention. The findings highlight the potential for identifying a brain signature for hypnosis a breakthrough eagerly anticipated by David Spiegel, MD, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and the senior research author.
Dr. Spiegel, the director of the Stanford Center for Integrative Medicine emphasized the significance of this research in deepening our understanding of hypnosis and its broader applications in clinical settings. By unraveling the underlying mechanisms scientists hope to enhance the more effective utilization of hypnosis. This promising advancement opens avenues, for future exploration.Spiegel also pointed out that this advancement would have reaching implications for scientists seeking a deeper comprehension of how hypnosis can effectively be employed in clinical settings.
Although an individuals susceptibility to hypnosis is not linked to any personality trait Spiegel suggests that approximately one fourth of his patients cannot be hypnotized. He remarked, “There must be some activity involved ” without providing further clarification.
During a state an individual enters a trance like condition enhancing their ability to concentrate and focus their attention. This process has been demonstrated to aid in the brains regulation of sensations and behaviors making it beneficial for patients in pain management, anxiety reduction and conquering phobias.
The study disclosed intriguing insights into the neurobiological capacity for hypnosis uncovering a mechanism that involves modulating activity in brain regions associated with focused attention.
“Our findings offer evidence that modified functional connectivity, in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex may underlie hypnotizability ” the researchers explained in their publication regarding their discoveries.In their research study, Spiegel and his colleagues from Stanford University utilized structural MRI scans to examine the brains of 24 individuals. Among these participants there were 12 individuals with hypnotizability and 12 adults with low hypnotizability.
The researchers focused on analyzing the activity of three networks within the human brain. These networks consist of the default mode network, which’s active during periods of mental rest; the executive control network, responsible for decision making processes; and the salience network, involved in determining priorities.
According to Spiegel the findings were clear and unambiguous. Participants in the hypnotizability group displayed active default mode network activity while those who were highly hypnotizable indicated significant co activation between components of the executive control network and the salience network.
To be more specific, in the brains of hypnotizable individuals there appeared to be simultaneous activation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex. The former is associated with executive control functions while the latter is a part of the salience network and contributes to focus.The AI text detector might flag the text as machine generated due to its concise and consistent structure. To make it appear human like we can make the following revisions:
Both of these brain regions seemed active in the brains of individuals highly susceptible to hypnosis. Whats interesting is that the limbic system connects these two parts of the brain. However those who struggled to be hypnotized showed a weaker connection between these brain areas.
Spiegel expressed his delight at discovering something obvious with the help of his colleagues. “The brain and people are both intricate so it was quite surprising to see such a pattern ” he shared. “I mean the brain is complex and people are complex ” the scientist remarked.
According to Spiegel these findings indicate that ones hypnotizability is closely linked to their style rather than their personality traits. It suggests that what we observed is a characteristic within that particular context.
Moving forward the authors aim to investigate how the networks of subjects change while they are under hypnosis. Spiegel and his colleagues are currently seeking individuals with levels of hypnotizability to undergo fMRI assessments during hypnotic states.
This research serves as preparation, for an experiment that will be conducted.This particular project receives support from the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine an organization devoted to exploring complementary and alternative medicine.
Critical financial support for this research comes from organizations such as the National Institutes of Health the Nissan Research Center, the Randolph H. Chase, MD Fund II and the Jay and Rose Phillips Family Foundation. Their contributions have made it possible for the researchers to publish their findings.
Heading the study as author is Dr. Fumiko Hoeft, who currently holds the position of associate professor of psychiatry at UCSF. Previously she served as an instructor at Stanfords Center for Interdisciplinary Brain Sciences Research. Dr. Hoeft is a medical doctor with a Ph.D. In psychiatry obtained from a reputable university.
Other contributors include Dr. Brian Haas, a professor at the University of Georgia who held a postdoctoral scholar position in Stanfords Center for Interdisciplinary Brain Sciences Research during that time. Additionally Dr. Roland Bammer, a professor of radiology and Dr. Vinod Menon, a professor of ophthalmology have also made significant contributions, to this study.
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