Hypnosis: this is what happens in our brains

December 17, 2009 | In: Science facts

For the first time, a group of British scientists, from Hull University, seems to have managed to identify some neural changes occurring in the brain when we are subjected to hypnosis.

This would show how hypnosis would have a “real” effect on the mind, not only due to simple effects on the body state of relaxation, say the authors of the journal Consciousness and Cognition.

It’s not the first time when scientists used magnetic resonance imaging to examine brain activity of subjects exposed to hypnosis.

At other times, tests were conducted when subjects performing certain acts under hypnosis and so it was not clear whether neural changes were associated with hypnotic or actions they do, explains William McGeown, author of the study.

In their experiment, McGeown and his colleagues have taken for examination 10 subjects who were very sensitive to hypnosis and 7 subjects who were less susceptible to hypnosis, analyzing their neural activity with magnetic resonance.

As a result, those who responded to the effect of hypnosis showed a decrease in neural activity in areas that are activated when we are inattentive or dreaming with eyes open.

In the authors this study demonstrate that hypnosis favors a higher degree of attention of the mind, causing the brain to be more receptive to information.

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