The effects of mind on the body have long been observed in medicine and among the general population. Neurological research methods confirm that changes occur in the nervous system when attitudes and beliefs are changed in human beings.
These changes can have implications for the functioning of physiological systems and consequently can influence health. An individual's mental attitudes can substantially influence the functioning of the body and can help to modify the effects the environment and our genes have on health.
Modern medicine has begun to study scientifically the mechanisms by which the mind can produce its effects on the body. This field of research is called mind-body medicine. The use of hypnosis produces some of the most striking and powerful examples of mind-body interactions, for example, control over pain, blood flow, body temperature and many effects on functioning of organs and glands of the body.
The effects of the hypnotic state and hypnotic suggestions can be used to intensify the actions of the body's healing mechanisms to assist with various medical conditions. Hypnosis has long been recognized as having particularly powerful effects on stress-related conditions and psychosomatic illnesses.
Hypnosis is increasingly being seen by health professionals as an effective therapy for a wide variety of psychosomatic, psychological and behavioural disorders. While hypnosis is not a panacea it has the potential to exert effects on physiological systems in the human organism that can contribute to health and well-being.
In the case of physical conditions, it is important that the client has consulted a qualified physician before attempting to use hypnosis to alleviate the condition. Hypnosis should not be used instead of conventional medicine, in the case of organic conditions, but it is available for use as a complement to their chosen therapy regimen following consultation with their physician.