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Want to quit smoking, lose weight, or manage pain? How about sleep better or limit the harmful effects of stress? This can all be possible with hypnotherapy, a presently disputed form of treatment that nevertheless may possess real potential to provide relief from a variety of conditions.

Hypnosis modifies a person's behavior, attitude, or perception. As such, it has become a popular technique to improve motivation and willpower. It can be used to instill a more positive outlook too, thereby indirectly affecting one's personal and professional spheres. Yet hypnotherapy has proven surprisingly effective on skin conditions like dermatitis, as well as improving the recovery time following surgery.

Despite the myriad of possibilities, little definitive evidence exists. Hypnotherapy therefore remains on the fringe of medicine rather than in its mainstream.

Preview the lesson material:

Warm Up: Discuss the question with your partner for five minutes.

  1. What do you know about hypnosis? Have you ever been hypnotized? Please explain.

Comprehension Questions: Answer the questions before/after your read the article.

  1. According to the article, hypnosis may be disputed, but it definitely works.  T / F
  2. Hypnosis changes a how a person acts or sees the world.  T / F
  3. Hypnosis can affect someone's personal life, as well as their career.  T / F
  4. The medical community hasn't adopted hypnosis yet.  T / F

Discuss: Discuss these questions with a partner. Remember to support your answers.

  1. Do you think hypnosis is a valid form of therapy? Why/not?
  2. If you had an operation, would you use hypnosis as part of your recovery? Why/not?
  3. What other alternative therapies do you know about? How are they used? Please explain.

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