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What They Do

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Hypnosis is an altered state of consciousness similar to meditation or deep prayer. The person being hypnotized is always in control, aware of the surroundings and very receptive to suggestions.

Forensic hypnotist Paul Kincade has been instrumental in getting legislation passed in the state of Nevada that permits post-hypnotic testimony.

"As a result of our success rate, I do see the word spreading....It's really an excellent law enforcement tool -- provided it's properly conducted," says Kincade.

So do hypnotists really swing a gold watch in front of the patient's face in order to hypnotize them? "No, that's Hollywood," says James Ramey of the National Council of Medical and Clinical Hypnotherapy. Instead, hypnotists use relaxation techniques and simply talk to their patients.

Hypnosis can be used to treat overeating, smoking, panic attacks, pain, depression, anger, addictions and much more.

Hypnosis was officially endorsed by the American Medical Association in 1958. Psychotherapists, psychologists, counselors and other health professionals often go back to school to receive hypnosis training, which they use in their practices.

Hypnotists must possess high physical and emotional energy. Dealing with the career's day-to-day problems can cause stress and emotional burnout.

Because many hypnotists are self-employed, they're able to set their own hours. However, they may have to work at night or on the weekend in order to see patients.

At a Glance

Administer hypnosis in medical and law enforcement areas

  • No gold watch required!
  • Hypnosis was officially endorsed by the American Medical Association in 1958
  • Certification from the National Guild of Hypnotists is recommended