About Claire

I first learned hypnosis a teenager, after watching a TV programme where a doctor used hypnosis to calm his paediatric asthma patients. I started by practising on people I knew, including my university flatmates. However, my formal career as a hypnotist began in 2008, after completing training and an internship in clinical hypnosis with Ron Eslinger, RN, CRNA, APN, MA, BCH, CI, at the Healthy Visions Wellness Center in Tennessee. 


I opened my private practice in June 2008, in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and became a hypnosis instructor for the National Guild of Hypnotists in 2011. From 2015-2018 l held an appointment as an adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry, working as a hypnotist in the Comfort Center, a clinic for patients with dental anxiety.


In 2017 I started my training in Human Givens therapy and received my practitioner diploma in January 2020. I am excited to have opened a new practice in Stirling.

Some of the populations I work with

Although I work with clients of all ages, over the years I have specialised in particular client populations:

Survivors of domestic violence or abuse 

Domestic abuse occurs in all walks of life and may be physical or emotional. It is a pattern of controlling, coercive, threatening, degrading and/or violent behaviour, including sexual violence, by a partner in an intimate relationship. The abuse may also be perpetrated on children and affects the whole family. Since 2015 I have volunteered as a support group facilitator for a women and children's centre that provides resources for victims of domestic violence. I also teach workshops that offer coping skills and techniques for stress management, how to stop panic attacks, and recovering self esteem. 

Children and teens with functional gastrointestinal disorders 

I worked closely for several years with the Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology at the University of North Carolina who referred children and teens to me after they had undergone extensive physical testing to determine the cause of symptoms that remained unexplained. GI issues included difficulty eating or swallowing, hiccups, holding onto stool or urine, nausea, unexplained stomach pain, IBS, chronic diarrhoea or constipation. Unexpressed emotions may cause physical symptoms and I also work with children who do have a GI diagnosis, where there is an emotional component.

Teens with anxiety, depression, and/or chronic illness

Teenagers as a group have special needs that are different from adults. Covid-19 is completely disrupting the normal school and university experience, and with the well-known pressures from social media, teens may suffer more than usual from mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, poor body image, disrupted sleep, low self-esteem, loneliness, and academic underachievement. Add chronic illness or disability to that mix and you have a recipe for a problematic adolescence. I teach coping skills, emotional management, practical skills, and strategies for navigating today's tricky world. I have worked with teens with a variety of chronic disorders or conditions: autism, Tourette syndrome, POTS, Crohn's disease, and cancer.

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You can read more information about my credentials and professional activities  below.

Professional Memberships


  • American Psychological Association (APA)

  • APA Division 30 (Society for Psychological Hypnosis)

  • Human Givens Institute, Registered Member

  • General Hypnotherapy Register

  • International Medical and Dental Hypnotherapy Association

  • National Guild of Hypnotists

  • Advanced Integrative Therapy Institute

Credentials and Education

I received my PhD in Educational Psychology from UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education, and have a master's degree in Information Science, from UNC-CH School of Information and Library Science. My undergraduate degree is a BSc in General Science (Chemistry and Psychology) from St Andrew's University in Scotland. In 2020 I received my Human Givens Practitioner Diploma and I am a registered member of the Human Givens Institute, a registered accredited by the Professional Standards Authority. 

  • 2021: Registered Practitioner, General Hypnotherapy Register

  • 2020: Registered member of the Human Givens Institute. Human Givens Diploma HGDipP

  • 2017: Certified Advanced Integrative Therapy (AIT) Practitioner

  • 2016: Certificate in Medical Hypnosis, Hypnotherapy for Health

  • 2015: Domestic violence support group facilitator training, Compass Center, North Carolina

  • 2015: OMNI Hypnosis Training Institute Advanced Training

  • 2012: PhD (Educational Psychology), UNC School of Education, with a dual concentration in:

    • online learning

    • child & adolescent development and disability

  • 2011: Certified Instructor, National Guild of Hypnotists

  • 2010: Transactional Analysis Practitioner (TAP) certificate

  • 2008: Hypnotherapist, certified by

    • the National Guild of Hypnotists

    • the International Medical & Dental Hypnotherapy Association

    • OMNI Hypnosis Training Institute International

  • 2000: MSIS (Master of Science in Information Science), University of North Carolina

  • 1986: BSc (General Science), University of St Andrews, Scotland, UK

de la Varre, C. (2020, August 6-8). The Human Givens: Integrating hypnosis techniques into a solution-focused brief psychotherapy. [Poster presentation]. American Psychological Association, Washington, DC. 

de la Varre, C., Beck, J. Guided Imagery, Mindfulness, and Other Nonpharmacological Techniques for the Management of Acute and Chronic Pain in Dental Patients. Diagnosis and Management of Acute and Chronic Orofacial Pain, UNC School of Dentistry, June 22.


de la Varre, C. (August). What you should know about tinnitus before accepting tinnitus clients. Annual Convention, National Guild of Hypnotists, Marlborough, MA.

de la Varre, C. (August). Parts therapy: Using Transactional Analysis and Internal Family Systems Theory to help your clients. Annual Convention, National Guild of Hypnotists, Marlborough, MA.

de la Varre, C. (August). Listening to the Voice of the Heart. Annual Convention, National Guild of Hypnotists, Marlborough, MA.

de la Varre, C. (August). What you should know about tinnitus before accepting tinnitus clients. Annual Convention, National Guild of Hypnotists, Marlborough, MA.










Addressing Teen Anxiety in the Digital "Village" Health & Healing in the Triangle, 2019

An article in UNC's Daily Tarheel from 2017

Hypnosis Entertains and Helps Local Residents, UNC's Daily Tarheel, 2017