Several spells, like Healing Word and Hold Person, require you to see your target. Does this mean that you aren't allowed to target yourself with spells that require you to see your target when you're blinded or invisible? For reference:

Healing Word

A creature of your choice that you can see within range regains hit points equal to 1d4 + your spellcasting ability modifier. This spell has no effect on undead or constructs.

Hold Person

Choose a humanoid that you can see within range. The target must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be paralyzed for the duration. At the end of each of its turns, the target can make another Wisdom saving throw. On a success, the spell ends on the target.


3 Answers 3


If the spell requires you to see a creature to target then you can't target yourself when you are invisible. The exception to this is if either:

  • The spell/effect that caused the invisibility allows you to see yourself
  • You have some other item or effect (like Truesight) that allows you to see invisible creatures

Supporting unofficial tweet from Jeremy Crawford:

You can't see yourself while invisible, unless you're under the effect of a game feature that says you can.

If you are blinded you can't see, and as a result you can't use spells that require you to see the target as you can't see anything


  • A blinded creature can't see and automatically fails any ability check that requires sight.
  • Attack rolls against the creature have advantage, and the creature's attack rolls have disadvantage.

Here are some additional unofficial supporting tweets from Jeremy Crawford: here and here


It doesn't imply anything.

It's specifically stated that you must be able to see the creature in order to target it.

If you can't see the creature, whether that creature is yourself or someone else, then they're not a valid target for the spell.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm mostly wondering if there is a rule in the PHB that I might have missed, one that would specify if you'd be able to target yourself regardless of this restriction. I take it this isn't the case? \$\endgroup\$
    – Squall55
    Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 1:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ I agree with your answer, and so does Jeremy Crawford: twitter.com/JeremyECrawford/status/859555831808892928 \$\endgroup\$ Commented Aug 4, 2017 at 1:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Squall55: you could argue that most biological creatures can sense the position of their own bodies, e.g. knowing whether a leg is bent or not (proprioception). And from this you can argue that a creature can effectively "see" itself via limited blindsight, for the purpose of targeting a spell. e.g. if you want to hit your own arm with a your fist, you'll have little trouble making that happen. (Close your eyes and try it yourself.) Alternate sense like blindsight count for spell targeting, so it's not vision specifically that's special for magic. (Not posting as an answer because not RAW) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Sep 24, 2020 at 2:35

If the spell says you need to be able to see the target, then you have to be able to see the target.

A quote from JC on the official D&D 5e Podcast

You always need a clear path to target a creature with a spell. A creature behind total cover cannot be targeted. But, you don't necessarily need to be able to see them, just that the travel path is clear such as a thick fog (unless the spell specifies that you need you see the target).

If you wanted to, say, cast Invisibility on yourself again (maybe the spell duration was running out), then you can easily do so, since you only need to touch yourself be within reach of yourself.

If, however, you wanted to cast Healing Word on yourself, then since the spell explicitly states that you must be able to see the target, then you could not target yourself if you were unable to see yourself.

Related side note: if you were under the effects of Invisibility, then starting to cast Healing Word would end the Invisibility effect and make you able to target yourself.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Per your side note, greater invisibility is the applicable use-case. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 13, 2020 at 13:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ can you add a link to that podcast (and it may be helpful to note in the body that his statements are no longer official.) \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Oct 13, 2020 at 13:32

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