Reflexology is an extremely effective form of therapeutic foot massage that has carved an impressive niche in the field of complementary medicine. It is a holistic healing technique and as such aims treat the individual as an entity, incorporating body, mind and spirit.
It is a specific pressure technique, which works on precise reflex points on the feet corresponding with all body parts. Pressure is applied to the reflex area, causing physiological changes to take place in the body as the body’s own healing potential is stimulated.
The goal of reflexology is to trigger the return to homeostasis.
History of Reflexology
The roots of reflexology are embedded way back in ancient history when pressure therapies were recognized as preventative and therapeutic medicine. A widely held theory is that it originated in China some 5000 years ago. The oldest documents depicting the practice of reflexology were unearthed in Egypt, dating back to around 2500 BC.
Today many of these same techniques have been developed into a modern scientific method called reflexology, which was developed by an American called Dr Fitzgerald and brought to this country by Doreen Bailey in 1966.
What joins the ancient with the modern is a long established principal that there are energy zones that run throughout the body and reflex areas in the feet that correspond to all major organs, glands and body parts.
Benefits of reflexology include:-
- Relieves stress and tension, having a deeply releasing effect.
- Improves blood circulation, thus increasing the efficiency of all organs and cells.
- Helps to release trapped nervous energy and improves neural efficiency.
- Improves waste removal and elimination.
- Improves the immune system by activating the body’s self healing process.
- Can help improve specific health problems e.g. headaches, infertility, depression, anxiety, IBS and many more.
Reflexology should, therefore, be experienced on a regular basis to maintain a healthy body and mind.
Reflexology and end of life
In cases such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease, although it may not be capable of removing the cause ot the disease, it can help make the patient more comfortable and the pain more bearable. It can significantly improve the patient’s general condition, activate excretory organs, stimulate the respiratory system and help the patient achieve better control of bladder and bowels.
Reflexology can thereby, improve the quality of life.
Reflexology and Pregnancy
Reflexology is often used to soothe the aches and pains in your back and joints that are taking a beating from your growing girth. It can give you relief from some of your most persistent and wide-ranging woes. These may include morning sickness, heartburn, swelling in your legs (if not due to preeclampsia), constipation, high blood pressure (again, as long as it appears without the other symptoms of preeclampsia), insomnia, bladder problems, mild cramping, and even hemorrhoids. In addition, reflexology helps to reduce emotional stresses, such as depression and anxiety. It is often used in the forth trimester to help relax the mother and induce/stimulate the onset of birth.. As with almost any alternative therapy, you should consult your practitioner before you begin reflexology treatments. It is not recommend in the first trimester.
What You Can Expect
On your first visit I will undertake a detailed review of your medical history. You will then be asked to remove your shoes and socks and then be seated in a reclining position.
I will examine your feet before starting a firm and precise massaging motion with either thumb or fingers. You are likely to feel local areas of tenderness. These areas correspond with parts of the body that are out of balance.
The degree of tenderness will be an indicator of how out of balance the corresponding part of the body actually is. Sensitivity varies from person to person but the whole process should not be too uncomfortable.
Initial treatments – 90 minutes, thereafter – 60 minutes.
Can everyone enjoy reflexology?
This therapy is suitable for most adults but there are certain conditions where you should avoid reflexology. To ensure the continued well being of clients, all treatments begin with a consultation, which enables me to make sure that reflexology is suitable for you. In some instances your doctor’s permission may be required before treatments may commence, for example if you have diabetes. A confidential record card will be kept with any relevant details for future treatment.