Reflexology Basics

What is reflexology?

Reflexology


Exactly how reflexology works has not been established. Reflexology, in its early form, was used thousands of years ago and is known to have been practiced as early as 2330 B.C. by the Egyptians1.
Reflexology is a form of "alternative" or "complementary" medicine. It is a massage treatment that encourages energy flow to specific areas (reflex areas) in the feet and hands, but usually the treatment concentrates on the feet. It’s commonly used to treat a wide range of disorders, from headaches and migraines to sinus congestion, neck and back pain, digestive disorders, circulatory problems and hormonal problems. It may also help with worry and anxiety.2


Does Reflexology work?

Complementary medicine refers to disciplines that are not considered to be part of mainstream medical care. Although there is growing evidence that certain complementary therapies are effective, the field is still poorly researched. However, many people do believe that complementary therapies can help in a variety of ways.

The Reflexology Treatment

Complementary medicine refers to disciplines that are not considered to be part of mainstream medical care. Although there is growing evidence that certain complementary therapies are effective, the field is still poorly researched. However, many people do believe that complementary therapies can help in a variety of ways.
Therefore, in theory, reflexology offers a means of treating both the whole body, and the body as a whole.

As pressure is applied to the different areas, the patient will feel different sensations that relate to the degrees of imbalance in the corresponding part of the body - the more discomfort felt, the more out of balance the corresponding part of the body.

Sometimes, as a result of the treatment, the patient may suffer from such symptoms as tiredness, runny nose, and passing more urine, but these are only short-term reactions and are positive signs that treatment is having an effect.

Is Reflexology Worth Trying?

The lack of proof that it works shouldn’t necessarily deter anyone from trying reflexology (although you should, of course, bear it in mind). Reflexology is generally suitable for all age groups. Many people will find treatment leaves them feeling more relaxed and with a sense of well-being.

Practitioners of Reflexology

Complementary practitioners (other than osteopaths and chiropractors) can legally practice without any training. When looking for a practitioner, it is recommended you speak to your primary health care provider and see if they can recommend a practitioner or refer you. Always choose a trained practitioner and check with your health insurer top see if the cost of the therapy will be covered.3

Sources

1 International Institute of Reflexology Visited 19 November 2008
2.University of Minnesota Visited 19 November 2008
3.The National Pain Foundation Visited 19 November 2008

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