The Benefits of Reflexology

Reflexology is a non intrusive therapy that can be enjoyed by everyone, from newborn babies to those receiving end of life care. Reflexology has many benefits, it can be used as a preventative therapy,  maintaining good health and wellbeing or used to help cope with a chronic illness or an acute condition.

Treatments aim to help specific symptoms but overall the aim is to restore the body’s natural balance by promoting self healing and creating an enhanced feeling of wellbeing.

As reflexology is a holistic therapy it treats the whole person not just the current symptoms.  Many people feel a general improved sense of wellbeing as well as an improvement in their presenting condition. Due to this some people choose to return for a regular (usually monthly) maintenance appointment once their condition has improved through regular appointments.

Reflexology for:

Relieving Stress

Today stress is a major contributing factor to ill health. We all have periods of short term stress – a short term response to an immediate problem – that will quickly fade without any long term effects. However, stress becomes a problem when the body becomes exhausted and is left susceptible to illness and disease. It is now widely recognised that stress causes disease, including and not limited to high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and heart disease:

There are physical and physiological responses to stress on the body.

Stress can affect all systems in the body and cause Headache, Muscle Tension or Pain, Chest Pain, Fatigue, Low Libido, Menstrual problems, IBS, Constipation, Diarrhoea, Indigestion, Stomach ulcers & Sleep Issues.

Physiologically we can find ourselves feeling anxious, restless, lacking in motivation and focus, overwhelmed, irritable, angry, sad or depressed.

Reflexology is a proven stress buster and therefore acts as a preventative measure by helping to de-stress and reduce anxiety. Reflexology is a wonderful way to relax, alleviate everyday stress and tension and rebalance and revitalise the body and mind.

More information can be seen on health websites such as the WebMD

Fertility

Reflexology is a calm and relaxing, holistic therapy that may ease any stress and tension felt emotionally and physically by the couple during this period.

Reflexology does not claim to cure fertility issues but regular treatments can help the couple prepare for pregnancy mentally and physically. Additionally for most people, failure to conceive compounds the stress and hinders fertility even further.

Reflexology as a stress reliever can have a positive impact on your fertility by reducing the stress hormones circulating in your body, and increasing the levels of endorphins. Please see What to Expect for more on Reflexology for Fertility.

An increasing number of women believe that reflexology has helped them to conceive. Many clinics are now encouraging its use alongside fertility treatments. Please see this link for some relevant articles on Reflexology and Fertility.

Maternity Reflexology

Reflexology can help support you emotionally and physically during your pregnancy journey.  Increasingly, maternity wards and clinics all over the UK are seeing the benefits of Reflexology, which may help reduce labour intensity and duration.  During pregnancy, it is a wonderful time for a treatment, promoting circulation & relaxation, reducing stress and anxiety and encouraging better sleep, as well as reducing the pain or discomfort of any physical symptoms you may be having.

A randomised controlled trial of pregnant women receiving reflexology compared to a foot bath or usual care showed those that received reflexology had a clinically important reduction in pain and its associated stress in labour. Please see this link for more information on this research.

During later stages of the pregnancy or at full term, reflexology encourages the body and mind to relax, creating the perfect conditions for the birth.

Post natal reflexology encourages better sleep and repair at a time when sleep is scarce! As hormones struggle to rebalance, you can be left anxious, emotional and low. Couple this with lack of sleep and it can be a difficult time. Reflexology can reduce the anxiety and stress that can sometimes come with being a new mother.

Reflexology for perimenopause and menopause

Menopause is a a new beginning, and an opportunity for transformation and growth however it can be marred by some less appealing symptoms!
Chronically elevated levels of cortisol increase the likelihood of severe peri menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats, palpitations, irritability, anxiety, poor memory, fatigue, headache, migraine, hair loss, poor concentration to name a few.
Lifestyle changes during peri-menopause can help and one recommended positive change we can make is including time for relaxation.

Reflexology for everyone

Reflexology is suitable for everyone from newborn babies to those receiving end of life care.

One of the beauties of this therapy is that you can also learn self help techniques. You can use these at home on yourself or with someone you care for, a baby, child, partner or parent. If you are a carer and would like to discuss a home or hospital visit as well as the opportunity to learn techniques that you can use on someone you are caring for, please contact me.

It is amazing to see the impact that such a gentle treatment can have on a child coping with a physical or emotional difficulty. Children sometimes struggle to verbalise what is worrying them and we see the result in changed behaviour affecting relationships, sleep and health.

Children are especially receptive to reflexology but would usually suit shorter appointments. This can be discussed when making the appointment and the timing suited to their needs.

Please note that anyone under the age of 18 will require a guardian present during the duration of the appointment.

When should I not have a treatment?

There are occasions when it is advisable not to have a reflexology treatment such as when presenting symptoms of infectious disease, suffering from known thrombosis or DVT, severe cellulitis, phlebitis or shingles, varicose veins on the foot or if you are about to have medical tests (e.g. blood tests.) If this is relevant to you and you wish to discuss this further please contact me and I will be happy to signpost you to a more suitable therapy in line with medical advice.