Reflexology has grown in popularity in the United States and on a global scale, owing to numerous findings on its potent benefits for the physical and mental health of human beings. One large-scale review undertaken in 2008 summarized?168 studies on this ancient healing art, with surprising conclusions, including the fact that reflexology has a positive impact on specific organs, including the kidneys and intestines (since it promotes blood flow to these organs). If you are intrigued by reflexology and you?d like to give it a go, take note of how it can change your life, helping you manage pain and achieve a state of relaxation,?with no side effects at all.
What is Reflexology?
Reflexology, an ancient massage treatment practiced since the age of the pharaohs, is often referred to as an Eastern foot, hand, or ear massage, but?it is so much more than that. During the treatment, the therapist works on specific pressure points which correspond to different organs and systems in the body. Reflexologists?sometimes rely on foot charts, using the latter as a guide to treat specific areas of the body. Sometimes, therapists can use tools such as rubber balls, smooth wooden sticks, etc as an aid, while at others, only the hands are used.
Mental Benefits of Reflexology
According to Foot Palace,?one of the most popular reasons for seeking a reflexology massage, is stress. In the above-mentioned review, researchers used EEG measurements of alpha and theta waves, and they found that blood pressure was decreased and symptoms of anxiety decreased, following reflexology treatment. Other studies have shown that the treatment can soothe depression and improve sleep.
The Physical Benefits of Reflexology
Studies have concluded that reflexology can improve kidney function for dialysis patients, reduce pain related to a vast array of conditions (including kidney stones, osteoarthritis, AIDS, chest pain, peripheral neuropathy of diabetes mellitus etc), and, as mentioned above, increase circulation to vital organs. One study carried out by scientists at Michigan State University found that reflexology can help cancer patients manage their symptoms and perform their daily tasks. One particular area it helped with was breathing; since patients experienced less shortness of breath after a treatment, they were more able to perform daily tasks such as climbing a flight of steps, going shopping, or getting dressed. Interestingly, the study, carried out on women with breast cancer, concluded that ?the most significant changes were documented with the physical symptoms? rather than the mental ones.
Reflexology hails from ancient Chinese and Egyptian tradition, but it is proving to be an interesting therapy for those?seeking to battle stress, anxiety, pain, and fatigue. Studies have shown that it help those with advanced cancer, but also improve kidney function, and boost circulation. Many people also find reflexology to be a soothing treatment that just ?melts the stress, aches and pain away?. If you?ve never tried it before, it might be time to discover how relevant this ancient treatment continues to be today.