People struggling with stress may find reflexology to be helpful to induce relaxation. The therapy also comes with a variety of health benefits thought to be brought about by neural stimulation. In addition, reflexology may be a useful complementary therapy for people struggling with certain health conditions.
What is Reflexology?
Also known as zone therapy, reflexology operates on the idea that specific areas on the feet, hands, and ears connect with particular neural pathways in the body. Similar to acupuncture, reflexology uses applied pressure to isolate and target a particular area of the body. This applied pressure works to stimulate the neural pathways. The stimulation of the nerves serves as a neural exercise and helps clear the pathways. The overall function and efficiency of the neural pathways are believed to be improved through this. During a single session, a reflexologist may stimulate as many as 7,000 nerve endings. Nerves are responsible for communication in all parts of the body. Nerve involvement in every bodily function is what leads to the numerous claimed benefits of reflexologists.
There is still a need for more research to determine exactly what benefits may be gained through reflexology. Based on the limited research available, possible benefits include pain reduction, anxiety relief, managing labor pain, and providing sinus relief. Some health conditions may benefit from reflexology as a complementary therapy in addition to their regular treatment. In one study, patients suffering from cancer found relief from their chemotherapy side effects through it. It was also observed that these patients experienced less anxiety and as a result, they were able to sleep better. While reflexology can be a great option, it may not be safe for everyone. Before starting, it is important to first be cleared by your doctor.
A reflexology session may take place in a spa-like atmosphere that utilizes low lighting and soft music. Sessions usually range from half an hour to a full hour. Before the session starts, the reflexologist will take time to assess your needs and create a plan. Your particular needs could lead them to perform reflexology on your hand and ears in addition to your feet. These sessions can affect everyone a little differently. While some individuals will end their session feeling calm and relaxed, others may feel refreshed and experience a rush of energy instead.
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