In Reflexology and Cancer I mentioned a client who had mesothelioma and how Reflexology impacted on his quality of life, as he was able to reduce his morphine intake. A Reflexologist never tells a client to change or stop taking prescribed medication and it was true in this case, however the client made his decision based on how he felt.

Today, it is more and more accepted that Reflexology, a complementary therapy used in addition to conventional therapies, has a valid place in cancer care. Pain is a huge factor in the lives of cancer patients and anything that helps to reduce it is welcome, especially if it comes in a natural form such as Reflexology.

Here is a brief outline of the benefits of Reflexology for cancer patients as outlined by Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance1:

  • Relaxation
  • Improved bowel function
  • Pain reduction
  • Improved circulation
  • Soothed tired feet
  • Reduced swelling and fluid retention
  • Encouraged overall healing

Reflexology also impacts on

  • Emotions
  • Appetite
  • Feelings of wellbeing
  • Sleep
  • Mobility3

The above benefits are achieved naturally without any side effects unlike the normally prescribed medication, which can cause extreme sedation and compromise the patient’s quality of life.

Research, involving various forms of cancer, has been conducted worldwide and generally shows that cancer patients have a reduction in pain and anxiety when choosing to receive Reflexology treatments. One male patient, following a day of intrusive medical treatments, said that Reflexology was the only ‘non-insulting thing’ that had happened to his body in the hospital that day2.

Conclusion

Reflexology has an impact on our wellbeing and is showing that it has a right of place in supporting (cancer) patients.

References

  1. Reflexology. Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance, resources for patients and their families. Retrieved from http://www.mesothelioma.com/treatment/alternative/reflexology.htm#ixzz30FvBbly7
  2. Stephenson, N., Dalton, J.A. & Carlson J. (2003). The effect of foot reflexology onpain in patients with metastatic cancer. Applied Nursing Research. 16(4). 284-286.
  3. Teagarden, K. What does the research say about reflexology? University of Minnesota. Retrieved from http://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/explore-healing-practices/reflexology/what-does-research-say-about-refloxology