Reflexology is a somewhat unknown medical intervention in today’s society. Due to this general lack of knowledge, there are a significant amount of misconceptions regarding this technique. In this article, we will address a few questions commonly posed by individuals considering or currently receiving a reflexology treatment.
Question #1: What Is Reflexology?
The concept of reflexology is almost entirely based on the idea that certain body parts such as the feet, hands, and ears are directly connected to specific organs and seemingly unrelated anatomical regions.
Using this assumption, physical touch and various pressures are applied to these three aforementioned areas in an attempt to alleviate an ailment affecting the corresponding body part.
Question #2: What Does The Research Say About Reflexology?
Since we have already addressed that this technique is relatively obscure in the medical community, it makes sense that there is not a large body of research on the subject. As with all research questions, the information available both questions the validity as well as supports the effectiveness of reflexology.
It is fair to note that the majority of research available is deemed by critics to be of low quality. There is however several studies conducted on patients with diagnoses such as breast cancer and anxiety that support significant symptomatic relief. This is largely related to the belief that human touch in general tends to have a therapeutic effect on people in general.
Question #3: How Is Reflexology Different From Massage?
Given the fact that both of these techniques involve the application of direct pressure to the body, a common misconception is that they are basically the same thing. However, massage involves applying pressure to a region with the intention of directly relieving some form of ailment in the local area.
With massage, the areas subject to this technique can include virtually any area of the body. On the contrary, reflexology attempts to treat a different anatomical region than the area specifically manipulated. Furthermore, reflexology is limited to very specific body parts previously mentioned (feet, hands, and ears).
Question #4: What Is The Intention Of Reflexology?
By applying pressure to certain body parts, practitioners of this technique seek to release built-up toxins and pressure that may be present in the regions corresponding to the area being palpated. The reported benefits of this release include increased circulation, lymphatic drainage, increased nerve stimulation, and relaxation of overactive muscle tissue.
Question #5: What Can I Expect During A Treatment Session?
As with any medical intervention, your first reflexology session will begin with gaining an overall idea of your medical history, areas causing you discomfort and goals you hope to accomplish regarding treatment. You will then be given ample time to ask any questions you may have regarding the specific treatment and overall purpose of the technique.
Afterwards, a normal treatment session will typically be performed for an hour or so. Due to the collection of the aforementioned health information, expect your first visit to by a little lengthier than sessions moving forward.
If you are interested in beginning a treatment protocol in this technique, there are likely questions you have that were not included in this brief discussion. As with virtually everything under the sun, a quick online search of said questions may provide additional insight.
Scheduling a meeting with an actual reflexologist is most likely the most efficacious method of securing more reliable information, if you have this option. The world of medicine is full of unique concepts and techniques that receive varying reviews from medical professionals and patients alike.
With any of these protocols, giving reflexology a try for yourself is always the best way to decide if it is right for you!