What reflexology can do for you?
‘The Chinese believe that reflexology stimulates the body into healing itself by improving circulation, reducing stress, pain and restoring natural balance. ‘A therapist may massage your big toe and ankle to calm your endocrine and reproductive system, helping relieve PMS or menopausal symptoms.’
Does Reflexology really work?
Reflexology is generally relaxing and may help alleviate stress. The theory behind reflexology is that areas of the foot correspond to organs and systems of the body. Pressure applied to the foot is believed to bring relaxation and healing to the corresponding area of the body.
What illnesses can reflexology treat?
Cancer–reflexology is regularly used on those suffering from cancer. It is known to reduce symptoms caused by chemotherapy including nausea, pain, constipation, and diarrhea. It can also help with sleep and anxiety. … Circulation – receiving foot reflexology is known to improve your blood circulation to vital organs.
Is reflexology better than a massage?
Reflexology vs. a Foot Massage. While a foot massage may feel the same as are reflexology treatment, a reflexologist will work on areas to promote a healing response in the corresponding organs.
What is Foot Massage and Reflexology?
Introducing foot massages and reflexology, practices which can help to support the well-being of your feet and your body as a whole, since your feet are subject to many tons of pressure over the course of your life. Feet reflexology is a very old practice dating back to ancient Chinese medicine, where it was believed that certain areas on the feet correspond with other body organs, and can help to influence their health.
The foot is believed to have specific reflex points, which under-stimulation can help the body heal itself. Reflexology and foot massages are now commonly used in alternative medicine, as it is considered very safe and likely to benefit you.
Benefits of Foot Massage and Reflexology
1. Helps Control Blood Pressure
While we may not make wild claims that reflexology will permanently cure high blood pressure, there is evidence to indicate that when performed regularly, it can help to lower your systolic blood pressure. It most likely does this thanks to its ability to reduce stress and to help you relax. Cortisol is a known contributor to high blood pressure, so anything you could do to help keep it under wraps would benefit your blood vessel health.
2. Improves Nerve Sensitivity
Reflexology and foot massages seem to be of particular benefit in persons who may have experienced diminished nerve function secondary to another condition. For example, people diagnosed with hypertension or diabetes may experience complications due to neuropathy, which results in loss of sensation in areas of the body, especially the legs and arms. This is more frequent in the legs and can be improved with massage and by directly stimulating the reflex points at the bottom of your feet. Reflexology may also help to improve blood flow to these areas, which would explain the return to function of some of these nerves.
3. Improves Energy Levels
As reflexology is believed to help enhance the function of several other organs, many people report improvements to their energy levels and metabolism to a lesser extent. By improving the function of many accessory organs, the processing of food is likely to become more efficient and you experience a nice boost in energy as a result.
4. Improves Blood Circulation
It seems that one of the most well-known benefits of foot reflexology is its ability to improve blood flow throughout the whole body. Improved circulation translates to more efficient oxygenation of cells and more rapid recovery following a workout or an injury.
5. Helps Promote Sleep
Thanks to its ability to improve the functioning of the nervous system, it also appears that neurotransmitters are better able to promote sleep and relaxation as nighttime approaches. Reflexology has also often been sought out to help manage insomnia, helping to restore your normal circadian rhythm.
6. Improves Liver Function
Virtually anything that you put in your mouth needs to pass through the liver for processing prior to entering the systematic blood circulation. For this reason, the liver endures quite the beating and needs support to function optimally at all times. Any decrease in function of the liver could lead to a dangerous accumulation of waste matter which would’ve otherwise been removed by the organ. Reflexology can help to reset elevated liver enzyme values and ensure that substances are metabolized in an efficient manner, keeping your body safe.
7. Treatment For Migraines And Headaches
Millions of people all over the world suffer from headaches and intractable migraines, needing to resort to medication frequently. However, this is not ideal as these medications could carry a significant risk of side effects. Foot reflexology can help to reduce the pain associated with migraines, by decreasing the impact of the hormone cortisol on our blood vessels, reducing muscular tension, and helping to calm us. Oftentimes headaches and migraines occur due to high-stress burdens or lack of sleep, both of which reflexology sessions can help you with.
8. Speeds Up The Healing Of Wounds
Reflexology is able to improve blood circulation as was previously mentioned, and when combined with an efficient nervous system that quickly relays to the immune system the need for specialized immune mediators, healing can quickly ensue. Of course, the more efficient its process is the faster you will recover and be able to get back to your daily routine as well.
9. Treatment Of Arthritis
While many people advise against massaging arthritic joints, reflexology works by virtue of reducing the need for pain mediators known as prostaglandins, and subsequent inflammatory processes. Thus, even if arthritis affects your wrist, foot reflexology will still help to reduce the pain you experience. People that routinely use reflexology report up to a 40% decrease in painful symptoms, and less need for medication.
10. Useful For Depression
While depression is frequently caused by an imbalance of neurotransmitter levels, lack of sleep or high anxiety and stress levels can induce a state similar to depression. A foot massage and reflexology performed twice-weekly can help to minimize these symptoms, especially when under high stress. Reflexology is even preferred over medication when treating postmenopausal women who may not necessarily need potent drugs, but just a natural way to optimize hormonal and brain chemistry.
11. Chronic Sinusitis
While migraines are attributed to dilated blood vessels under the surface of the scalp, sinus congestion is also caused by a similar mechanism. This is more likely if you suffer from seasonal allergies or asthma. Breathing becomes harder, and you find yourself unable to partake in physical activity.
Foot reflexology can help to relieve symptoms of sinusitis, allowing you to breathe easier and not have to rely on medication all the time.
12. Helps Reduce Swollen Feet
Feet can become swollen for a number of reasons including high blood pressure, heart failure, kidney disease or even pregnancy. Regardless of the cause, you need to find a way to remove excess fluid that is pooling in your feet and ease the discomfort.
Foot massages are advised during pregnancy for this exact reason, as anything that promotes circulation will generally help to reduce swelling of the feet. Reflexology, in addition to improving the circulation, will also stimulate diuresis and enhance kidney function, so that the salt balance of the body remains optimal.
13. Reduces Symptoms Of PMS
Many women experience symptoms of PMS just before their monthly menstrual period, occurring with emotional disturbances, irritability and fatigue. While foot reflexology is not the cure for these symptoms, it does help in dealing with them, often reducing their severity and shortening the length of time you experience them.
Now that you have understood the benefits of reflexology and foot massage on your health, you probably are wondering how you can get it done. While anyone can do a regular foot massage, reflexology is more of a science and requires some amount of study and practice. If you are unsure or unable to master reflexology, you can probably find an alternative health practitioner who is well-versed in the technique. Do your best to schedule a session soon and report back any benefits you observe.
*Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider.
Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended as a diagnosis, treatment, or prescription of any kind. The decision to use, or not to use, any information is the sole responsibility of the reader. These statements are not expressions of legal opinion relative to the scope of practice, medical diagnosis, or medical advice, nor do they represent an endorsement of any product, company, or specific massage therapy technique, modality, or approach. All trademarks, registered trademarks, brand names, registered brand names, logos, and company logos referenced in this post are the property of their owners.