Reflexology

What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is a complementary alternative therapy that focuses primarily on the feet.  It is a therapeutic technique from traditional Chinese medicine in which pressure is applied to the feet (and sometimes hands) without using oils or creams.

Brief history
Dr. William H. Fitzgerald, an ear, nose, and throat doctor, introduced a concept of "zone therapy" in 1915. He believed that certain areas on the feet and hands were linked to other areas and organs of the body.  American physiotherapist Eunice Ingram further developed this zone theory in the 1930's into what is now knows as reflexology.  The origins of Reflexology are believed to be in China about 5,000 years ago, when the Chinese practiced a pressure therapy related to that of acupuncture.

How does Reflexology work?
Reflexology is based on the theory that all of the body’s organs, glands and systems have corresponding points on the feet and hands, and that stimulating these points can increase circulation of blood and energy to improve the function of the body and increase health.  The underlying theory behind reflexology is that there are "reflex" areas on the feet and hands that correspond to specific organs, glands, and other parts of the body. For example:

    * the tips of the toes reflect the head
    * the heart and chest are around the ball of the foot
    * the liver, pancreas and kidney are in the arch of the foot
    * low back and intestines are towards the heel

Practitioners believe that applying pressure to these reflex areas can promote health in the corresponding organs through energetic pathways.  A scientific explanation is that the pressure may send signals that balance the nervous system or release chemicals such as endorphins that reduce pain and stress.

Why do people get Reflexology?

Reflexology is ideal if you want to try a complementary and alternative medicine approach that is safe with very few side effects and enjoy a nice, long foot massage.

    * Stress and stress-related conditions
    * Tension headaches
    * Digestive disorders
    * Arthritis
    * Insomnia
    * Hormonal imbalances
    * Sports injuries
    * Menstrual disorders, such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
    * Digestive problems, such as constipation
    * Back pain

Reflexology is a popular alternative therapy. It promotes relaxation, improves circulation, reduces pain, soothes tired feet, and encourages overall healing.  Reflexology is also used for post-operative or palliative care. Reflexology is recommended as a complementary therapy and should not replace medical treatment.

What is a typical Reflexology treatment like?
You simply need to remove your footwear and then relax on the massage table. You remain fully clothed apart from your feet - a blanket is used to help keep you warm. A reflexology treatment usually lasts between 45 and 60 minutes.  The basic sequence of events is pretty much the same everywhere:
  • Before getting started, you will be asked to fill out a form describing different health problems and symptoms that you may have.
  • You are usually given a bowl of warm water with fragrant oils in it and asked to soak your feet for a few minutes to help relax them.
  • Debi will then dry your feet and you will lie down on the massage table with Debi seated at your feet.
  • She will work on one foot at a time, combining different techniques of stroking, “crawling” and pressure with her fingers on different parts of your foot, concentrating on areas corresponding to problems that you have reported or where she senses issues that need to be addressed.
  • The process will be repeated for the other foot.
What will I feel?
Most people find Reflexology to be very relaxing.  For the most part, Reflexology feels like a foot massage. There may be points in the treatment where it is slightly uncomfortable as pressure is applied to specific points - this is often due to an imbalance in your body's energy pathways but the reflexology massage will help to clear this blockage and discomfort will fade. However, it should never be painful.  If you feel discomfort, be sure to tell Debi. She will always work within your comfort zone.. Overall, it is an incredibly relaxing experience. Many people either fall asleep or enter a state of total tranquillity.

How will I feel after?
Most people feel calm and relaxed after a treatment. They may even feel sleepy.  Occasionally, people feel nauseous, anxious, or tearful, but this is only temporary and is considered to be part of the healing process.  This can happen because the Reflexology massage techniques can assist your body in removing toxins and after your first session your body may be removing more toxins in one go than it normally does which is why you may feel a little out of sorts for a day or two.  Drinking water will help to flush out your system.

Precautions
If you're pregnant, talk with your doctor first and let Debi know.  Reflexology is not recommended in pregnancy as it can sometimes cause bleeding.  If you have cancer please ensure you tell Debi as cancer is often spread via the lymphatic system and there is a theory that Reflexology could in fact assist the spread.  However in some instances Reflexology can help to alleviate the pain caused by cancer and some sufferers do use it as a complementary therapy to assist with their palliative care.  Be sure to give Debi a complete and accurate health history.  If you have foot ulcers, injury, or blood vessel disease such as blood clots, consult your doctor before having reflexology.

How much does it cost and how do I book?
A single one-off treatment costs £25 but it is recommended that you book a series of sessions.  Click here to view the treatment pricelist.  You can book by ringing Debi on 0772 960 0085 or by using the Book Now online option.  You can also use the Contact Debi page to raise any queries - please ensure you leave a contact telephone number or email address so she can get back to you.