The Beauty of Reflexology: A Complete Medical Guide
History of Reflexology
Reflexology has been in practice sine the ancient times. By 2330 BCE, the Egyptians were already using this technique as a medical therapy for ailments. This was also applicable in China and Japan in 2704 BCE and 690 CE respectively.
Reflexology was first introduced to the west in the 19th century when Russian and European scientists began to study the nervous system. It became widely employed in the medical field for some time, before the emergence of surgery and drug prescriptions. However, reflexology still thrived and in 1990, it was first introduced in America by a specialist from Connecticut known as Dr. William Fitzgerald. In 1938, Eunice Ingham (a physiotherapist by profession) successfully came up with a system of reflex areas. Between 1980 and 1990, Asians rediscovered the old techniques of Chinese reflexology. These techniques were transferred to the younger generations who developed them to make reflexology a success as it is throughout Asia today.
What is Reflexology?
Reflexology is the scientific study of the relationship between reflex actions and how the body is affected by them. It is the application of pressure to the feet and hands by using specific thumbs and fingers. Oil, creams and lotions are not normally employed in reflexology because they minimize the effect of the pressure applied. Reflex charts are used to identify the areas on the hands and feet that correspond to the different organs of the body.
In reflexology, pressure is applied to specific parts of the feet and hands to create effects on the points applied or to other parts that are connected to the point of application. The points (where pressure is applied), called reflexes, are located on the hands and legs. Reflexology supports natural cure from the inner part of one’s body. It developed from the concept that the nerves on the hands and feet are linked to other parts of the body so when there is an action on a particular point on the hand or foot, a corresponding response is created in the body. Pressure is applied by using fingers or thumbs by a professional, known as a reflexology specialist.
The right hand or foot takes care of the right side of the body while the left hand or foot takes care of the left side of the body. Organs that are located on the right and left sides (such as the kidney) can be treated via any foot or hand. Researchers in reflexology state that reflexology aims to promote the free flow of energy to every organ or muscle in the body. According to them, the body system stops functioning normally when energy is prevented from flowing freely to the muscles and organs. Factors that prevent the free flow of energy include ill fitting shoes and lack of body exercises. The overall aim of reflexology is to release the body’s natural pain killer known as endorphin. When endorphins are released into the blood stream, the circulation of oxygen and nutrient improves and waste products are removed more effectively.
What are the Benefits of Reflexology
Reflexology is unique because it is used for complete treatment. Instead of addressing specific symptoms, reflexology helps to treat an organism as a whole being. Thus, reflexology helps to cleanse the body completely. It makes the glands work effeciently, thereby reducing physical and emotional stress. Reflexology can be used for treatment of back pain, migraine, sleep disorders, injuries and arthritis. It also provides long lasting cure for congestion. Apart from treating physical illness, reflexology also has some psychological benefits. It can also increase happiness, self confidence and concentration. Since it treats an organism as a whole being, it helps to prevent disorders from occurring.
What Techniques are used in Reflexology
Specific thumbs and fingers are used to exert pressure on the feet and hands. Reflexology works best when there is a colleague to help apply the pressure. However, when there is nobody around, tools such as a golf ball or wooden foot roller can be used for self help. Techniques for reflexology can be divided into hand and foot techniques.
Hand Techniques: Reflexology on the hand can be done at time intervals of 10-45 minutes. Hand techniques can be done by self or with the help of a specialist. Reflex points on the hand can be found on charts available online. Modes of applying pressure include massaging and squeezing of target areas. Pressure should be applied gently to avoid pains.
Hand reflexology is particularly used to stop vomiting. However, the person vomiting should not be very sick for this to be effective. This reflexology technique works by pouring cold substance (preferably water) on the wrists. The idea behind this is that the energy meridians in the hand that affect the different parts of the body all pass through the wrist. Therefore, when cold water is applied to the wrist, it cools the system and vomiting stops almost immediately (within 30 seconds).
Foot Technique: Just like the hands, the feet have reflex points where pressure must be applied. These reflex points can also be found on charts available on the internet. The tip of the foot represents the head while the center of the foot represents the center of the body. Usually, reflexology on the foot starts from the toes downwards so as to encourage relaxation. Going in the opposite direction will create discomfort.
- History of Reflexology
- Reflexology History
- The History of Reflexology
- The History and Impact of Reflexology
- The History of Reflexology (in Europe and America)
- Benefits of Reflexology
- Numerous Benefits of Reflexology
- Understanding the Benefits of Reflexology
- History and Benefits of Reflexology
- Why Reflexology: The Benefits
- Reflexology Charts
- Reflexology Charts for Right and Left Feet
- Simple Reflexology Charts
- Foot and Hand Charts
- Hand Reflexology for Headache