- What is reflexology?
- How does reflexology work?
- What will I feel?
- Why do people get reflexology?
- How will I feel after?
- What is Important Foot Care ?
Reflexology is a type of foot massage used in alternative medicine. It's considered a form of bodywork that focuses primarily on the feet.
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
He believed that certain areas on the feet and hands are linked to other areas and organs of the body. This concept was expanded by physiotherapist Eunice Ingham into the modern practice of reflexology.
Practitioners believe that applying pressure to these reflex areas can promote health in the corresponding organs through the boby's energetic pathways.
Dr. William H. Fitzgerald, an ear, nose, and throat doctor, introduced this concept of "zone therapy" in 1915. American physiotherapist Eunice Ingram further developed the zone theory in the 1930's into what is now known as reflexology.
A scientific explanation is that the correct application of pressure may send signals that balance the nervous system or release chemicals such as endorphins that reduce pain and stress.
Most people find reflexology for the most part to be very relaxing.
Reflexology and foot massage, done properly, shouldn't be painful. If you feel discomfort, be sure to tell the reflexologist. He or she should work within your comfort zone.
Some areas may be tender or sore, and the reflexologist may spend extra time on these points. The soreness should decrease with pressure.
If you're ticklish, don't worry! The reflexologist applies firm pressure to the feet , avoiding the sensations that cause tickling..
|--Stress and stress-related conditions
--Menstrual disorders, such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
--Digestive problems, such as constipation
Foot Reflexology and Hand 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. A study in the American Cancer Society journal found that one-third of cancer patients used reflexology as a complementary therapy.
Reflexology is recommended as a complementary therapy and should not replace medical treatment.
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.
If you're pregnant, talk with your doctor first and let the reflexologist know.
Be sure to give the reflexologist 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.
FEET ARE IMPORTANT!
Your feet are an important part of your body. People do not take care of their feet as much as their face and other parts of their body. Twenty five percent of the bones of your body are in your feet. If any of these bones are misaligned, your entire body could be affected. You might not even feel that you have a foot problem but it can cause knee problems, hip or low-back problems, shoulder and neck problems and even headaches or stomach aches. Foot problems can also cause emotional stresses and physiological changes in the body. Examples of this would be adrenal stress, improper blood sugar levels, fatigue and several others. Many doctors look to the mechanics of the foot for proper posture but there is so much more making up the foundation that we stand, walk and run on.
What are the benefits of reflexology
To stay happy and healthy, you need:
GOOD SENSATION - the ability to feel pressure, injury, heat, cold and pain.
GOOD CIRCULATION - a constant supply of food and energy and a way to get rid of waste materials. Extra loving care must be given to your feet in order to prevent injury and infection. This is especially important if they have developed a problem with circulation of sensation
Reflexology of the foot has become very popular as an alternative treatment for health problems. There are reflexes that are related to organs, glands and other parts of the body on the bottom of the foot. The reflexology practitioner will find the points that are active and use acupressure-like stimulation on these points to treat the reflexes which in turn helps these organs, glands and body parts to work better. What causes these reflexes to be present are the misalignment of the bones of the foot causing tender spots or trigger-points. With Applied Kinesiology diagnosis and treatment of the foot, these bones will be adjusted back into their proper places. When the bones are aligned properly, the reflexes on the bottom of the foot will be stimulated as you walk.
When your foot is working properly, you are getting automatic reflexology while you walk or run.
Misalignments of the bones of the feet also cause problems with the acupuncture meridians that travel through the foot. Meridians are highways of energy in the body that flow in general areas and directions. When they are blocked by a misaligned bone, health problems can be caused to the related organs or glands. The foot contains meridians related to the Spleen, Liver, Stomach, Kidney, Bladder and Gallbladder. Since all of the acupuncture meridians of the body either begin or end on the feet or hands, the health of you foot is important for a proper balance of the acupuncture energy system. In Chinese medicine, the definition of disease is an imbalance (either too much or too little) of energy (Chi) in the body.
This reflexology process makes the beautiful contoured bottom of the foot feel like you're "Walking on Air " or "Going Barefoot ." It re-acclaims the basic nature and beauty of the foot.
How do I know if I have POOR CIRCULATION ?
First of all, you must love your feet and pay attention to your them !
They are telling you they need help.
- if they hurt while walking or resting
- if they lack sensation(feeling).
- If they are cold, pale, blue, or swollen
- If they have sores that do not heal.
- If the skin is thick, dry, scaly, calloused, or cracked.
What are its causes ?
Blood is prevented from either reaching or leaving your feet because:
- Arteries become rigid or hard (arteriosclerosis).
- Arteries become clogged or blocked by fatty deposits.
- Veins become blocked or narrowed so fluid and waste materials spill out into the surrounding foot and ankle tissue.
- Diabetes causes blood vessels to age and harden fasten than normal.
The foot is a delicately balanced mechanism far more complicated than the finest watch. Perfect balance is essential to retain foot comfort and the maintenance of this balance depends upon natural foot function.
Any health symptoms that are related to foot problems will get worse as the day goes on because your feet become more stressed as the day goes on.
Muscles that support the shape and function of the feet are related to the adrenal glands and the bladder. Problems with these muscles can cause foot problems and eventual deformation of the feet can occur. "Shin splints" (pain in the lower leg while walking or running), "Dropped Arches" or "Flat feet" and "Plantar Fasciitis" can also be caused from the muscles of the feet not working properly.
The foot has many nerve receptors in it that send important information into our central nervous system. This information is used to track where certain parts of the body are at every moment and in what direction, how fast they are moving and how much pressure they are receiving. Problems with the feet can send confusing information to the central nervous system which can cause mechanical problems in the body. As we walk, each joint of the foot sends information to the nervous system so that it can turn our muscles on and off our muscles. The turning on and off of the muscles allows us to walk, if they didn't turn on and off we would not be able to move properly. This is one way that foot problems can cause knee, hip, neck, shoulder, jaw problems and even headaches. If a muscle is not turning on when it is supposed to, then a muscle on the other side of the body will become too tight because the balance is upset. When it becomes too tight, it pulls the bones out of alignment causing problems.
It is important to treat the foot with respect and to invest in its good health. Applied reflexology is very important to restore the proper function to the foot. Another important factor for prevention and to maintain the health of your feet is wearing good shoes.
YOUR FEET NEED TO BE HEALTHY, STRONG AND HAPPY FEET !
Remember the old adage, "If your feet hurt, you hurt all over." It is true the comfort of your feet greatly influences the comfort of your whole body and your disposition.
Paul and Patricia Bragg wrote the following at the beginning of their book on feet:
"Almost all of us are born with perfect feet. It's the abuse we give them that makes us limp into adulthood, crying, "My feet are killing me." So listen to the experts and pamper your feet the same way you take care of other parts of your body. The rewards will be greater then you can imagine.