Reflexology may be as effective as painkillers, according to a new scientific survey.
Researchers at the University of Portsmouth have found that people
felt about 40 per cent less pain, and were able to stand pain for about
45 per cent longer, when they used reflexology as a method of pain
Dr Carol Samuel, who is a trained reflexologist and who
carried out the experimental procedures as part of her PhD studies, said
it was the first time this therapy had been scientifically tested as a
treatment for acute pain. She said the results suggested that
reflexology could be used to complement conventional drug therapy in the
treatment of conditions associated with pain such as osteoarthritis,
backache and cancers.
Participants attended two sessions, in which they were asked to submerge their hand in ice water. In
one of the sessions they were given reflexology before they submerged
their hand, and in the other session they believed they were receiving
pain relief from a Tens machine, which was not actually switched on.
researchers found that when the participants received reflexology prior
to the session they were able to keep their hand in the ice water for
longer before they felt pain, and that they could also tolerate the pain
for a longer period of time.
Dr Samuel said: "As we predicted, reflexology decreased pain sensations. It
is likely that reflexology works in a similar manner to acupuncture by
causing the brain to release chemicals that lessen pain signals."
Source - BBC