Reflexology vs acupuncture

Many people have heard of acupuncture. But, they’re still asking what’s the difference between reflexology vs acupuncture?

Both modalities have their origins in traditional Chinese medicine and although both are similar in the sense they alternative therapies, or as we like to refer to them, complementary therapies. Both modalities balance your entire body (holistic) through releasing energy flow, there are some intrinsic differences between reflexology vs acupuncture.

Acupuncture uses needles to puncture the surface of the skin
Acupuncture uses needles
The key difference for me is that acupuncture uses needles to pierce, or puncture, the skin.
Karen the MAR reflexologist specialising in Fertility at Essential Feeling Gidea park, Romford giving reflexology on foot
Reflexology uses pressure points to relax and balance at once

Your reflexologist will use a combination of differing pressures (acupressure) on the surface of your skin using a kind of massage which is done within ‘reflex zones’ specifically on ‘reflex points’. Each of these relate to other parts of the body which are not usually reached with a normal massage.

There are no needles involved in reflexology, it is totally non-invasive and very often your practitioner only use a gentle pressure combined with healing energy to improve your health. It also has a wonderfully relaxing effect.

Many clients who have tried acupuncture and then moved to reflexology because they didn’t like it, say that the benefits of reflexology is that is so much more relaxing.

Similarities between reflexology and acupuncture.

Both treatments work with the sympathetic nervous system to calm it down, so in theory clients should fall asleep just as they do in reflexology. However, there is something about having needles sticking out of them during the process that makes them tense and hinders their ability to relax.

Reflexology is like time out.

Thankfully, this doesn’t happen with reflexology which is like a wellness time out, whereas when they’ve had a therapy involving needles, clients describe it as being more like a doctor’s appointment.

While reflexology uses reflexes (pressure points) in the hands and feet the location of which largely resemble the shape of the human body, acupuncture has a more haphazard approach in that the meridians channel all over your body.

So, while reflexology works on the entire body using many pressure points within one area, mainly the feet (although there is foot and hand reflexology) acupuncture uses meridians spread throughout your torso and from foot up to the top of your head.

Ready to book a reflexology session to relax, balance and unwind?

Hopefully that has explained a little of what you were interested in finding out about acupuncture and reflexology. Just one more thing to note, reflexology is safe throughout pregnancy as long as you are attending sessions at a clinic with a trained pregnancy reflexologist as we are at Essential Feeling. If you’d like to ask specific questions, please email us at admin@essentialfeeling.co.uk. Or you can book online now.

Reflexology Q&A — Certified Reflexologist near me

Karen, your MAR reflexologist at Essential Feeling, Romford answers your reflexology based questions so you can find a Certified Reflexologist near me.

If you’re looking for a Certified Reflexologist near me but you’re not sure where to start, then here are a list of the common questions answered. That way you can be sure that when you book with Karen MAR at Essential Feeling Gidea Park, Romford, you’re making the right choice.

1. What qualification in reflexology do you hold, and when did you qualify?

I qualified with the ABC awards which is recognised by the AOR (Association of Reflexology) the professional reflexology association as a quality training. I have a Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology and Anatomy and Physiology. 

Karen reflexology qualification certificate. Certified Reflexologist near me

On top of this, Karen has also continued her professional development and holds many other training certificates in e.g. fertility reflexology, pregnancy reflexology, spinal reflexology, nerve reflexology and cancer care. She is also a certified nutritionist and counsellor.

2. Do you belong to any professional associations?

As noted above, Karen is a member of the AOR. Membership of a reputable professional association such as the Association of Reflexologists is a strong indicator of a continuing commitment to high professional standards. Don’t be afraid to check this association out – they are reputable and have a Code of Practice and Ethics that all members ascribe to, a robust complaints procedure, will require all practitioners to be fully insured and will require all practitioners to continue their learning and professional development throughout their career.

MAR status means Karen has passed a rigorous quality control process before they can even enter membership, and they are required to continue their learning about reflexology throughout their career.

3. Where do you give treatments?

Essential Feeling have treatment rooms at their home address. They are separate to the house in an annex so you won’t have to endure a TV blasting or dogs barking during your session.

We have free off street parking on the drive in allocated parking spaces right outside the entrance to the treatment rooms. 

4. How much do you charge for treatments?

All of our sessions at Essential Feeling are the same price. It’s £60 per hour and the minimum time is one hour. We won’t compromise on this, we want to do a great job for you, otherwise it’s our reputation at stake and cutting down the time affects the quality of your outcome.

We work on an appointment basis, from 7am in the morning to 10pm at night, 7 days.

5. How long should I allow for an appointment?

Your slot is one hour and please do check out our policy on this, here.

6. What do I need to bring with me to my appointment?

Nothing, just yourself. It’s easier if you are wearing something that is easy to remove on your feet, but it’s no issue if not. The main thing is to make sure that you return the online consultation form well in advance of your session so that your therapist has the time to give it good consideration before you come along.

7. How firm or gentle are your techniques?

If you have a preference then let us know. It’s no issue to adapt. The pressure we would naturally use will be different depending on why you are coming. If we need to stimulate something, then we’ll use a more firm pressure than if we’re working with you on cancer care.

8. What medium do you use on the feet?

Karen uses a specialist reflexology wax by choice.  Please let her know in advance of your session if you have any allergies.

If you’d like to go ahead and book with Karen, a Certified Reflexologist near me in Gidea Park, Romford, you can drop her a text on 07757 946023 or if you’d like more information on the types of reflexology she offers, then more information is here.

Reflexology — how it works

How reflexology works
How reflexology works

What is Reflexology?

Reflexology is a non-invasive complementary health therapy that can be effective in promoting deep relaxation and wellbeing; by reducing stress in people’s lives can be key in optimising good health and building resilience. It is a touch therapy that is based on the theory that different points on the feet, lower leg, hands, face or ears correspond with different areas of the body and reflexologists work these points and areas. At Essential Feeling, Karen specialises in foot reflexology, but also sometimes works on hands instead of or as well as your feet. This is because some conditions are better treated by using different methods.

However reflexology is viewed, there can be no doubt that what it does provide is a period of time for relaxation where the client has one to one attention and supportive touch in an empathetic listening environment. Reflexology can be used safely alongside standard healthcare to promote better health for their clients.

To get a better idea what reflexology looks like, feel free to watch our video.

What’s the main theory behind reflexology?Reflexology how it works

The theory of reflexology is that all the systems and organs of the whole body are mirrored or reflected in smaller peripheral areas, for example the feet, hands, ears and face. These can be seen in relation to the feet by following the link to our interactive reflexology map (right).

Back in the 1920’s investigative studies regarding this concept allowed the first Western reflexology foot map to be produced. Since that time the other anatomical areas have been mapped allowing this model to be applied to the hands, ears and face.

The reflexologist simply works those reflected areas with their sensitive fingers, aiming to bring those areas back to balance and therefore aiding the body to work as well as it can. Reflexology very much works on an individual basis, the reflexologist provides professional facilitation of your body’s own potential for well-being.

While there are few available scientific studies specifically into how reflexology works, there are scientific studies that support the potential positive effects that can be achieved by touch. Essentially, according to the advertising standards council, as a reflexologist, we can only claim the directly proven effects of reflexology. These being listed in the image below.

Benefits reflexology

So how can you claim reflexology helps with all the other health issues?

Because firstly, we’ve worked with clients who we know this has helped, so that’s our personal experience. But, here’s the underlying issues that the ASA can’t support for legal reasons.

When our body undergoes changes, then the knock on effects are massive.

Take the example above of ‘aids sleep.’ This has huge knock on benefits because our body uses the downtime when we’re napping to fix itself. So, all of the stresses and strains of the day that cause a negative imbalance on our system are cleansed while our body has extra energy from not having to move us around.

This benefit is massive. If we’re starting the next day with a ‘fitter’ body then the negative effects of everything else that we load onto our system are so much less impactful.

A brief history of Western reflexology

Whilst the art of reflexology dates back to Ancient Egypt, India and China, this therapy was not introduced to the West until Dr William Fitzgerald developed ‘Zone therapy’ in the early 1900s. He believed that reflex areas on the feet and hands were linked to other areas and organs of the body within the same zone.

In the 1930’s, Eunice Ingham further developed this zone therapy into what is known as reflexology. Her opinion was that congestion or tension in any part of the foot is mirrored in the corresponding part of the body.

 

Is reflexology suitable for me?

Reflexology is a therapy which can be received by anyone at any age, from newborn babies to those receiving end of life care, and everyone in between. However, there may occasionally be times when it is not suitable to provide a treatment. If you’re in any doubt, give Karen a call or text on 07757 946023 and ask! Please note: reflexology should not be used as an alternative to seeking medical advice.

Will reflexology help me?

Well trained reflexologists do not claim to cure, diagnose or prescribe. Reflexology is a very individual treatment which is tailored to you as a whole person, taking into account both physical and non-physical factors that might be affecting your wellbeing. Some people find it works for them – some don’t. The best way to find out is to try it!

The theory is that reflexology helps the body to restore its balance naturally. Usually, after a treatment your tension may be reduced and you might feel relaxed. You might also notice yourself sleeping better and find your mood and sense of wellbeing improving. You may also find that other aspects improve too; however, this happens on an individual basis.

There have been some positive research projects carried out with reflexology; however, as yet, there is not a large enough body of evidence for us to make clinical claims of effectiveness.

With ever increasing levels of stress in everyday life, it is important for people to take more responsibility for their own healthcare needs. Reflexology may be one of the ways to mitigate the stresses of modern life.

 

What happens when I go for a treatment?

A full medical history will be requested on your first treatment, and you will be asked to sign a consent form for treatment. This information will be kept confidential. Reflexology is a very easy therapy to receive; depending on the type of reflexology, the most clothing that will have to be removed for a treatment to take place will be your socks and shoes.

The therapist will then use their hands to apply pressure to the feet, lower leg, hands, ears or face, depending on the type of reflexology chosen. You may feel areas of transient discomfort during the treatment, but generally the experience should be relaxing.

The therapist may recommend a course of treatments.

 

How will I feel after a reflexology treatment?

It is useful to give feedback to the reflexologist as this may show the response of your body to treatment. This in turn might help the reflexologist to tailor a treatment plan specific to your needs. After one or two treatments your body may respond in a very noticeable way. Most people note a sense of well-being and relaxation; however, sometimes people report feeling lethargic, nauseous or tearful, but this is usually transitory and reflexologists believe that it is part of the healing process.

We hope that helps to answer the questions about reflexology and how it works. If you’re interested in booking a session, we’re in Gidea Pak, Romford, Essex. You can text Karen MAR on 07757 946023 or book online.

Reflexology aids fertility — reflexology for fertility near me

Looking for reflexology for fertility near me but need some help deciding? Check out this case study

After three years of trying for a second child, Kath and Murray Chapman had almost given up hope.

Doctors had told them Mrs Chapman had a hormone problem which meant fertility treatment would be a waste of time.

But the 40- year-old mother remembered she had read somewhere that reflexology could help with infertility.

With nothing to lose, she had three months of foot massage and, at the end of her course, was delighted to hear that her hormone levels had returned to normal.

She soon became pregnant and gave birth to second son Fraser five months ago. While doctors insist there is nothing to prove the alternative therapy was responsible, she is sure it worked.

Mrs Chapman, who also has a four-year-old son called Jake, said: ‘I am convinced I wouldn’t have become pregnant without the reflexologist’s help. I was absolutely shocked, but obviously delighted, to find I was pregnant after being told we couldn’t have a second child. It’s a dream come true.’

Mrs Chapman, from Deepcar, Sheffield, said she was ‘devastated’ to be told she would never conceive again.

‘I was told that there was no point in attempting IVF treatment because it would be a waste so I would have to resign myself to the fact that we couldn’t have another baby,’ she added. A hormone test – which indicates if a woman is entering the menopause – showed levels were too high, suggesting her ovaries had stopped producing enough oestrogen, which controls the reproductive cycle.

To become pregnant, a woman needs a hormone rating of ten or below but Mrs Chapman’s was above 25. Following reflexology, however, it dropped to below eight.

‘ I told the doctors about the reflexology but they dismissed it and just said it was possible that hormone levels can drop when you become more relaxed and less anxious.

‘The effect of the reflexology was amazing. It seemed to relax me so much. I became pregnant quite quickly and everything went smoothly. The doctors never admitted that the reflexology had anything to do with it but I have no doubt at all.’

Mr Chapman, who runs a catering recruitment business with his wife, said: ‘We’re just delighted now the family is complete.’ Reflexologist Sue Calvert said: ‘The technique works on pressure points on the feet which correspond to different parts of the body. Massaging these areas helps to restore balance to the body.’

There is little accepted medical evidence to back up Reflexologists’ claims. One trial in Denmark examined 108 women with an average age of 30 who had been trying to conceive for up to seven years. Many dropped out of the trial, but 19 of the remaining 61 conceived within six months of completing the treatment.

Polly Hall, of the Association of Reflexologists, said last night: ‘ Doctors would say that reflexology had nothing to do with this.

‘We don’t make any claims to cure any conditions but we have anecdotal evidence that reflexology can help with infertility problems and bring the body back into balance.’

Contact us now to book your reflexology for fertility near me

by CHRIS BROOKE, Daily Mail