Reflexology is yet another tool health practioners can use in drug and alcohol addiction treatment. It is part of every massage system in the world, is at least 6,000 years old and is one of the first healing modalities in existence, even predating acupuncture and chiropractic. The advantage to reflexology is its utility as both a diagnostic technique and treatment modality. Each organ in the body has a reflex point in the hands, ears, and feet. When using a visual map of these areas we find they mirror the internal organs located in the torso and head areas.
By pressing, rubbing, kneading, and pinching the reflex points, the corresponding organs are energetically healed; on a physical level, the immune system is stimulated and the body uses its own intelligence to send blood, hormones, oxygen, and other vital substances to these areas. Reflexology is very useful in the field of addiction, as it can first be used to relax the patient/client while the liver, colon, heart, and other vital organs are being healed.
How a practitioner determines which organs must be stimulated is dependent on the type of pathology that is sensed by smell, touch, and sight. It is common, for instance, for someone to rub a painful area on their hand, and when they stop to think about the source of the injury, there is no recollection of physical injury. This means there is an issue with the organ that corresponds to that particular zone. Markings may also appear on the area such as bruising, discoloration, and swelling.
Using the techniques above, an individual can either heal themselves or find a skilled reflexologist to assist them in the healing process.
Ann Gilanders. The Joy of Reflexology: Healing Techniques for the Hands and Feet to Reduce Stress and Reclaim Life. Gaia Books Limited: London, 1995.
Inge Dougans. The New Reflexology: A Unique Blend of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western Reflexology Practice for Better Health and Healing. Marlowe & Company: New York, 2006.