Hi, I’m Sophie and I’m a reflexologist.
I first had the pleasure of meeting these wonderful and courageous ladies a little over two years ago, while their loved ones were at the RoyalHospital for Neuro-Disability in Putney. This was my first experience of working with patients with brain injury and it has been a profoundly humbling and moving experience. It has certainly made me realise what a thin thread our lives hang on!
So....here is a little information about what this complementary therapy is all about, what it can do and what it has done for Anne’s son Peter and Sue’s husband Charles.
What is reflexology..........
Reflexology is a deeply relaxing treatment, which helps to restore a balance between mind and body, reducing tension thus promoting a feeling of wellbeing. It works on the basis that all the organs and bodily systems are mirrored on reflex points on the feet/hands. A treatment, which is a form of pressure massage, stimulates the reflex points which rebalances them, encouraging the body to tap into its own self-healing ability and helping to guide it to optimum health.
As a result, blood circulation to the nerves and organs is increased, the immune system is boosted and the body becomes more efficient at eliminating toxins.
How can it help if you have sustained brain damage?
For patients with little or no mobility, it is vital to ensure that three key systems – circulatory, eliminatory and immune – are all stimulated to encourage them to work as effectively as they can. Whilst the whole body is treated at every session, I have always paid particular attention to these areas as patients are always at greater risk of respiratory or urinary infections.
Peter and Charles have always responded well to treatments and are always very relaxed by the end of a session.
Gradually as the weeks and months have passed, improvements have appeared. Mucus secretions started to loosen, coughing and swallow reflexes became easier, and they have been better able to resist and fight off infection and displayed improved awareness within the restrictions of their injuries.
Reflexology works on many levels and being a holistic therapy, it deals with the mental/emotional side of things as much as the physical body. Prolonged illness, injury or emotional upset will in time start to alter the body’s ability to function effectively. In simple terms, long term pain and injury can cause depression, an unhappy state of mind can start to show itself in physical ailments.
This is where reflexology works on a subtle level. The body and mind have a fantastic ability to heal and sometimes a little nudge is all that is needed to help it to remember what it knows and needs to do to function as well as it can.
If the least that treatments do is to maintain as good a level of health as it possible, then that is, in my opinion, a great result.
For the rest, there is so much that we have yet to learn and understand. Making sure that these wonderful people are given the best opportunity to start on their often very long roads to recovery is what we owe them.
I have seen the changes in both Peter and Charles. They certainly know who I am and it has been a joy to see the great strides they have both made in the past two years and to be involved, along with many others, in helping them and their families on the road to recovery.
If reading this has made you think that reflexology could help someone you know or you would like further information, please feel free to call me.
Sophie Esdaile MAR
Tel: 07785 794 445