Many of us have experienced reflexology and would probably say that it differs from therapist to therapist – be it each foot worked separately, working between the two, or perhaps some Vertical Reflex Therapy is added to the treatment? I know my way of practising reflexology has changed over the years, but it demonstrates how versatile reflexology is as a therapy and how it can be adapted to each individual and their presenting conditions.
A new addition to my reflexology toolkit is Reflexology Lymph Drainage (RLD).
So, what is this form of reflexology and how does it work?
RLD is a specific technique of working the feet or hands which focuses on stimulating the lymphatic reflexes, either as a stand-alone treatment or incorporated within a conventional reflexology treatment. Its aim is to stimulate the function of the lymphatic system and drain excess lymph.
Originally researched and developed by Sally Kay BSc (Hons) whilst working in Cancer Care, RLD initially focused on supporting those with lymphoedema post treatment for breast cancer. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK, with 1:8 women and 1:870 men developing breast cancer at some point in their life.
Post conventional treatment, many experience emotional and psychological difficulties as they learn to live with an altered body image (such as a swollen limb) and quality of life can decrease as the person comes to terms with life post-treatment. Breast cancer survival rates have increased over the years too, with approximately 2:3 women surviving the disease beyond 20 years. As a statistic, it is encouraging to hear survival rates increasing, however quality of life plays such an important part too. And that’s where RLD came into play!
Many receiving the treatment at the research stage commented that they felt ‘normal again’; they had ‘got [their] arm back’; and that they ‘felt good about [themselves] and it helped [their] confidence’ with clothes feeling looser. What wonderful feedback from a therapy in its early stages of research.
The lymphatic system is such a vital part of the immune system, with it playing an important role in fighting bacteria and other infections and, as the years have passed, it has been indicated that RLD may also be beneficial for many other conditions, for example:
Aches and pains
Therefore, should you be feeling under par, in pain, or struggling to deal with a medical condition which you feel Reflexology Lymph Drainage or reflexology may help, book an appointment with Lorraine, or contact her at The Healing Tree on 07790 385809