How Reflexology and Lymphatic Drainage Help to Ease Chemotherapy Symptoms
A bit by accident I discovered how amazing reflexology is for helping ease symptoms in the days following chemotherapy treatment.
Leading up to Mother’s Day last year, I offered a gift voucher special. A 90 minute session – 30 minute reflexology treatment and 1 hour massage for $100.
Yes, they sold like hotcakes!
One of my regular clients gifted herself one and just happened to be going through chemotherapy treatment at the time.
Her appointment was about 3 days after her treatment and the nausea was horrendous! She even said she didn’t know how she managed to drive herself here.
During the reflexology treatment she commented that her nausea had started to ease and she felt less bloated. I noticed the colour in her face had improved dramatically and she looked far more at ease in general.
At the end of the massage, she looked like a different person to the one who walked in. I felt so happy for her. We were chatting and she said she couldn’t believe how much better she felt and she booked another 90 minute appointment for after her next chemotherapy session.
These treatments became part of her routine. She told me they really helped get her through each round of chemo. I was then able to pass this information on to family and friends who I knew had loved ones going through the same treatment.
I’ve been able to help so many clients in this way now.
A patient going through a back reflexology treatment.
Manual lymphatic drainage basically does what the body can’t do on its own. When lymph nodes are removed the body can no longer drain the fluid that flows through the associated limb or body area. This results in oedema, or fluid build-up. The excess fluid puts pressure on nerves, even causing nerve impingement and causes the skin to become tight. It can become quite painful.
For those clients who have had lymph nodes removed, manual lymphatic drainage is often need to help the body process excess fluid. Often in the arm when nodes have been removed from the axillary (under the armpit) area or breast. It can also be the leg when nodes have been removed from the groin or even in the abdominal area.
The body has an amazing ability to redirect the fluid to other lymph nodes after a while. But not every body’s body will adapt in this way. So manual lymphatic drainage may be required for a short period of time after surgery or it may become part of a regular self-care routine.
A lymphatic drainage treatment is an extremely gentle process. With the excess fluid being removed almost as soon as the treatment starts.
These two treatments can be incorporated together or as stand alone treatments. Every individual has different requirements and preferences. They can also both be incorporated with some remedial massage.
Both treatments have an impact on the immune system too which is so important during chemotherapy treatment. It gives the patient a good hit of feel good endorphins and helps to calm and soothe their nervous system.
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