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Holistic therapies and their benefits for palliative care patients

Palliative care is a specialised form of care focused on providing comfort and support to those living with an incurable illness. It aims to improve the quality of life for both the patient and their family by addressing physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs. An important part of palliative care involves holistic therapies such as reflexology, Reiki, and gentle massage. In this article, we'll look at how these therapies can provide numerous benefits to patients in palliative care.





Pain Relief

One of the main goals of palliative care is to manage physical pain. Holistic therapies can help reduce pain levels by increasing relaxation and decreasing stress levels. For example, gentle massage has been known to increase blood circulation throughout the body, helping to reduce soreness and tension in muscles and joints. Reflexology can also be used to stimulate various points in the feet that correspond with different parts of the body; this helps promote relaxation which in turn can relieve pain throughout the body.


Improved Mood

Living with an incurable illness can often lead to depression or anxiety; therefore it's important for patients in palliative care to find ways to cope with their emotions. Holistic therapies such as Reiki or meditation have been known to help improve moods by restoring balance between mind and body. These therapies allow patients to take time out from day-to-day worries and focus on being present in the moment; this helps create a sense of peace and acceptance which has been shown to improve overall wellbeing.


Increased Feeling of being cared For

In addition to providing numerous physical benefits, holistic therapies like reflexology or gentle massage can also provide psychological benefits by increasing feelings of being cared for. This is especially important for those living with an incurable illness who may feel isolated or alone due to their condition. By taking time out for themselves through a holistic therapy session, patients are able to reconnect with themselves (and potentially their loved ones) on a deeper level which leads them feeling more supported overall.


Holistic therapies offer numerous benefits for those living with an incurable illness who are receiving palliative care services. These therapies not only help manage physical symptoms such as pain relief but they also offer psychological benefits such as improved moods and increased feelings of being cared for. Examples of these therapeutic treatments include reflexology, Reiki, gentle massage and meditation; all of which should be considered when designing individualized palliative care plans for patients in need.

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