Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Reflexology To Stop Smoking

Reflexology to Quit Smoking

You've tried countless times to kick the smoking habit, but none of your attempts have been successful. You know that smoking is not only bad for your health, but it's also a very real threat to the well-being of those around you. Practitioners and advocates of reflexology claim that this form of therapy can help you break your nicotine addiction once and for all.

What Is Reflexology?

Reflexology, according to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, is a form of massage therapy in which pressure is applied to specific points on your feet, hands or ears to promote healing and relaxation elsewhere in your body. Archaeologists have uncovered strong evidence that variations on this form of medical practice have been in use for thousands of years. Many historians credit the ancient Chinese with developing this form of therapy roughly 5,000 years ago, but it was also widely used by early Egyptian and Japanese civilizations.

Also known as zone therapy, the practice of reflexology is based on the belief that specific points on your feet and hands are linked to various organs and body systems. Reflexologists believe that they can help remedy a wide range of ailments by applying varying degrees of pressure to the points on your feet and/or hands that correspond to affected body systems or organs.

Kicking the Habit

In their book, Feet First: A Guide to Foot Reflexology, Laura Norman and Thomas Dale Cowan contend that reflexology can significantly reduce the irritability and anxiety that accompany nicotine withdrawal and often cause quitting smokers to light up once again. They recommend sessions of 15 to 20 minutes twice weekly or whenever the urge to smoke becomes hard to resist. Norman and Cowan suggest that each session begin with stimulation of the points on the foot linked to the solar plexus, which should help you relax. Once you're relaxed, they recommend stimulation of the reflex areas for the lungs, diaphragm and heart, and the adrenal, pineal, pituitary and thyroid glands.

Michelle R. Kluck, author of Hands on Feet: The New System That Makes Reflexology a Snap!, also believes that reflexology can help smokers break the habit. She suggests that reflexology in support of smoking-cessation programs should concentrate on stimulating the areas of each foot that relate to the function and health of the brain, lungs and solar plexus. Stimulating the areas that are reflexive to the brain and solar plexus helps ease the craving for nicotine, according to Kluck, while stimulation of the area that links to the lungs improves the quality of breathing and discourages the patient from contaminating his lungs with all the contaminants that are part of the smoking experience.

If you'd like to experiment with reflexology on your own or with the assistance of a friend or family member, you can find free, interactive reflexology maps of the feet and hands at the website of Dorling Kindersley Books, a U.K. publisher (see Resources).

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