Energy Healing is a part of the Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) field. Energy Healing disciplines fall under two categories: veritable (measureable) energy fields and putative (currently un-measurable) energy fields.
Therapies that use veritable energies use mechanical vibrations such as sound and electromagnetic waves, including visible light and magnetism. Methods include specific, measurable wavelengths and frequencies for patient treatment.
Therapies that use putative energies utilize the belief that human beings contain an aura of energy known as a biofield (in western medicine), which can be manipulated to restore health. Eastern medicine recognizes this energy by various names: Qi, Ki, Doshas, Prana, Mana, and more. These fields have not been measured by reproducible methods.
There are several popular methods to practice energy healing. Read below to understand what the best options are for you:
Magnetic Field Therapy
The FDA has approved Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) treatments for bone fusion, wound healing, and to reduce swelling and joint pain. PEMF treatment uses a pulsed magnetic field to create currents in the cell tissue, which signals the cells to rebalance and promote healing.
Another non-experimental FDA approved treatment is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), which is prescribed for severe depression. TMS treatment is often repetitive (rTMS), requiring more than one session.
Magnets are generally safe for public use, but can disrupt pacemakers, defibrillators, insulin pumps, and pregnant women and their unborn child. Talk to your doctor about Magnetic Field Therapy options for your health.
Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese technique often used medicinally. Thin needles are used to stimulate various points across the body using pressure or miniscule adjustment. Each point is believed to correspond with a specific condition, with the location of the needle intending to restore a balance of energy and health.
This method of healing is practiced in an array of US hospitals and private practices, as well as with the Department of Defense in the treatment of soldiers.
In addition to traditional acupuncture, an acupuncturist may use several techniques to promote healing along the acupressure points including:
- Mugwort or other traditional healing herbs
- Electrodes (Electro-Acupuncture)
- Auricular Acupuncture (the placement of needles in the ear)
- Cupping (using suction to promote blood flow)
- Guasha (rubbing a tool on the body to promote blood flow and relaxation)
- Acupressure (non-invasive)
Preliminary findings indicate a beneficial effect of Acupuncture in relieving vomiting caused by chemotherapy, as well as chronic pain relief for headaches, lower back pain, and osteoarthritis. Currently more studies are needed to scientifically support additional benefits of acupuncture.
Talk to your doctor about licensed acupuncture practices available to you.
Reiki healing is performed by a trained practitioner who hovers his or her hands over the patient’s body, or places them lightly on the skin, to redistribute energy. The belief is that through the flow or redistribution of energy through several key points called chakras, the body’s natural healing ability will be triggered.
This method is used to decrease pain, ease muscle tension, speed natural healing, and improve sleep. Hospital studies have shown the use of Reiki increases happiness, relaxation, and a feeling of calm. Discomfort from chemotherapy and other treatments have also been seen to be alleviated using this technique.
Tai Chi and Qi Gong
Tai Chi and Qi Gong are ancient Chinese movement therapies. Through fast or slow deliberate movements, it is thought one can redistribute energy and unblock energy pathways in the body called meridians. Regular movements from these schools of thought are recommended for long-term improvement in health.
Tai Chi uses fast or slow movements to redistribute energy according to the blocked meridian causing poor health. This improves the body’s overall energy (chi) and improves health.
Qi Gong involves coordinated movements such as raising or lowering the arms and feet, moving the head from side to side, and rubbing the ears, feet, and hands.
Although generally safe, you should talk to your doctor before pursuing Tai Chi or Qi Gong due to its classification as a martial art.
What is Energy Healing good for?
Energy Healing techniques, such as those listed above, may help treat many different symptoms, including:
- Joint Pain
- Chronic Pain (such as migraines and osteoarthritis)
- Trouble Sleeping
- Muscle Tension
- Wound Healing
Always talk to your doctor when considering an alternative treatment option to discuss how it can affect your current health and medical needs.