Therapeutic Touch was developed in 1972 by Dolores Krieger, professor of Nursing at New York University and her mentor Dora Kunz. Therapeutic Touch is a type of energy work, an interpretation of several ancient healing practices. It is a consciously directed process of energy exchange during which the practitioner uses the hands as a focus for facilitating healing.
One of the premises of Therapeutic Touch is that we are all made of energy and energy extends beyond one’s skin, like heat radiates from a fire. If our energy is running smoothly,we will feel better mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally.
What Can Therapeutic Touch Do?
- Relaxation – Rapid relaxation response in 2-4 minutes.
- Pain Reduction – Often, significant reduction or eradication of pain.
- Accelerated Healing Process – Relaxation and reduction of pain often have positive effects on the immunological system and the healing process is accelerated i.e.fractured bones-callous formation happens in 2.5 weeks instead of 6 weeks.
- Alleviation of Psychosomatic Illness – 70% of illnesses are psychosomatic in origin. Therapeutic Touch works on the autonomic nervous system and helps reduce stress.
Who can benefit from Therapeutic Touch?
*Infants *Children *Youth *Adults *Expectant mothers *Plants *Pets and other animals *Individuals with mental, behavioral, or chronic or serious illness *Those dealing with stress or loss *Those with minor ailments *Those who desire relief from symptoms of chronic or serious illnesses *Those seeking health maintenance/balance
Length of Treatment?
The average treatment takes 20 minutes. However, other factors such as size of the individual and the individual’s overall state of health need to be considered.
How Can I help?
During the treatment, relax and let your mind be quiet. After the treatment be quiet for 10-20 minutes to allow your rebalanced energy patterns to take hold.
The healer, or Therapeutic Touch Practitioner, acts as a human support system, to guide the repatterining of the healee’s weakened and disrupted energy flow. This support is oriented toward stimulating the healee’s own immunological system, for it is the healed who heals her or himself.
Therapeutic Touch is one of the most highly researched complementary therapies. Sources for 3 research studies are given below.
- Heidt,P. (1981) Effects of Therapeutic Touch on the anxiety level of hospitalized patients. Nursing research,30(1) 32-37
- Krieger, D. (1997). Living the Therapeutic Touch. New York:Dodd.Mead.
- Meehan,T.C.(1993). Therapeutic Touch and postoperative pain: A Rogerian research study. Nursing Science Quarterly,6(2).69-78