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A Relaxing Touch Aids Healing

Relax. It's good for your health. Seriously, it is. Greenwich Hospital 's surgical, labor and delivery and oncology patients are among those who receive a healing boost through Healing Touch , a form of energy therapy.

"Healing Touch is a holistic approach to healing," says Cos Cob resident Roberta Brown Brugo, a licensed massage therapist and registered nurse who has been working at Greenwich Hospital for six years. She is a Healing Touch certified practitioner who oversees the program's practice for hospital volunteers.

The gentle and noninvasive therapy enhances healing, says Roberta. And in addition to inducing deep calm and relaxation, it helps reduce pain, decrease anxiety, promote sleep and improve overall well being.

Roberta begins a session by asking "permission to touch." She then grounds and centers herself, and uses her hands to "assess the energy centers ( chakras ) and the energy field ( aura )." She will then decide what specific treatments she will perform. She might use "mind clearing," which, she says, helps patients to relax.

"This soothing, calming approach complements patients' traditional medical care," says Roberta. She says when the body is relaxed its "innate wisdom helps heal itself by restoring balance in its energy system."

Roberta details some of the extraordinary ways Healing Touch affects her patients, who run the gamut from pediatric to geriatric. "They experience reduced pain and anxiety, as well as less tension and stress. It also helps accelerate wound healing, promotes restful sleep and improves a sense of well being." Additionally, she says, Healing Touch decreases some of the side effects (nausea, vomiting, fatigue) of chemotherapy and radiation. She says she finds when "patients experience how good they can feel when they relax, they want to take better care of themselves."

More than isolating relaxation for the specific purpose of healing, Roberta states that practices such as Healing Touch serve a greater need. "It is important to educate the community about the fact that we are more than our physical, dense bodies," she says. "Our thoughts and emotions play a major role in our health and there are treatments available to assist patients in learning how to relax, promote wellness and assist in preventing disease."

What techniques do you use to relax? Let me know here .

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