Therapeutic treatments – St Columba’s Hospice Palliative Care, Edinburgh


Touch is a basic form of communication and can convey feelings of comfort, calm and support. Massage is an ancient art and is a means of communication through touch, which involves a variety of different techniques and moves designed to promote stress relief and relaxation. The pressure and movements are varied to suit individual needs, to an agreed part of the body.


The history of reflexology dates back to ancient times. The technique is natural and can be applied to both hands and feet. However, it is most commonly applied to the feet.

The soles of the feet and palms of the hands are divided into sections that mirror the body. Massaging the feet or hands promotes the process of balancing the body. Reflexology can be especially effective in relieving tension, stress and anxiety.


Although aromatherapy has only recently become popular, the use of aromatic plants for medicinal purposes dates back thousands of years. Aromatherapy is now defined as the use of essential oils in holistic treatments to improve physical and emotional wellbeing. Each oil has their own individual therapeutic properties with some oils providing analgesic, anti-inflammatory, sedative and uplifting effects. This gentle massage is ideal for helping to relieve stress, anxiety. tension and insomnia throughout the use of traditional aromatherapy massage.


Reiki pronounced (Ray-key) is an ancient form of Japanese hands on therapy and helps to release blocked energy in the body, helping you to activate your body’s natural ability to rebalance itself. Reiki is a gentle therapy which involves sitting or lying, fully clothed, while the therapist lightly places her hands over various energy points in the body. You may experience a sensation of heat, coldness, or see different colours. Some people will have little or no sensation but the result is just the same. Reiki is a completely safe, non-invasive holistic way to promote a feeling of deep relaxation and well being and does not conflict with any religious or belief system.