Reiki Frequently Asked Questions
What is Reiki?
Reiki is a Japanese system of natural healing and development of both body and mind that anyone can benefit from. Its original translation is 'soul energy'. We live in a world of energy; eastern systems of medicine have always recognised and worked with the energy that flows through all life with an understanding that a balanced flow of energy in life is the foundation of health and well-being, Reiki is understood to promote the body's natural cleansing processes and self-healing capacity, supporting the body's natural healing mechanisms and stimulating clearance of energetic disruption, tension and stress in the body. Reiki is believed to work on many levels of a person's being. Reiki is non-invasive and non-diagnostic. As a natural form of healing, Reiki can support other forms of treatment. Reiki does not address any disease or condition symptom directly, but from a broader, deeper holistic way. Reiki is increasingly being used in more mainstream settings alongside conventional medicine. For more understanding of what Reiki is, I have written a more comprehensive answer to this very question: What is Reiki?
Is Reiki safe?
Yes, Reiki is completely safe and is used with people of all ages and health challenges and there are no contraindications to a Reiki treatment. By its very nature it is a healing energy. Occasionally their might be special factors that might need extra consideration, but Reiki is still safe for all.
What are the benefits of Reiki? How could Reiki help me?
Reiki is a healing process that anyone can benefit from in the normal course of their life. Reiki may encourage a deep sense of relaxation, calmness, as well as emotional and spiritual wellbeing. Many report reduced stress, improved sleep and a sense of feeling more energised after Reiki treatments. Regular Reiki treatments may also promote a calmer response to life's challenges. Many experience a greater sense of inner peace and clarity in thought. Clearing disruptions within someone we find can also bring one's inner voice or intuition more to the surface, helping with any number of things, from supporting a behavioural change to gaining clarity in life direction. Many people find Reiki during times of illness, bereavement, or personal challenge. In such great times of stress Reiki can be a great comfort, helping to encouraging a sense of emotional well-being, promoting deep relaxation in addition to facilitating the effective function of the body's natural healing mechanisms. With regular Reiki treatments people can also benefit from a strong emotional healing component, experiencing a release of negative emotional baggage which can have a profoundly positive effect for some people in helping them move forward in their life. For actual real-world accounts from some of my clients who have worked with me see my reviews page.
Is Reiki suitable for children?
Yes, Reiki is safe for children. We find that children absorb Reiki energy quickly. In addition their relative size means that they commonly require slightly shorter treatments (dependent on the severity of the challenges we are dealing with). Children are commonly less mentally conditioned than adults, so are also more accepting of receiving energy as a natural thing. Reiki can have multiple applications in helping children in todays modern world, be that helping them cope with the increasing pressures of academic exams, processing and healing from a bereavement, or any number of life experiences. (NB: parental consent is required to conduct a Reiki treatment on any child or young person under the age of 18 years). In my experience of helping children with Reiki, we have many times found that with the logistics of modern living and children's schedules, we increasingly take the strategy of empowering a parent to perform Reiki treatments on their own child. By training a parent in Reiki, either in support of any professional treatments or on its own, this approach maximises the volume of Reiki a child can consistently receive, reduces disruption to the childs evening routine with the added benefit of a parent benefiting from the process directly. This all magnifies the treatment outcomes for the child. For information on Reiki training courses for parents have a look at my Reiki courses page.
Can I have Reiki while on medications?
Yes, you can receive Reiki treatments whilst taking prescribed drugs. In line with good medical practice where prescribed drug regimes are reviewed on a regular basis, consult with the prescriber as to your personal prescribed drug regime, any dosage adjustment being at the prescriber's discretion. With a regular course of Reiki treatments we support the body in a direction towards better balance in a holistic manner. Reiki is always supportive to well-being.
Is Reiki suitable during pregnancy?
Yes, many women have reported Reiki to be beneficial during pregnancy and even birth. As a major bonus the unborn child will also benefit from any Reiki treatment the mother receives. (Please note that the giving of Reiki by a practitioner during childbirth, or for 10 days thereafter, requires the permission of the client's midwife, as during such time they are the health professional responsible for your care). The possibility also exists to learn Reiki to support you in your pregnancy by performing Reiki on yourself.
Can I combine Reiki with other forms of natural Therapy or complementary medicine?
Yes, Reiki can complement various natural treatment forms. As Reiki is operating from a 'whole person' view and being holistic in nature, it can support other natural forms of treatment that also work from this holistic view. As an example we have found Reiki and acupuncture to work well together. Reiki also works well with disciplines such as counselling by supporting the healing process.
Can Reiki be used in conjunction with conventional allopathic medicine?
Yes, Reiki can be safely used with conventional medical treatment. Reiki does not interfere with any conventional allopathic medical treatment and can have various applications, be it just aiding relaxation, or supporting post surgery recovery. As Reiki has a strong emotional healing component I have found that many I have worked with have reported Reiki to be beneficial in supporting conventional emotional support methods. Reiki therapy can also be used with the intention to help reduce experiences of any side effects of allopathic medicine. There are many applications where Reiki can be supportive to conventional medicine.
Can Reiki help someone with a terminal illness?
People with terminal illness often find Reiki helps them to feel calm and relaxed. In addition, dependent on the illness and the medical team's approach, it can be used as a supportive aid in helping to reduce some side effects of prescribed drug regimes, as well as supporting a sense of peace.
How many treatments am I likely to need?
The number of Reiki treatments and indeed treatment frequency are dependent on multiple factors, which may, for example, include: what you are looking to Reiki to help you with in your life, the complexity of your current health and emotional well-being, the degree of balance in your life (or lack of), the length of time you have had challenges in certain areas of your life, as well as the degree of healing you are in need of. A treatment plan for someone with multiple severe health challenges would be very different from one for someone wanting to aid relaxation. Your Reiki practitioner will be able to give further guidance to this question at the end of your first Reiki treatment once they have had the opportunity to assess the level and magnitude of any imbalances, whilst also taking into consideration your needs and expectations. They will then be in a more informed position to advise a recommended treatment plan for you, based on their findings. You can then decide what is right for you at that time and proceed from there. To give you some idea, a common pattern (with a moderate degree of challenge) might be an initial course of six treatments, then a review, with the likelihood of then moving into a phase of reducing frequency of treatments over time. After experiencing a course of Reiki many people find that they wish to continue with their Reiki and then opt for a more 'maintenance' phase of treatments as a part of their ongoing health and well-being programme.
What happens during a Reiki treatment?
During a Reiki treatment you lie fully clothed on a therapy bed (or seated). The treatment is conducted in a calm, quiet environment where you can really relax. The Reiki practitioner will place their hands to where imbalance is found, and then channel Reiki's healing energy through their hands to you, dissipating areas of tension, emotional load or stagnation in energy flow to restore balance, during which time you relax and unwind to some calming music. (Hand placement will be discussed with your practitioner prior to any treatment, with any modifications made to ensure a balance between treatment effectiveness and you feeling totally comfortable with the process).
What am I likely to experience with Reiki?
During the Reiki treatment Reiki is commonly experienced as a gentle flow of energy. Sensations vary but might include heat, cold or mild tingling. A deep sensation of relaxation is common, which continues after the treatment has ended. Acute effects at the time of the treatment vary between people, some feel less than others, but a person's perceptions have no bearing on the treatment effectiveness.
What are the common after effects of a Reiki treatment?
The individual response to a Reiki treatment is non-standardised and can vary from treatment to treatment. Below is a list of some post treatment effects that some people may experience after a Reiki treatment - be aware that it is also completely normal not to experience any of these sensations, which can include: increased feelings of relaxation or an underlying sense of calm, a sense of clarity of thought or a lightness of mind, a need for increased rest or sleep, feeling more emotional, an increase in awareness of your intuition, having more vivid dreams, or seeing colours more so. Occasionally a person may experience mild physical sensations that are indicative of the body cleansing itself, as Reiki supports the body's natural healing mechanisms. It is important to observe these sensations in a positive context, as they are signs of the body bringing itself back into balance. This is a healing experience and should be recognised as such. Rather than a focus on suppressing the sensations in any such an event, we recommend that you try to maximise rest and recovery during this period. Such sensations commonly last only a few days. Should you have any concerns however please contact your practitioner for specific advice.
About the author, Shaun Mckeown: could be labeled as a performance strategist, or coach, or a life balance specialist. In essence Shaun is a strategic, creative problem solver, with a holistic view. He has over 15 years professional experience helping people with health, well-being, sport performance, reducing stress and life balance. He has a BSc.(Hons) degree in Sport and Exercise Science, as well as experience coaching and teaching in exercise conditioning, holistic lifestyle and nutrition, sport performance and Reiki. So has both science and holistic perspectives.
The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. Shaun Mckeown, disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.
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