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  • A-Z of therapies

    Introduced in March 2020, Annette Lucas, Acupuncturist, Shiatsu Practitioner and Massage Therapist, has adapted the face to face work usually offered at Cavendish Cancer Care to provide online body based therapies. People who have been affected by cancer have accessed online support for feelings of anxiety, and to combat the experiences of low mood, physical discomfort and fear of impending tests, scans and results.

    Annette says so much can be gained from online support; feeling more grounded, more connected and building resources to face the numerous challenges associated with having a cancer diagnosis for either yourself or someone close. It can involve gentle acupressure, self massage, stretching, breath work, grounding techniques and movement.

    Most importantly, this is a safe space to explore what is is right for you.

    You don’t have to face this alone. You can access support from highly trained and experienced therapists to best support your individual needs.


    Acupuncture is the insertion of fine, sterile needles at carefully chosen sites of the body. Most people do not find the needles painful, although there is a definite sensation. The treatment takes account of the whole person, looking at mental and emotional problems, as well as physical symptoms. Most people who receive acupuncture report not only an imporvement in specific symptoms, but also in a general sense of well being. Acupuncture has a well- deserved reputation for treating pain and may be used to alleviate other physical symptoms. It can also be helpful for people living with depression and anxiety, or who just feel low and worried.

    www.acupuncture.org.uk *


    Aromatherapy involves the use of plant oils, which are first chosen to carefully match your needs after a history case has been taken. The oils are then diluted and massaged into your skin. Aromatherapy may help to relieve feelings of stress and lack of energy by enabling you to feel more relaxed and uplifted. It can also be useful to relieve skin conditions, pains, tensions and cramps, as well as sleep and digestive problems.

    www.aromatherapycouncil.co.uk *

    Art Therapy

    Art Therapy gives the opportunity to explore deep or troubling thoughts and feelings that may be difficult to put into words. This is done in a supportive environment, using a variety of art materials to make drawings, paintings or sculptures, rather than by using conversation alone. The images you make may be used to communicate personal feelings that are difficult to put into words. Our trained art therapists will be on hand to assist you and help you through the whole process. You do not need artistic skill for this therapy.

    www.baat.org *


    Counselling offers a safe place for you to talk and be listened to in a non-judgemental way. Sometimes it can be easier to talk to a stranger than to friends or relatives. Counsellors are trained to listen attentively to you and help you make sense of your thoughts, feelings or behaviour at a difficult time of your life.

    www.counselling.co.uk *


    This is the flow of healing energy from the healer to the person, to balance the body’s own self healing mechanisms and encourage it to work more effectively. The energy goes where it is needed and supports healing to take place whether it be on a physical, emotional or spiritual level. It does not require religious faith or even a belief in it, only for you to allow healing to take place. During sessions therapists may use visualisation as a tool and teach you relaxation techniques to use outside of the session.

    www.ukhealers.info *

    Herbal Medicine

    This is the treatment by way of plant extracts. It is the oldest form of medicine in the world today. The treatment will start with a review of any medicines you are currently taking, your diet, physical health and emotional well-being and then a remedy will be made specifically for you. It is most likely to be in the form of a tincture (liquid extract of plants) that you take in small doses, and it will be prescribed for a set period of time. Herbs can be used to treat a wide range of both physical and emotional problems.

    www.bhma.info *


    The main principle of Homeopathy is the treatment of like with like. This means that a substance that could cause symptoms in a healthy person is given in a very dilute dose as a remedy to a person with similar symptoms. This stimulates the body’s own healing to respond to the symptoms and restore balance. Remedies are made from a wide range of substances, the largest groups being minerals and plants. Doses are so small they can not cause symptoms by themselves but instead mimic the symptoms to remind the body of what it needs. Most people find the consultation homeopathic, or in other words, healing, in itself, giving the space, time and careful listening to bring awareness to the body of what is needed. The remedy in tablet form or liquid form, is then given to support healing in the gentlest possible way.

    www.homeopathy-soh.org *


    This is not like the demonstrations you will see on TV! The best way to think of Hypnotherapy is a state of deep relaxation similar to a daydream in which you are detatched from your every day cares and worries. You can then be helped to let your mind flow on to things that you might wish to change and find ways to do this, free from anxious thought. You will not be asleep or unconscious at any time during the session and can be shown to recreate the same feeling for yourself whenever you feel under pressure outside of the sessions. This is called ‘self hypnosis.’

    www.hypnotherapists.org.uk *

    Massage Therapy

    Massage therapy is probably the oldest known therapy as it is based on touch. It involved the stroking, kneading or gently pressing of the muscles and soft tissues of the body to help you relax mentally and physically. Some types of massage are subtle and gentle, while others are more vigorous. It is possible to just concentrate on small areas of your body such as your feet, neck and shoulders, as well as massaging larger areas of your back. As well as being relaxing, massage may often help a person feel more energised.

    www.gcmt.org.uk *


    It is believed that different areas of the hand or feet are linked to different areas of the body. By applying light but firm pressure with your thumb and fingers to these areas, generally in your feet, the reflexologist can help to relieve imbalances in different areas of your body. By helping you feel relaxed and uplifted, Reflexology may also be used to calm feelings of anxiety and stress and help with lack of energy or poor self esteem. It can also be used to relieve pain or stiffness, digestive disturbance, tension and cramps, as well as to improve sleep.

    www.aor.org.uk *


    This is a simply and natural form of ‘hands on’ healing that originated in Japan. The word means ‘universal life energy’ which is around and within all of us. You will simply lie or sit (fully clothed) and the practitioner will gently place their hands over or on your body, in areas where they feel it is most needed. Reiki is not linked to any sort of belief system. The aim is to support the body to heal itself. Reiki is calming, promoting a sense of peace and relaxation.

    www.reikifed.co.uk *


    This is a hands on healing therapy that originated in Japan. Energy channels in your body can become blocked and and make you feel pressured or unwell. By using manual techniques of gentle pressure, stretching and massaging points of your body, Shiatsu can help release these blockages and improve energy flow. It may also help with a variety of conditions such as back and neck problems, respiratory, digestive and and menstrual disorders, and relieve stress, anxiety and insomnia. You will remain clothed for the treatments.

    www.shiatsusociety.org/public/index.shtml *

    * PLEASE NOTE Cavendish Cancer Care has provided links to other websites for people who require more information on therapies. However Cavendish Cancer Care takes no responsibility for any of the content contained on any of these external sites nor does Cavendish Cancer Care promote any of the individuals named on these sites or any persons and organisations that may be advertising on these sites in any way.