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Reflexology and Peripheral Neuropathy


Nerves are the communication lines of the body, according to “the barefoot professor”, Daniel Howell, Ph.D., who writes about the effects of footwear on foot anatomy in his Barefoot Book. Howell notes that natural biofeedback occurs between the brain and the estimated 100,000 to 200,000 exteroreceptors in the soles of the feet. Peripheral nerves, he explains, originate from the brain and spinal cord, extend to the skin, muscles and tissues and relay information in the form of electrical impulses.

With peripheral neuropathy, a condition commonly caused by lack of blood flow to the nerves in the feet, degeneration occurs due to the lack of nutrient flow. This causes symptoms such as weakness, pain, numbness, tingling and balance problems.
The practice of reflexology is based on the principle that there are specific areas on the feet and hands which correspond to the organs, glands, skeletal system and other parts of the body. Reflexologists apply the appropriate pressure to points on the feet to stimulate the flow of energy, which can help to relieve pain or congestion throughout the entire body.

A reflexologist can gently activate the damaged nerve fibers to send and receive correct nerve signals. Through reflexology’s light to moderate pressure techniques, a stable rhythm of information is exchanged through the central nervous system, resulting in improvement in blood and lymph circulation, as well as improvement in nerve response. Research shows that using reflexology for peripheral neuropathy, diabetic neuropathy, and other forms of neuropathic pain may benefit those suffering the effects of such conditions.

Happy Feet, Neapolitan Plaza, 4661 Tamiami Tr. N., Naples. To make an appointment, call 239-465-0708. For more information, visit

Joy Feet Spa, 2095 Pine Ridge Rd., Naples. To make an appointment, call 239-298-9945. For more information visit

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