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Complementary therapies

The use of complementary therapies in palliative and end of life care has become an increasingly significant feature of holistic healthcare in recent years.

Its use alongside conventional medicine and treatments can help ease symptoms of stress and anxiety, for the purpose of supporting relaxation and wellbeing. In addition, these therapies and treatments can help with the management of specific issues such as symptom control of fatigue, breathlessness, nausea, and pain.

At St Helena, complementary therapies are considered an integral part of the holistic care of the patient. Complementary therapies specifically play an important role in supporting patients, families and carers who are facing anxiety and worry because of their illness and diagnosis. 

These non-invasive, holistic practices do not replace the medical, social, or spiritual care of the hospice teams. Rather, they work with the total care given, improving a real sense of wellbeing, comfort and supportThis service is available to our St Helena patients, their family/carers and those who are supported by our bereavement team. 

The complementary therapies are provided by a team of fully qualified professional volunteer therapists, who have met the strict prerequisites to provide therapies at St Helena - you can be reassured you are in safe hands. 

Once a referral is received, an initial assessment will be made by our qualified and experienced complementary therapy team lead, and the most appropriate treatments will be discussed and offered, and tailor-made for your individual needs. 

If you'd like to refer yourself or make a referral on behalf of somebody else please speak to your appointed clinical nurse specialist or support worker/care coordinator or call SinglePoint on 01206 890 360.

A person receives a massage treatment from a complementary therapist
A complementary therapist giving a hand massage treatment  to a patient

Complementary therapies aim to: 

  • Promote relaxation 
  • Reduce anxiety, depression, stress and tension 
  • Reduce pain
  • Alleviate symptoms such as muscle fatigue and tension 
  • Help with constipation 
  • Improve sleep patterns 
  • Reduce psychological distress and give emotional support 
  • Improve wellbeing and quality of life
  • Stimulate circulation/memory
  • Improve skin condition
  • Reduce fears/phobias related to treatments 

Full details of the complementary therapies we offer can be found in our complementary therapies leaflet.

One of the relaxing therapies we provide is known as the 'M' technique® which can be easily learned and carried out at home by a friend of family member. The ‘M’ technique® is a simple method of structured touch. Each movement and sequence is carried out in a set pattern at a set pressure and speed, which never change. Learn how to massage using the 'M' technique® at home with the help of our step-by-step leaflet or watch our ‘M’ technique® video which demonstrates this therapeutic technique in easy-to-follow stages.



Guided relaxations
Relaxation from the feet - watch on YouTube
Relaxation from the eyes - watch on YouTube
Body meditation - watch on YouTube 
Relaxation - the journey - watch on YouTube
Relaxation - the special place - watch on YouTube
Mindfulness and meditation videos - watch on YouTube
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