Studies Reviewed by James Lake, MD
A recent study reviewed by Psychology Today found patients who received hands-on or distant Reiki treatments experienced significant and equivalent improvements in depressed mood and stress, which were sustained one year after treatment was terminated. No one in the sham Reiki group improved during or following the study. Findings of a 6-week, single-blind, sham-controlled trial of Reiki on depressed mood (73 subjects) suggested that regular Reiki treatments may increase feelings of general well-being and reduce stress. The study population consisted of volunteers who complained of depressed mood or “stress” but did not meet diagnostic criteria for a major psychiatric disorder. Subjects were randomized to weekly 1½-hour, hands-on Reiki versus distant Reiki or distant sham Reiki treatments.
Reiki treatments also may improve anxiety in chronic pain patients. In a small sham-controlled study (12 subjects), chronic pain patients were randomized to receive Reiki versus sham Reiki, progressive muscle relaxation, or no treatment. Improvements in pain and anxiety were significantly greater among patients receiving Reiki than sham-Reiki and relaxation training.
Those individuals experiencing major psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia-spectrum disorders, psychotic disorders, bipolar disorder, or major depression should seek mental health services with a licensed healthcare professional.
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Please Note: This article is provided for informational purposes only, and not intended as specific holistic health advice to the reader. Therefore, reading this article does not create a practitioner/client relationship. Reiki Therapy is meant to be used as a complement to traditional care, and does not substitute for qualified medical or traditional care.