Complementary Therapies

Information about the therapies we offer: Aromatherapy, Reflexology, Reiki and Indian Head Massage

How can complementary therapy help me?

Complementary therapies have become increasingly popular as patients find them both helpful and enjoyable. At St Ann’s we offer a choice of four therapies, which can help to relieve stress and tension, promote feelings of wellbeing and aid relaxation.

The therapies are used as a complement to existing medical treatment for patients, and are also available to relatives and carers. All our therapists are qualified and experienced and, following an assessment, will discuss with you which therapy will best meet your needs.

How will I feel afterwards?

After a treatment, you may feel very relaxed and sleepy. If this is the case, it’s best to have a sleep. Sometimes, people feel energised and want to use their energy. If this is the case, be careful not to overdo it. You may feel more thirsty than usual and it may help to have a glass of water ready to drink. It’s recommended that you avoid alcohol on the day of the treatment.

How can I access the service?

If you’re using our outpatient services, please speak to your keyworker. If you’re an inpatient, please speak to a member of the nursing team. If you’re a relative or carer of a patient, please speak to either their keyworker or member of the nursing team.


Aromatherapy involves the use of essential oils which come from plants. The aromas can help lift our mood, aid relaxation, promote wellbeing and help with the control of some symptoms. There are many ways of using the oils – the most common is aromatherapy massage. The therapist will find one or more oils which you really like and will mix them into a massage oil or cream. The massage may be to your hands or feet, or your back, neck and shoulders depending on what you would prefer.


Reflexology is based on the belief that different areas on the feet and hands are related to different parts of the body. The reflexologist uses light pressure to these areas, which helps to restore a state of balance and promotes feelings of relaxation. The touch used by the therapist is light, but firm. It doesn’t tickle and feedback tells us that most people find it pleasant and relaxing.

Indian Head Massage

This massage is based on ancient treatments given in India. The aim is to reduce the tensions and stresses of everyday life through massage of the neck, shoulders, scalp, back and face. It’s a seated massage which is adapted to suit each individual and can be carried out on skin or through clothes.


Reiki is made up of two words. “Rei” which means universal and “Ki” which means “life energy”. Reiki therapists focus on this energy and think of it flowing through their hands. You will remain fully clothed, whilst the therapist gently places their hands on you, starting at your head and covering most of your body. Reiki is a quiet, gentle, deeply relaxing therapy, particularly useful where individuals want some quiet space and time to themselves.

Making a referral

If you feel someone may benefit from the services provided by St Ann’s, this page will give you a quick guide to referring them to us.

Click here