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Study assesses reiki benefits for mental health in pandemic

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

A study conducted by public health researcher Zelia Pimental Andrade and psychiatrist Mario Roberto Romano (Portugal) shows the vital role Reiki plays in our mental wellbeing.

Conducted by Fiocruz researchers during the Covid-19 pandemic, a study points out that reiki is a practice that can reduce emotional symptoms such as fear of death, panic and anxiety with improved mental health. Qualitative research also highlights that therapeutic listening is fundamental to generate empathy, bonding and reduction of psychic suffering.

During the pandemic, integrative and complementary health practices (PICs) were allied to the treatment of patients with Covid-19. The National Health Council (CNS) approved in May 2020 a recommendation for public managers to include and disseminate them in assisting against the new coronavirus.

From March 2020 to December 2021, at the National School of Public Health (Ensp/Fiocruz), the study aimed to apply reiki – with therapeutic listening in cell phone teleservice – in women under psychiatric care in the Covid-19 pandemic, subjecting to limitation of face-to-face access to medical consultations and psychosocial interventions.

The study was conducted by public health researcher Zelia Pimental Andrade and psychiatrist Mario Roberto Romano. The methodology followed several steps, including "welcoming to celebrate everyday events, overcoming challenges and valuing life, therapeutic listening to guide therapeutic conduct and generating links between user and therapist, application of reiki via cell phone accompanied by high vibration sounds (such as reiki songs), online reports of users on reiki effects for the Reiki therapist, in face-to-face consultations by the psychiatrist," explains the scientist.

The users did not receive other therapies in the period. There were 92 teleservices, with an average of 17 per user, weekly and for one hour. The study included eight women with depressive and acute disorder or in remission.

Therapeutic listening revealed fear of death, panic, anxiety, impotence, insomnia, sadness and body ado. Reports of the effects of reiki included peace, lightness, improved sleep and family relationships. Psychiatric consultations showed reduced anxiety, body pain and sadness, improvement of self-esteem and self-care with reduction and interruption of psychiatric medications.

In view of the results, they emphasize the importance of monitoring the effect of reiki on the maintenance of mental health, "since there was a gradual decrease in psychiatric medications in half of the people treated." Two users discontinued use under medical guidance.

Source: Fiocruz


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