Skip to Content
Therapeutic touch is based on ancient healing practices. The goal of the technique is to help people relax, relieve their pain, and help them heal faster.
Therapeutic touch is thought to promote healing
through restoring harmony to a person's energy fields. Therapeutic touch is used in many settings, including hospice care. When beginning a session, the practitioner first takes time to get centered, calming his or her own mind, then accessing a sense of compassion to become fully present with the patient. During the treatment, the practitioner may place his or her hands lightly on the patient's body or slightly above it. As the practitioner seeks to bring the patient's energy fields into balance, he or she often makes sweeping hand motions above the patient's body.
Some people use
therapeutic touch to reduce pain, ease tense muscles, speed healing, and
improve sleep. It is sometimes used to help people who have pain or discomfort
from cancer or other diseases. The technique does not treat cancer or any other
disease. But there is some evidence that it may reduce stress or improve
well-being in people who have cancer. Research on therapeutic touch is
You can safely use
therapeutic touch along with conventional medical treatments.
No studies have proved that therapeutic touch works for treating any type
of disease. But some health professionals think it may be useful in helping
with stress and anxiety. Some people who receive therapeutic touch say they
have a refreshed spirit, heal faster, and feel better.
Talk with your doctor about any complementary health practice that you would like to try or are already using. Your doctor can help you manage your health better if he or she knows about all of your health practices.
Other Works Consulted
Freeman L (2009). Therapeutic touch: Healing with energy. In L Freeman, ed., Mosby’s Complementary and Alternative Medicine: A Research-Based Approach, 3rd ed., pp. 519–532. St. Louis: Mosby Elsevier.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerKathleen M. Fairfield, MD, MPH, DrPH - Internal Medicine
Current as ofJune 30, 2016
Current as of:
June 30, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen M. Fairfield, MD, MPH, DrPH - Internal Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
© Copyright 2017 Rush-Copley Medical Center • 2000 Ogden Avenue; Aurora, IL 60504
Main: 630-978-6200 • Physician Referral & Information: 630-978-6700 or 866-4COPLEY (866-426-7539)