Healing Touch: A Positive Personal Experience

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Healing Touch is a non-invasive, bio-field energy therapy that utilizes light touch techniques to influence a patient’s own energetic system. This modality was created by Janet Mentgen, RN, BSN, in 1989. Mentgen recognized the need for a healing modality that reduced pain, anxiety and stress in hospitalized patients. She fashioned the first Healing Touch Program from techniques borrowed from principles used in Therapeutic Touch, the book Joy’s Way, by Brugh Joy, and the work of Barbara Brennan.

I first experienced Healing Touch in the autumn of 2000. I had chronic back pain, fatigue, allergies, digestive issues and other health concerns. The practitioner asked me fill out a complete health history and inquired as to the purpose of my visit. While the treatment was in progress, I could feel the chronic pain, stress and muscle tension leave my body. I was so impressed by my positive experience, I asked for information on Healing Touch classes. Two weeks later, I found myself taking the first level of the Healing Touch core curriculum at the College of St. Catherine’s in Minneapolis.

The Healing Touch Program (the curriculum arm of Healing Touch International Inc.) is a multi-leveled nursing continuing education certificate program. The classes are endorsed by the American Holistic Nurses Association, and locally by the Minnesota Holistic Nurses Association. The program incorporates a variety of structured techniques that are taught in sequenced levels 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Upon completion of level 5, the student has the option of completing some more requirements and applying for certification.

An independent review board meets to review applications. If students pass, they are allowed to use the credentials of Certified Healing Touch Practitioner CHTP, and must adhere to a prescribed Scope of Practice and Code of Ethics. Level 6 is available to become a Certified Healing Touch Instructor. There are affiliate organizations that offer their own certifications including: Healing Touch for Animals, Healing Touch Spiritual Ministry (Utilizing Essential Oils & Scripture) and Healing Touch for Babies.

Nursing protocol and charting is utilized during a patient’s intake, assessment and treatment process. The "Basic Healing Touch Sequence" is a procedure used to clear, energize and balance the client’s energy field. The intake session determines the reason(s) for the patient to receive Healing Touch. An important part of this process is to receive permission from the patient. Many practitioners require a written consent form to be signed before beginning.

The healer then goes through their own personal preparation to start the healing session. The practice of "grounding" and "centering" is mandatory to affect a positive outcome.

The healer then "attunes" to the patient. This initiates the relationship and journey into the healing session. The practitioner then begins the Pre-Treatment Energetic Assessment. This is done to assess the patient’s energy field and identify any differences in energy flow. The practitioner uses a pendulum first, performs a hand scan of the patient’s energy centers and auric field. Any notable findings are jotted down during the session on an assessment form in the client’s chart. After the assessment, the practitioner may describe the findings to the patient, and continue with the goal as planned, or modify the techniques that will be used.

Many Healing Touch interventions exist, and most of the techniques involve light touch with the practitioner’s hands, still or in motion. All techniques are non-invasive and gentle. Some practitioners can perform energy therapy without physically touching the patient.

After the desired techniques are completed, the practitioner performs a Post-Treatment Energetic Assessment. During this stage, the patient can give feedback before the treatment is concluded. If the treatment session is deemed complete to both parties, the client is "grounded" and then the practitioner "releases" from the client’s energy field. The practitioner and client perform a Post-Treatment Evaluation and feedback sitting. Some practitioners give general health advice, or issue referrals to other health professionals. The client may be assigned homework (books to read, journaling, etc.) due before the next session. Generally, each session takes about one hour.

For more information on Healing Touch, visit www.healingtouch.net or www.healingtouchprogram.com.

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Mark Peterson
Mark A. Peterson holds a Master's degree in Mass Communications, specializing in medical and science news reporting. He recently completed a degree in Integrative Health and Healing from Anoka-Ramsey Community College. He has worked at the University of Minnesota Medical Center for more than 17 years. His life's mission is educating physicians and other medical staff on the benefits of Complementary and Alternative Medicine modalities integrated into the patient-care paradigm. He can be contacted at: 1816 Eustis St., St. Paul, MN 55113-5220, or e-mail [email protected]. Copyright © 2008 Mark A. Peterson. All Rights Reserved.

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