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FAQs About Healing Touch

By Kathy Edstrom

What is Healing Touch?

As defined by the Colorado Center For Healing Touch, Inc.: “Healing Touch is an energy based therapeutic approach to healing. Healing Touch uses touch to influence the energy system thus affecting physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health and healing.”

When was the Healing Touch Program developed?

Healing Touch was developed by Janet Mentgen, R.N., B.S.N. who practiced energy based care since 1980 and continued her quest to revolutionize energy-based therapy until her passing in 2005. In 1988 Mentgen was honored as the Holistic Nurse of the Year by the American Holistic Nurses' Association (AHNA) for her outstanding work.

Healing Touch was first offered as a pilot project at the University of Tennessee and in Gainsville, FL in 1989. It became a certificate program of the AHNA in 1990, and certification of Healing Touch practitioners and instructors began in 1993. In 1996 due to its tremendous growth, Healing Touch International was formed to house the program to meet the expanding needs of Healing Touch practitioners and instructors worldwide. (Information provided from Healing Touch 1996 Level I Notebook)

How does Healing Touch work?

Healing Touch is a complementary modality that works in conjunction with traditional methods of healing. It is NOT a substitute for them. Each session is personalized for the individual person or animal. The Healing Touch Practitioner works to align the energy that surrounds the physical body and the energy that flows throughout the inner body. This process reactivates the body, mind, and spirit connection to help eliminate blockages to facilitate the healing process through energy rather than a physical means. There is no manipulation done to the body's tissues, muscles or bones.

What is Healing Touch for Animals®(HTA)/Komitor Healing Method, Inc.?

As defined by the Healing Touch for Animals® Founder, Carol Komitor, "Healing Touch for Animals is a bio-field energetic training modality combining philosophies, techniques and applications to promote energy balance and healing of our animals. This program introduces holistic concepts to assist with injuries, illnesses, and surgery, wound healing, behavioral problems and stress related issues. The HTA/KHM techniques are largely based on the Healing Touch for humans - the energy-based modality of Healing Touch that has been recognized throughout the human medical community since 1989. The concepts taught in HTA apply to every animal - large or small, pet or exotic, bird, mammal, reptile or aquatic."

Is there documented research showing the benefits of touch therapy?

Yes. The worlds' first Touch Research Institute has been founded at the University of Miami's Medical School to further explore and document the benefits of touch therapy.

How can my pet benefit from Healing Touch for Animals®?

These are just a few examples of how HTA can help animals with a variety of issues.

  • HTA is a "cooperative" method that works with your pet's veterinary care
  • There is a reduction of anxiety and stress (especially beneficial for overly anxious pets and for pets with behavioral issues)
  • Relaxation takes place (excellent for animals that just “can’t settle down”)
  • It assists with grief management and emotional traumas
  • HTA aids in preparation for medical treatments and with follow-up care after medical treatments and procedures
  • It's helpful with dogs and horses going into competition
  • HTA is wonderful for animals that suffered abuse or abandonment
  • It energizes the energy field (helpful with pets that appear disinterested with life)
  • Overall well-being is achieved

Healing Touch is appropriate for people and animals of all ages. Animals that can benefit from HTA are dogs, cats, horses and caged pets.

Who endorses Healing Touch?

The American Holistic Nurses’ Association, and Healing Touch International, Inc. endorse Healing Touch.

What can I expect at a Healing Touch session?

Some of the techniques are done without touching the physical body. The practitioner focuses on the energy field. However, there are techniques that involve a very light, gentle touch directly on the body. There is no manipulation done to the tissues, muscles or bones. Healing Touch is not considered a treatment for any form of illness.

How long does a session last?

Sessions generally last 60 to 90 minutes. A thorough consultation is done before doing any Healing Touch techniques. The actual Healing Touch for Animals® session is 15 to 45 minutes for animals depending on how accepting the pet is of the HTA techniques.

How does National Institutes of Health classify this form of cooperative care?

According to NIH, "Energy therapies are of two types: One, biofield therapies (e.g., Qi gong, Reiki, and Therapeutic Touch), which are intended to affect energy fields that purportedly surround and penetrate the human body, and two, bioelectromagnetic based therapies that involve the unconventional use of electromagnetic fields such as pulsed fields, magnetic fields, or alternating current or direct current fields." Healing Touch is considered to be a biofield therapy.

NOTE: Healing Touch has profound relaxation effects. A relaxed animal is a focused animal. A focused animal is an animal that can learn. If you have a non-focused animal, the animal can not learn. Healing Touch for Animals® is excellent for helping an animal to relax and focus so that it can be in a learning state.

Disclaimer: Healing Touch for Animals® is not a substitute for veterinary care. If your pet is experiencing health related issues, take your pet to a veterinarian immediately. Kathy Edstrom does not diagnose or treat medical illnesses. Her services are considered "cooperative" care, meaning they work with the treatment and advice provided by your veterinarian.