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Complementary Therapies

Complementary therapies can help to reduce the stress and anxiety associated with cancer or other serious illness. In particular, they help to reduce the feeling of panic by calming the mind.

The physical benefits of complementary therapies can include easing tense muscles and reducing pain.

Aromatherapy and reflexology can help to aid sleep and leave you feeling revitalised.

Therapies are available to anyone within Forest Holme and this includes aromatherapy, reflexology, Indian head massage, Yoga, Change 4 Life classes and Emotional Freedom Technique.

Complementary Therapies


Aromatherapy uses the essential oils of plants. The oils are absorbed through the skin during massage, helping to promote relaxation and a feeling of well-being. Our therapist offers patients a half-hour treatment comprising hand and foot massage.

Indian Head Massage

Indian head massage is a treatment based on Ayurvedic techniques involving work on the upper back, shoulders, neck, scalp and face. A variety of massage movements are used to relieve accumulated tension, stimulate circulation and restore joint movement. The treatments help to reduce stress and fatigue, improve sleep and relaxation, and release neck and shoulder tension.

Emotional Freedom Technique

Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is a psychological therapy that may help with the anxiety and stress associated with cancer and its treatment. In particular, it can help with panic attacks, fear of needles and anticipatory nausea.


Reflexology uses pressure applied by the therapists’ hands on reflex points on the feet. Reflexology is available to patients six weeks after completing chemotherapy or radiotherapy.


Gentle yoga sessions are offered weekly and are especially designed for cancer patients. Prior experience is not essential and patients are supported throughout in a small group.

Dorset Cancer Centre has a small team of two part-time qualified and registered therapists and three volunteers.

If you would like further information on these services, please contact a member of the Complementary Therapies team, between Monday and Thursday, on 0300 019 8118.