Georgia Papademetriou, Foot Reflexologist, Nerve Reflexologist, Ear Acupunturist

Reflexology for Stress Relief

GUEST WRITER: While self-soothing tools like the Emotional Freedom Technique can help us relieve the emotional component of stress, modalities like Reflexology can help us relieve the physical component of stress. Parents with children who suffer from stress-related stomach aches, migraines, etc could look into Foot Reflexology as a possible drug-free solution for their child’s stress-related aches and pains. Georgia Papademetriou is a Nerve Reflexologist in Athens, Greece. In this article she talks about:

  • What is Foot Reflexology?
  • The latest research on Foot Reflexology interventions for depression, anxiety and sleep.
  • An example of a 6-month Foot Reflexology intervention with a very stressed mum of 2.


Foot reflexology is a systemic practice in which a practitioner exerts pressure on specific points of the foot to stimulate the body and provide health benefits. Reflexology can help alleviate somatic stress-related symptoms, such as:

  • stiff neck muscles
  • digestion problems
  • vertigo
  • headaches and migraines
  • sleep problems, etc.

Foot reflexology is commonly practiced as a complementary therapy. It is one of the non-pharmacological therapies to alleviate our mental, emotional, and spiritual health, while improving the quality of our life.

LATEST SCIENTIFIC Research: Reflexology & STRESS

It is now a well-known fact that the somatization of stress is associated with depression, anxiety and sleep. Ιn September 15th 2020, a literature review study regarding foot reflexology and how it can help people with stress was published online. The aim of this study was to conduct a systematic and rigorous review of the latest scientific research to study the evidence for whether foot reflexology is effective in supporting people with adult depression, anxiety, and sleep quality. 

Twenty-six eligible studies were included to assess the effect of Foot Reflexology intervention on the reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety and improving quality of sleep. These 26 randomized controlled trials involved 2,366 participants. They were adults aged 18 years or older, independent of factors such as race, gender, or health status. All these studies had different lengths and frequency of intervention programs, or duration of sessions. The people who participated in them only received reflexology, without taking part in any other therapy at the same time. 

The meta-analyses of these 26 studies showed that foot reflexology intervention significantly improved adult depression, anxiety, and sleep disturbance. 



I once worked with a 48-year-old woman who had a senior position in a large multinational company, and was also a mother of two and a wife. She was very stressed and had neck and back pain, digestion problems (small and large intestine), uterus fibroid, as well sleeping problems (would wake up at 03.00 in the morning and could not go back to sleep). Before reflexology, she would take 3 Xanax pills (Anxiolytic pills) per day. 

She received reflexology for 6 months, 2 days per week. The results were just amazing! Her stress levels were much better. The uterus fibroid shrank to about half its size. She no longer had neck and back pain. She would wake up directly in the morning and not in between. No more digestion problems and reduced Xanax from 3 pills a day to 2 pills a day. During that period, she received no other treatment (e.g. psychotherapy, medical or complementary therapy).


Wei-Li Wang et al (2020) “Effect of Foot Reflexology Intervention on Depression, Anxiety, and Sleep Quality in Adults: A Meta-Analysis and Metaregression of Randomized Control Trials” (Published online September 15 2020), US National Library of Medicine: National Institutes of Health.

About the author

Nerve Reflexology Georgia Papademetriou

Georgia Papademetriou is a Nerve Reflexologist and Ear Acupuncturist based in Athens (Maroussi area), Greece. She loves her job and commits to continual professional development by regularly attending educational programs. Georgia has been providing Foot Reflexology services over the last 12 years, and she loves taking care of people.


If you found this article interesting, you may also enjoy reading this article on another non-invasive approach to pain relief for the emotional component of stress:  

“Releasing Emotional and Physical Pain: Can Tapping Help?” by Eleni Vardaki (EFT Practitioner)