Environmental Therapy:
An Important Step in Pain Reduction

By Teresa Emerick, D.M.

 

Environmental therapy is important for most chronic pain patients, especially those suffering with fibromyalgia, migraines, lupus, severe allergies, and most autoimmune illnesses. These patients develop a heightened sensitivity that demands they become aware of their surroundings at all times in order to minimize symptoms. Most Western physicians are not familiar with environmental therapy and what an essential tool it can be for their chronic pain patients. However, many alternative therapists that specialize in energy therapies such as Reiki, massage, EFT, acupuncture, music therapy, and reflexology understand the importance of energy flow in a patient’s surrounding environment to promote healing.

The very minute that we are born,
we start to die.

Every cell in the body goes through a process of birth, transformation, and death. These cells are all connected and react to their surrounding environment. What we see, hear, feel, smell, and even think, all create a ripple effect that causes a cellular reaction within our body. A bigger issue can be the things we do not see, hear, feel, or smell, but are still there causing problems, such as energy.

Energy is what makes everything happen. There are two types: potential energy, which is stored energy, and kinetic energy, which is moving energy. Energy can be emitted in many forms, such as chemical energy within molecules, the radiant energy of light, thermal energy transferred as heat, or energy transferred between electrical fields. One form of energy can be transferred to another form. The laws of thermodynamics determine why and how energy is transferred.

The science of energy is so broad it could truly be titled Endless. The Internet is a great source to learn more. Simply go to the educational website for ScienceNetLinks: and you will see how broad the science of energy really is. Another great resource is Energy Quest, the award-winning educational website created by the California Energy Commission.

To understand how environmental therapy works, we must first understand the basics of invisible energy and how the movement of this energy can affect us. The largest organ in the human body is its outer shell. Soft and flexible, the skin contains billions of sensors that react to all stimuli and is usually the body’s first line of defense against the outside environment. Everything that touches our skin causes a reaction, from a gentle breeze to the sound waves coming from a concert speaker. We absorb both nutrients and toxins through our skin from water, air, soaps, lotions, medications, oils, cleaning chemicals, and sometimes even our clothes. Electrical currents can be a huge problem, as we often do not even realize they exist.

Green leaves with reflection in water

A pebble thrown into a pond creates a ripple. The larger the stone, the larger the waves. Even when you no longer see the ripples, the energy wave continues throughout the water, and though you only see the ripples on top of the water, a wave of energy is also happening below the surface. Remember a tsunami can start from a small earthquake deep within the ocean floor that creates a wave of energy. That wave continues to grow through the water into a devastating force, but usually isn’t seen from above until it is too late.

When we walk through a room we create a wave of energy. That wave continues until it hits something, but it doesn’t stop there. It bounces off of everything it hits and reflects energy back toward us. Think of a pinball machine. The ball bounces back and forth until it loses momentum and either stops or exits the nearest available hole. The more items it has to bounce off of, the longer it keeps going.

Everything in the universe is made of energy, and becoming aware of your immediate environment and removing as many offensive materials as possible can be an important step toward recovery and symptom management.

The first step is usually the hardest, but if it is the only thing you do, it can make the biggest impact. Eliminating clutter is always a challenge, but the open flow of energy can be liberating. Get rid of unnecessary household items, put collectables behind smooth glass cases, clear off counter tops, minimize large sculpted wall hangings, replace several small throw rugs with one large area carpet, organize books by size and clothes by color, and move furniture around so you are able to walk from one space to another without having to detour around too many items.
Living room
Your home should not look like a maze that you must maneuver in order to get from one room to another. Yes, this may turn out to be a lot of work for some, but start with the room you spend the most time in. Make it your safe haven by removing clutter and restoring a peaceful flow of energy. If you truly do not know where or how to start, contact a professional organizer for a consultation.

Man-made toxins are so offensive that eliminating just one can show improvement. The goal should be a living environment filled with smooth materials that do not smell or feel like plastic or mold. This includes furniture, drapery, flooring, bedding and clothing. Soft, smooth fabrics are easier to keep dust free and allow energy to flow more naturally without creating ripples. Remove scented candles and plug in air fresheners and replace them with Essential Oil diffusers. Replace artificial flowers with live plants to help clean the air.

Change furnace and heating system filters monthly to help eliminate airborne toxins and dust. Use baking soda and vinegar to replace offensive cleaning chemicals, and peroxide instead of bleach when possible. There are many online recipes on how to make your own cleaning supplies. Using less chemicals means less irritation to your senses, less positive ions released, and less money spent.

The goal is to transform your home into a safe haven that promotes healing.

Certain lighting can emit irritating energy waves, leading to headaches, migraines, and an increase in all over pain. Natural light is best when possible, but soft white bulbs and LED lights seem to be less offensive than florescent lighting. Using sheer curtains can defuse direct sunlight without blocking it, creating a more open space and flow of natural light. Direct sunlight is a great disinfectant. It kills germs and dust mites, feeds the plants, and promotes the production of Vitamin D in your body, which is known to help reduce pain and depression.

The Princess and the PeaRemember the story of the Princess and the Pea? The Princess could not sleep on top of a stack of soft mattresses because of one little pea under the very bottom of the stack. When someone has chronic pain, they can develop sensitivity to many bumps, springs, and even crumbs under cushions and bedding that no one else can feel. By sitting on different pieces of furniture, and really paying attention to how your body feels, you can quickly determine whether the furniture is to blame for your increased pain. The fact is most of us cannot afford to simply replace everything in our home, but we may not have to. Investing in the right mattress, a sturdy chair with no springs, or simply adding the right type of cushion to an existing chair can make life with chronic pain much more livable. Glues and chemicals used to produce new furniture and carpeting can be irritating to your body, so spring and summer are the best time to replace furniture pieces so you can open windows and air out the house.

Anything that is plugged in, even if it is not turned on, emits energy waves. Unplug things when possible, and consider using grounding or earthing mats when using computers, cell phones and while watching television. This will reduce the voltage your body receives and can promote healing.

It may sound complicated, but environmental therapy is simple once you know what to look for. The goal is to transform your home into a safe haven that promotes healing.

About the Author:
Teresa Emerick is an alternative therapist that specializes in treating fibromyalgia and chronic pain patients. A Doctor of Metaphysics, Teresa practices environmental therapy, Reiki, EFT, meditation, electromagnetic stimulation, grounding, and visualization. Teresa often shares healing tips on her Facebook page at DAILY PAIN Support Group https://www.facebook.com/DailyPainSupportGroup.