SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

 
vol.16 issue48Nursing governance and its impact on the quality of organization of health care services for older people in the Catalan region of SpainFactors that make oral feeding difficult to hospitalized elderly patients author indexsubject indexarticles search
Home Pagealphabetic serial listing  

My SciELO

Services on Demand

Journal

Article

Indicators

Related links

  • On index processCited by Google
  • Have no similar articlesSimilars in SciELO
  • On index processSimilars in Google

Share


Enfermería Global

On-line version ISSN 1695-6141

Enferm. glob. vol.16 n.48 Murcia Oct. 2017  Epub Oct 01, 2017

http://dx.doi.org/10.6018/eglobal.16.4.259141 

Originales

Reiki effect on subjective well-being: experimental study

José Henrique do Nascimento Bessa1  , Rafael Tavares Jomar2  , Alexandre Vicente da Silva2  , Ellen Marcia Peres3  , Rafael Moura Coelho Pecly Wolter4  , Denize Cristina de Oliveira5 

1Nurse. Associate Professor, Nursing College at State University of Rio de Janeiro. Brazil.

2Nurse. Assistant Professor, Nursing College at State University of Rio de Janeiro. Brazil.

3Nurse. Associate Professor, Nursing College at State University of Rio de de Janeiro. Brazil.

4Psychologist. Visiting Professor of the State University of Rio de Janeiro’s Institute of Psychology. Brazil.

5Nurse. Nursing College Professor at the State University of Rio de Janeiro. Brazil.

ABSTRACT

Objective

Evaluate the effect of Reiki on subjective well-being of people seeking this therapy.

Methods

Experimental study conducted with 60 subjects were allocated to intervention (Reiki) and control groups (induction concentration without energy manipulation). We used the Escala de Bem-Estar Subjetivo, which had the mean scores of its three dimensions - life satisfaction, positive affect and negative affect - compared between groups by submitting them to the Student's t test with level 5 % of statistical significance.

Results

After follow-up of 21 days and submitted to three therapeutic sessions, Reiki enhanced the positive affect scale (p = 0,01) of indivuduals without, however, influence negative affect dimensions and life satisfaction of subjective well-being.

Conclusion

Reiki enhances the positive effect of subjective well-being of people seeking this therapy.

Keywords Complementary therapies; Therapeutic touch; Subjective well-being; Epidemiology experimental

INTRODUCTION

The study of Subjective Well-Being (BES in Portuguese) - also known as happiness, satisfaction or state of mind - tries to understand the assessment that people make of their lives. In addition to being considered a subjective life quality evaluator, BES has as main objective not the research of negative or pathological psychological states, but the differentiation of levels of well-being that people can achieve in their lives1. Its own health conception of the World Health Organization includes the welfare as a key concept, as the state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely as the absence of disease2.

Integrative and complementary practices have been recognized as approaches that stimulate the natural mechanisms of prevention of diseases and health recovery through effective technologies, with emphasis on listening, the therapeutic link development and integration of the human being with the environment3. One of the integrative and complementary practices, Reiki: a Japanese therapeutic technique aimed at the restoration of body energy system thanks to the stimulus of the natural healing processes of the body4, which can be used to induce relaxation and treat health problems5)(6)(7) .

Reiki is a natural system of balance and energy replacement, through emplacement of hands, which contributes to the production of deep relaxation, energy release and harmonization within. Considered a holistic approach to health and wellness, Reiki can also be understood as a life philosophy for the promotion of personal and other people’s happiness4.

Some studies have investigated the effects of Reiki on health and showed beneficial effects, such as decreased blood pressure5)(6, anxiety and stress8)(9, pain9 and heart rate9)(10. As the effects of Reiki on objectively measured phenomena have been described by the scientific literature, its effects on subjective phenomena, including emotional responses and global trials of satisfaction with life, should also be investigated.

The BES tries to understand happiness: cause, what destroys and who has it1)(11. Therefore, its evaluation should consider the overall satisfaction with life and a personal analysis on the frequency with which they are tested positive and negative emotions. To be reported a satisfactory level of BES, the individual needs to recognize to keep in high level your satisfaction with life, high frequency of positive emotional experiences and low frequencies of negative emotional experiences11)(12.

From the knowledge of how Reiki works in the energy fields of the people, the hypothesis of this study is that this therapy can contribute to maintain the physical, mental and social equilibrium leading to improvement in satisfaction with life, to high rates of positive and negative affections rates, contributing to the achievement of a satisfactory BES. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of Reiki in the BES of people seeking this therapy.

METHODS

Experimental study developed in the core of a public University located in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Individuals with ≥ 18 years of age which, regardless of the reason, sought Reiki in the University extension core, between the months of November 2012 and April 2013, and have never had previous experience with this therapy were considered eligible. In the studied period, all 60 individuals who met the eligibility criteria were invited to participate in the study; there were no refusals to participate.

Individuals were allocated in the intervention group (n = 30) or control group (n = 30) using a search warrant for care, in which the first individual who sought care received (Reiki); the second received placebo (inducing concentration energy manipulation); the third, intervention, placebo, and so on. At the time of allocation, in a reserved room and without the presence of anyone else, previously trained interviewers collected information on gender, age, education, marital status and religion, besides applying the Subjective well-being Scale11, built and validated in Brazil to evaluate the BES from three dimensions: satisfaction with life, positive affect and negative affect.

Both the intervention as placebo - without the study participants’ awareness - were applied by two therapists initiated in Reiki for at least 12 years. After allocation, in own room of University extension, the first of the three therapeutic sessions that each participant was submitted, with seven days interval between them that lasted, on average, 42 minutes. The intervention was implemented through the emplacement of therapist’s hands for six minutes in each of the seven main chakras (located at the top of the head, between the eyebrows, the base of the neck, thorax centre, below the xifoide process and the navel and perineal area) of the body of the individual, who was lying on a stretcher with his eyes closed. The placebo was applied by a therapist by inducing concentration energy manipulation of the individual, who was lying on a stretcher with his eyes closed.

At the end of the third therapy session, in a reserved room and without the presence of anyone else, previously trained interviewers applied again, the scale of subjective well-being11, a likert-type scale that has 62 items: 21 describe positive affections and 26, negative ones, and the subject answer how have it been feeling lately on a scale in which 1 means a little and 5 extremely; 15 items describe trials relating to the evaluation of satisfaction with life and should be answered on a scale in which 1 means strongly disagree and 5 fully agree11.

In the software SPSS version 19.0 were performed univariate analyses with simple frequency distribution for the description of individuals. The average of the subjective well-being scale’s dimensions scores (11 for the intervention and control groups were compared, subjecting them to Student's t-test with 5% level of statistical significance.

This study was approved by the Research Ethics Committee of the State University of Rio de Janeiro (045/2012) and the guys who have agreed to participate signed an informed consent. It is worth noting that, at the end of the interview that occurred after the third therapy session, the control group subjects were informed that they had not received Reiki and, if wished, could schedule to start this therapy.

RESULTS

Among the participants of this study, 88.3% were female, 43.3% had complete college, 61.7% were single and 88.3% were religious (Table 1). The age of the participants ranged from 18 to 72 years.

Table 1 Sociodemographic characteristics of study participants. Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil, 2012/2013. (N = 60) 

Sociodemographic characteristics n %
Gender
Female 53 88,3
Male 7 11,7
Education
Until complete elementary school 4 6,7
Until complete high school 10 16,7
Incomplete college or more 46 76,6
Marital status
Not married 37 61,7
Married 16 26,7
Divorced 5 8,3
Widower 2 3,3
Religion
Have 53 88,3
Do not have 7 11,7

The comparison of the dimensions scores’ averages of the subjective well-being scale11 for the intervention and control groups, before its components receive the therapy for which they were allocated, showed no statistically significant differences (Table 2).

Table 2 Mean scores of the Subjective Well-Being Scale, second group, before follow-up. Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil, 2012/2013. (N = 60) 

Dimensions of the Subjective Well-Being Scale Intervention Group Score Averages Control Group Score Averages p-value
Positive Affect 3,41 3,21 0,11
Negative Affect 2,76 2,81 0,26
Satisfaction with life 3,05 3,07 0,19

After 21 days of follow-up, Reiki has enhanced the positive affect (p = 0.01), without influence the negative affect and satisfaction with life of the BES of people who sought and received three Reiki sessions in comparison to those who sought, but did not receive any session (Table 3).

Table 3 Subjective Well-Being Scale scores averages, second group, after 21 days of follow-up. Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil, 2012/2013. (N = 60) 

Dimensions of the Subjective Well-Being Scale Intervention Group Score Averages Control Group Score Averages p-value
Positive Affect 3,71 3,33 0,01
Negative Affect 1,95 1,98 0,23
Satisfaction with life 3,02 3,08 0,29

DISCUSSION

The results of this study show that Reiki enhances positive affection without, however, influence the negative affect and satisfaction with life of the BES to people who seek and receive Reiki in comparison to those who seek him, but not receive.

Experimental study conducted with 35 healthy psychology students who have received ten Reiki sessions (intervention) or concentration and relaxation induction (placebo) showed that 18 students who received Reiki presented, without statistical significance, better health and well-being and reduction in levels of depression, anxiety and stress when compared to those who have not received this therapy13.

Integrative and complementary practices are being increasingly used, helping not only in reducing the levels of stress, anxiety and depression, but also in pain relief and in controlling binge eating. The main reasons that lead people to seek such practices are the range of well-being, serenity, improves the mood, sleep and compassion14.

Harmony, balance and amount of vital energy in the body are essential for human health and for the proper functioning of the self. At birth, all have a certain level of vital energy. Nevertheless, to spend varying amounts of this energy on a daily basis, if not recovered satisfactorily, probably we will face physical, emotional and mental imbalances or even diseases6.

It is worth noting that Reiki has the ability to dissolve energy blocks and provide an increase in the energy potential of the human being, providing balance and return to the natural state of health, increasing the sense of well-being and positive feelings15. On the results of this study, it is possible to affirm that the Reiki, to nourish and strengthen the human energy system, contributes to the positive feelings, enhancing by providing healthy psychological effects.

This study presents some limitations, such as the convenience and small sample, which prevented the analysis of the effect of Reiki on the BES considering the influence of other variables, such as the reason for the search for this therapy; and the positive and negative affect dimensions of the subjective well-being scale11) make reference to transient emotional states, that is, the time when the characteristic individual participated in the research. In addition, the following 21 days with only three therapeutic sessions might not have been enough so that possible beneficial effects of Reiki on other dimensions of BES could be observed.

It is worth mentioning that the comparison of the dimensions scores’ averages of the subjective well-being scale11 for the intervention and control groups, before its components receive the therapy for which they were allocated, showed no statistically significant differences. This result demonstrates that, although the process of allocation of individuals was not random, the similarity of the groups regarding the BES was guaranteed, strengthening, thus, its internal validity.

This study results point to the beneficial effects of Reiki on the subjective well-being phenomenon, more precisely on your positive affection, which assesses dimension if the experiences were interspersed by pleasant emotions much more than suffering11)(12. Soon the Reiki, acting in the energy fields of people, seems to contribute to the achievement of a satisfactory BES.

CONCLUSION

Reiki enhances positive affection without, however, influence the negative affect and satisfaction with life of the BES of people seeking this therapy.

REFERENCIAS

1. Diener E, Suh E, Lucas R, Smith, H. Subjective well-being: three decades of progress. Psychol Bull. 1999; 125:276-302. Disponível em: http://stat.psych.uiuc.edu/~ediener/Documents/Diener-Suh-Lucas-Smith_1999.pdfLinks ]

2. World Health Organization. Constitution of the World Health Organization. Basic Documents. Genebra (Sw): World Health Organization; 1946. [ Links ]

3. Ministério da Saúde (Br). Política Nacional de Práticas Integrativas e Complementares no SUS. Brasília (DF): Ministério da Saúde; 2006. [ Links ]

4. De'Carli J. Reiki como filosofia de vida. São Paulo: Isis; 2012. [ Links ]

5. Rodriguez LD, Morales MA, Villanueva IC, Lao CF, Polley M, Fernandez de la Penas C. The application of Reiki in nurses diagnosed with Burnout Syndrome has beneficial effects on concentration of salivar IgA and blood pressure. Rev Latino-Am Enfermagem. 2011; 19:1132-8. Disponível em: http://www.scielo.br/pdf/rlae/v19n5/10.pdfLinks ]

6. Salles LF, Vannucci L, Salles A, Silva MJP. The effect of Reiki on blood hypertension. Acta Paul Enferm. 2014; 27:479-84. Disponível em: http://www.scielo.br/pdf/ape/v27n5/1982-0194-ape-027-005-0479.pdfLinks ]

7. Bessa JHN, Oliveira DC. O uso da terapia Reiki nas Américas do Norte e do Sul: uma revisão. Rev enferm UERJ. 2013; 21:660-4. Disponível em: http://www.e-publicacoes.uerj.br/index.php/enfermagemuerj/article/view/10048/7834Links ]

8. Ackerman DL, Cameron ME. Energy healing for anxiety and stress reduction. Clinical focus. Primary Psychiatry. 2002; 9:47-50. Disponível em: http://primarypsychiatry.com/energy-healing-for-anxiety-and-stress-reduction/Links ]

9. Hulse RS, Stuart-Shor EM, Russo J. Endoscopic procedure with a modified Reiki intervention: a pilot study. Gastroenterol Nurs. 2010; 33:20-6. Disponível em: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20145447Links ]

10. Friedman RSC, Burg MM, Miles P, Lee F, Lampert R. Effects Reiki on autonomic activity early after acute coronary syndrome. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2010; 56:995-6. Disponível em: http://rehab.ucla.edu/workfiles/Urban%20Zen/JACC-Effects_of_Reiki.pdfLinks ]

11. Albuquerque AS, Troccoli BT. Desenvolvimento de uma escala de bem-estar subjetivo. Psic Teor e Pesq. 2004; 20:153-64. Disponível em: http://www.scielo.br/pdf/ptp/v20n2/a08v20n2Links ]

12. Siqueira MMM, Padovam VAR. Bases teóricas de bem-estar subjetivo, bem-estar psicológico e bem-estar no trabalho. Psic Teor e Pesq. 2008; 24:201-9. Disponível em: http://www.scielo.br/pdf/ptp/v24n2/09Links ]

13. Bowden D, Goddard L, Gruzelier J. A randomised controlled single-blind trial of the effects of Reiki and positive imagery on well-being and salivary cortisol. Brain Res Bull. 2010; 81:66-72. Disponível em: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19819311Links ]

14. Rodriguez EOL, Silva GG, Lopes Neto D, Montesinos MJL, Llor AMS, Gois CFL. Uso de práticas integrativas e complementares no tratamento de estresse ocupacional: uma revisão integrativa. Enferm glob. 2015; 14:291-303. Disponível em: http://revistas.um.es/eglobal/article/viewFile/216901/179451Links ]

15. Lübeck W, Hosak M. O grande livro de símbolos do Reiki. São Paulo: Pensamento; 2010. [ Links ]

Received: May 18, 2016; Accepted: August 23, 2016

Creative Commons License Este es un artículo publicado en acceso abierto bajo una licencia Creative Commons