Therapies – defined


Acupuncture treats a wide range of health problems from simple joint injuries to long term debilitating illnesses. Acupuncture is safe, yet powerful and is without side Heartwood Foundation Acupuncture - 2affects. It is appropriate for people of all ages, children to the elderly.

Acupuncture points lie on energy pathways or channels. When a person is healthy the energy flows smoothly and strongly through these channels. If the energy is disrupted then illness will occur. To correct these problems with Acupuncture, a number of very fine sterile needles are inserted into the acupuncture points to regulate the flow of energy in the channels and restore the normal balance. The needles are left in place for about 20 minutes. The points selected are specific for the individual and their particular illness.

Most people need several treatment sessions to recover the body’s normal energy flow and restore health. Acupuncture can be particularly effective in treating people with cancer. It can reduce side effects of chemotherapy such as:

  • Nausea and diarrhea
  • Joint pain and neuropathy
  • Hot flashes
  • Anxiety, restlessness and insomnia
  • Fatigue

In addition, acupuncture can boost the immune system and help the body to regain health and well-being.

Bodywork / MassageHeartwood Foundation Massage - 1

Therapeutic massage has a profound effect on the mind, body and spirit.  For a woman with cancer, massage has a deeply relaxing effect on the body and helps to support the healing journey.  Our nurturing sessions are generally an hour in length and may incorporate a variety of healing techniques, such as: Swedish massage, aromatherapy, lymphatic drainage, energy work, breathing practices and visualization. These approaches help to bring circulation and comfort to the body.  Each treatment is specially designed for the woman’s unique needs.

Massage can minimize symptoms and greatly impact the body’s healing capacity. At a physical level, it can help to:

  • Reduce pain and discomfort
  • Relax muscle tension
  • Eliminate toxins
  • Reduce nausea
  • Adjust to physical changes
  • Speed healing in areas affected by surgery or radiation
  • Boost the immune system function

In addition to physical benefits, massage helps to quiet the mind and provide respite from anxiety.  This often helps to reduce insomnia and bring increased energy.  Professional, nurturing touch provides a welcome respite from the stress of medical visits, and treatment regimens. Many women report a sense of peace in the spirit through the support of this comforting modality.


Psychotherapy treats a wide range of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression and adjustment to major life challenges. Working with a trained and licensed psychotherapist can help clients who seek help in adjusting to life changes, increasing self-esteem and self-care, and improving their relationships and communication.

It is appropriate for people of all ages who are interested in finding relief from emotional distress. Talking with a therapist helps people identify what is troubling them, examine their emotional reactions and behaviors, and learn strategies to cope with problems.

For participants in the Women and Cancer Program, psychotherapy sessions are tailored to each client’s needs and include:

  • A safe space to process the emotional impact of having cancer
  • Strategies to manage stress, fear, anger or worry
  • Exploration of the connection between physical health and mood
  • Assistance with problem-solving and
  • Increasing sense of connectedness and support

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