Colour therapy, also known as chromotherapy, is a holistic, gentle, non-invasive complementary therapy that can be used to help with a wide range of issues. Colour therapy goes far deeper than an hour session with a practitioner. A good practitioner will give you the tools and knowledge to help you incorporate colour therapy into your every day life. Colour therapy is safe to use alone or alongside other therapies whether orthodox medicine or another complementary therapy. It is important to be aware however that a complementary therapy is just that. Whilst there is the potential for many postives from complementary therapy, it should never be considered as an alternative to professional medical advice or treatment. If you are taking any medication, you should always consult your doctor before you stop taking it.
Colour and light has been used for thousands of years to enhance well being. The history of colour therapy has its roots in many ancient civilizations and cultures in Eygpt, Greece and China, where these natural methods were used in their healing practices. Practices included using the colours of nature in their surroundings (i.e. sky blue, grass green), painting rooms in certain colours with the aim of treating certain conditions and dedicated crystal rooms that used crystals to refract the sunlight that shined through. In more recent times in the early 20th century, Carl Jung, a renowned psychiatrist, encouraged his patients to use colour because he felt this would help them express some of the deeper parts of their psyche.
The science behind colour therapy
Light is the name for a range of electromagnetic radiation that can be detected by the human eye. Light is a beam of energy that moves in a wave, and light waves come in many sizes. Visible wavelengths of light range from 400 to 700 nanometres. Colour is simply light of varying wavelengths, and therefore each colour has its own particular wavelength and energy. We are aware of the effects of non-visible light on humans (UV light, infra red, x-rays etc), so it makes sense that visible light also affect us.
Colour is not just absorbed by the eyes, it is also absorbed by the skin and our own magnetic energy field known as the aura. Each colour falls into a specific frequency and vibration, and that can be used to affect the energy and frequencies within our bodies on all levels including physical, spiritual and emotional. It is thought that certain colours entering the body can activate hormones causing chemical reactions within the body, which then influence emotions and can also enable the body to heal. We all know that the sun is a source of light and this can have a very profound effect on us. You may have heard of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which can cause people to suffer a form of depression during the winter months where the amount of daylight is limited, and which is treated by using special ‘daylight’ lamps.
Colour therapy in practice
It is believed that the colour choices you make reflect a deeper meaning about your personality traits. For example, introverts may lean towards blues and extroverts are more likely to choose a stronger more vibrant colour such as red. Your colour choices are often a reflection of how you are feeling at that moment, we often wear light colours to feel cooler, brighter colours to cheer us up. Wearing certain colors can also influence your reactions to certain situations, for example red for confidence. Noting strong colour preferences or aversions can prove useful in exploring possible problems and blockages. Working with the appropriate colours can then help to re-balance the body emotionally, physically and spiritually.
Colours are known to have an effect on emotions. The colour blue can have a calming effect and can result in lowering blood pressure, whereas the colour red might have the opposite effect and can enrage anger. Green imay be used to relax people who are emotionally unbalanced whereas yellow may be used in treating depression.
The body has seven main chakras and for health and wellbeing the energies of these chakra must be balanced (more information on the Chakras can be found here). The energies of the seven colours of the spectrum resonate with the chakras as so: base chakra red, sacral chakra orange, solar plexus chakra yellow, heart chakra green, throat chakra blue, brow (third eye) chakra indigo, crown chakra violet. Therefore we can use colour therapy to re-balance and stimulate our chakras and these energies by applying the appropriate colour to the body.
What happens in a Colour Therapy Session?
In the first art of the session, the practitioner will undertake an assessment. They should ask you to complete a general health questionnaire along with some questions on your current uses of and attitudes to colour. This, maybe along with pendulum dowsing, will be used to form a treatment plan.
Colour therapy treatment is very gentle and the colours used will be selected based on the information that the practitioner has gathered during the assessment. Colour therapy sessions are generally performed with the client fully clothed.
Treatment techniques and methods may include may include: directing colour / light on to different parts of the body, working with the chakras, using coloured silk scaves, use of crystals, colour breathing techniques, colour visualisation techniques, colour cards, solarised essences / water, advice on wearing certain colours, colour in the home and eating different coloured foods.
How long does an appointment last?
Typically sessions can take anywhere between 40mins to 1 & ½ hours, which includes the assessment time. The length of the appointment will vary depending on whether any other holistic therapies are incorporated into the treatment, for example crystals, reiki.
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