Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Giving emergency nurses aromatherapy massages with music dramatically reduced stress levels

19.09.2007
Nurses working in an accident and emergency department reported that their anxiety levels fell dramatically when they were given aromatherapy massages while listening to music, according to research in the September issue of the UK-based Journal of Clinical Nursing.

Two 12-week alternative therapy sessions were provided over the course of a year. 86 nurses participated in the study, with 39 taking part in both the summer and winter sessions.

Researchers found that 60 per cent of the staff - 54 per cent in summer and 65 per cent in winter - suffered from moderate to extreme anxiety.

But this fell to just eight per cent, regardless of the season, once staff had received 15-minute aromatherapy massages while listening to relaxing new-age music.

The study also sought to examine whether there were any seasonal differences in stress levels.

“There’s always been a perception that staff feel more stressed in the winter months – when they deal with more serious respiratory and cardiac cases – and the stress levels we recorded would seem to support this” says Marie Cooke, Deputy Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Griffith University, Queensland, Australia.

“But when we analysed the workload figures and case distribution we found little difference between winter and summer patient levels during the study periods. Staff dealt with just over 10,700 patients each season and the number of deaths and the percentage of patients in each triage category (which determines how quickly people need to be seen) was fairly consistent between the seasons.

“However the fact remains that providing alternative therapy was more effective during the winter months. During both study periods the number of staff feeling stressed fell to eight per cent, but there was a greater reduction in winter, when the number fell from 65 per cent, than in the summer, when the pre-massage score was 54 per cent.

As well as measuring staff’s anxiety levels before and after aromatherapy massages, 68 responded to a detailed occupational stress survey – 33 who had taken part in the summer sessions and 35 from the winter sessions.

The survey - which included measuring occupational stress factors such as pressure of responsibility, quality concerns, role conflict, job satisfaction and self esteem - was carried out before and after each 12-week period.

It revealed that occupational stress levels were consistent between the summer and winter trials.

Staff who took part in the study had an average age of 38 and had spent just over seven years working in the emergency department. 80 per cent were female and 60 per cent worked full time. Comparisons with national statistics showed that the sample had more male and full-time staff than national averages.

Massages were provided by a qualified therapist who sprayed aromatherapy mist above the heads of participants and then massaged their shoulders, mid back, neck, scalp forehead and temples, while they listened to relaxing music on headphones.

Participants, who were seated in a quiet room, were able to choose the essential oil used, from rose, lavender, lime or ocean breeze – a combination of lavender, ylang ylang, bergamot and patchouli.

Sixteen massages were carried out over a two-day work period each week, with the names of all staff working those days put into an envelope and selected at random.

“There is scope for a lot more research into this area” concludes Dr Cooke.
“We would be interested to see if different types of alternative therapy produced different results and whether factors such as age, gender and health status had any effect on the outcome.

“But what is clear from this study is that providing aromatherapy massage had an immediate and dramatic effect on staff who traditionally suffer high anxiety levels because of the nature of their work.

“Introducing stress reduction strategies in the workplace could be a valuable tool for employers who are keen to tackle anxiety levels in high pressure roles and increase job satisfaction.”

Annette Whibley | alfa
Further information:
http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/jcn

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>