Healing Crystals: pseudoscience or alternative medicine?
Healing crystals were originally used in ancient Chinese cultures and some South American cultures, but have been adopted as an alternative medicine. The principle behind healing crystals is that the crystals are placed on areas of the body, placed on the area of the body's "chakras" to promote healing and good health. However, there is still some debate into whether healing crystals are actually effective, or just a form of pseudoscience with no real benefit.
How do healing crystals work?
Different coloured healing crystals are placed on the body to corresponding "chakra" lines. Certain crystals are intended to have different effects - for example, some Eastern cultures historically considered emerald crystals to increase memory and intellect when placed on the correct chakra. In Western cultures, it is not considered an 'alternative' medication, but is not practicied by individuals who are native to cultures who have tradtionally practiced with healing crystals.
Does crystaling healing work?
Unfortunately, healing crystals are not a peer reviewed practice. Many leading organisations have disregarded the use of crystal healing as a 'pseudoscience', with no evidence to support its benefits.
However, since healing crystals have been used historically, there have been some consideration into whether healing crystals promote a 'placebo' effect; where a person believes the crystals are promoting good health, and therefore positive changes occur in the body.
In some cases, problems such as stress or conditions induced by certain negative thinking can be altered when a person's thought pattern changes. Although the crystals may not actually create a physical change, the placebo effective could encourage a patient to think positively and promote emotional healing which could reflect their physical state. If a person truly believes the crystal has healing effects, the placebo effect has been attributed to causing minor improvements in certain conditions.
Use of crystal healing techniques
If you do decide to use healing crystals, note that the practice is not peer reviewed and highly disputed as an effective treatment (aside from its placebo effect) by the scientific community. You should never replace prescription medication with alternative medication without specific advise from a qualified medical professional, and should not rely on healing crystals above any recommended medication regardless of the condition you have.