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First Aid

Reiki Contraindications

Can Reiki be harmful?

This is a grey area for many. Some say it is impossible for Reiki to do harm, and there are others who say it can be used to harm someone intentionally. I tend to believe that Reiki itself cannot cause harm, but the intention of the practitioner, or lack of due diligence, can lead to unintended consequences.


There are two main types of diabetes; funnily enough called Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 is the one you need to be extremely careful of, as it is this one where the sufferer needs to take in insulin each day to make up for the fact that their body just doesn’t make enough by itself.

Now, from a first glance, this may seem to be an ideal opportunity for our newly fledged Reiki healer to practice on their long-suffering family member; but, what if the treatment actually works? I mean ‘ANY’ Reiki treatment. Even if you are not intending to treat the diabetes itself, as experience grows, any Reiki practitioner will tell you that sometimes a treatment will improve another condition that they were unaware of.

So our new therapist decides to treat their diabetic mother’s bunion. Forty minutes later the bunion is feeling much less painful and looks less inflamed. One very grateful mother goes to bed, unaware that her pancreas has also been affected and is now starting to produce some insulin. Over the next day or so, natural insulin production slowly grows and, unfortunately, whilst coming home from a restaurant meal one night, she forgets to test her blood sugar level, and, purely out of habit, injects herself. Twenty-four hours later she is dead from an insulin overdose.

Now, Reiki did not cause the overdose, the mother, being human, did. You cannot ever trust your patient, whoever they are, to correctly and regularly check the state of their own conditions. People have died from insulin overdoses after Reiki treatments. This is why most client record forms have questions regarding certain conditions and the client is asked to sign it prior to initial therapy so that the practitioner cannot be sued for negligence later.

With Type 1 Diabetes, Reiki can and does help heal the issue, but you cannot guarantee the patient will check their blood regularly, and before each injection, no matter how much they protest that they will. A death on your conscience will almost certainly dent your faith in the therapy, and quite possibly put you out of business.


With any mental infirmity the patient must be instructed to consult their G.P. prior to initial treatment. This is mainly to make their G.P. aware that their patient could show an increased recovery rate leading to more regular monitoring of the dosage level of any medication they are on. However, if the client is Schizophrenic it is best to avoid any Reiki treatment. The energies imparted through Reiki can easily cause the Schizophrenic symptoms to increase, albeit short term, and this can be very unpleasant for the sufferer. Increased hallucinations occurring during a Reiki session are very likely to cause intense distress as well, so, purely for the clients sake, refuse any and all Reiki treatments to anyone suffering this condition.

Pace Maker

Avoid treating anyone with a pace maker. Reiki energies have a habit of either speeding the pace maker up, or slowing them down. Not a very comfortable experience for therapist or client, and having to have one of your patients whisked off to A&E with the blue lights flashing, is not a good advert for your practice.

Note that Reiki does not cause harm to the client here, but has an undesirable effect on an unnatural implant in the human body. I guess this could be put down to semantics but no physical, mental or spiritual harm is being done directly to the client.


So long as the mum-to-be is past their first trimester, treating a pregnant woman should have no ill effects. Careful monitoring of the baby should be made though and any sign of discomfort should see the treatment session finish early.

During the first trimester, the unborn child is always at a higher risk of complications and it is just best policy to avoid treatments like Reiki during this time.

Hearing aids

Reiki can, and does, cause howling or feedback in hearing aids. It’s a bit like Jimi Hendrix in the 1960’s. Great when your hyped up and at a live show, but when you’re trying to relax and have your back ache relieved, it can be a bit of a shock. To avoid this, the client should be asked to remove any hearing aid prior to treatment, and if they of very limited hearing, some form of sign be agreed prior to commencement so that the client can be advised when the treatment is complete.


Reiki will always have at least one of two effects:

  • No initial discernible effect to the client (although beneficial, the effect may be on a spiritual or energetic level which takes time to manifest)
  • A beneficial effect on the condition, whether the treated symptom or another (the universe does not always take the route we expect or think best).

The contra-indications listed above are not examples of ‘Reiki doing harm’, but more to do with sensible precautions. The Schizophrenic example could be considered harmful, but the Reiki treatment, if continued, would end up being beneficial; it is just the nature of the condition that the client is already in a higher state of energetic agitation, and the Reiki energies could exacerbate this in the initial stages. With the clients already agitated mindset, it is highly unlikely they will be willing to go through with the treatment anyway after having the symptoms momentarily amplified, so it is best to avoid the issue and recommend a different form of therapy.

Can Reiki be used to intentionally harm someone? I doubt it (unless you know the person in your sights has one of the above conditions and you force Reiki energy on them). I have not heard of any examples of this and would never try to find out myself. Anyone trying to do so will only be harming themselves spiritually and Reiki attunements have a distinct habit of slowly altering the practitioners mindset; so doing harm to someone else is not something they wish to do.

Source by Andrew J Cook

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