Whenever I see advertisements for herbal medicine, gemstone healing and magnetic treatments I can’t help but feel a tug of curiosity. I know that such forms of complementary therapy are offering non-specific results at best and expensive placebos at worst but there’s still a part of me that wonders “what if it works?”. Perhaps the key here is that I’m not just wondering “what if it works?” but “what if it works for me. I get the feeling that the human race are crazy gamblers, which must have had a hand in our success as a species but it amazes me when I can be so (for lack of a better phrase) tempted.

Do We Make Complementary Therapies Work Through Will Power?

I used to have a rune set, one of those things that young girls use to tell each others fortunes. After a while I realised that the readings always worked because my friends were falling over themselves to fill in the blanks. Give a human a vague message and their powers of interpretation will do the rest.

There’s also the fact that the placebo effect is staggeringly strong, meaning that if you can incite it then you are more likely to feel well, no matter what you did. Sugar pills are effective at treating any number of illnesses and salt water injections are better still, all with no active ingredients to work upon the body. The more I look into the placebo effect (especially in relation to my own mental illness), the more I realise how little we still understand the functions of our own minds.

So how do these complementary therapies work? Well, according to this site gemstone therapy is about the patterns and resonance in each stone. Attuning it with our own energy patterns allows for health benefits derived from these unions. I’ve had to reference back to that page about five times just whilst writing that last sentence and I’m still clueless. For once, biology books are easier for me to follow.

Funnily enough though, I own a lot of the gems that they mention. In fact, some have been my favourite items of jewellery for years. Have I been self treating myself and not even noticed? I thought I’d have a quick look online for some of the healing properties my own jewellery apparently boasts. It was also a great excuse to check out some cute jewellery and I’m always happy to window shop!

Snow Obsidian

Snow Obsidian JewelleryApparently it’s good for muscle cramps and effective with detoxifying the body. I have a pair of snow obsidian earrings. Or, more precisely, I had a pair. Now I have one, which I wear occasionally in my own mismatched style. Does this mean I’ve been treating one half of my body, or did I offset the effects with another gemstone option upon the other lobe? Perhaps I should go jogging with them, get ahead of the cramp before it hits!

Snow obsidian is somewhat rare when it comes to jewellery but there are lots of other obsidian variants to choose from online.


Amethyst JewelleryI was (and still am) a big fan of purple jewellery growing up. Perhaps because purple offered the right level of feminine but not as “girly” as I considered pink to be. I had several silver pendants with amethyst gems, which is also apparently a good way to boost healing properties of gems (man, I did everything right!). Amethysts are supposed to help with headaches, blood and breathing. For an anemic teen with breathing issues but who’d never had a headache in her life, perhaps only one aspect was effective for me?

The picture above is from Fresh Purple and they’ve got loads of amethyst jewellery to choose from.


Jade NecklaceMy family have a deep seated love of Chinese culture, ever since my parents honeymooned there in the 80’s. This means we have several jade items around the house and a fondness for jade jewellery. Apparently this has protected our kidneys and nervous system as well because no one in my family has had any issues relating to those systems. Mission accomplished!

If you’re interested in jade jewellery then Gemondo has you covered.

I know I’m being glib about gemstone healing here but it’s not my intention to be offensive. I consider myself skeptical about such treatments because they seem to require belief, which leads me back to my consideration of placebo effects. I don’t have to believe in my antibiotics or pain killers, they do their job no matter what I think of them.

When a treatment depends on my faith in it working then I can’t help but think that really, my brain is the one doing all the work getting me better, the prop that facilitates that change doesn’t matter so much at all.

That said, if I do feel better by the end of it, who’s to say that that’s a bad thing? Do the ends justify the unscientific means?


Kayleigh Herbertson

Kayleigh is a 20 something year old woman who is currently living with a chronic pain condition, a skin condition and a mental health condition. Juggling these three can be something of a challenge but she's always ready to take things on head first!

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