Sustaining the cocoon: the emotional inoculation produced by complementary therapies in palliative care.

Abstract:

:The aim of this study is to explore, from a medical sociological perspective, the use of complementary therapies by palliative care nurses. This paper shows how the conceptual vocabulary developed by Giddens [Giddens A. (1990) The Consequences of Modernity. Polity Press, Cambridge; Giddens A. (1991) Modernity and Self-Identity. Polity Press, Cambridge] relating to trust, ontological security, existential anxiety and the importance of protective cocoons, facilitates understanding of the use of complementary therapies in palliative care. This is a qualitative study based on semi-structured interviews. During analysis both thematic content and narrative form of the interviews are scrutinized. Analysis shows that the concepts Giddens developed enable the use of complementary therapies to be seen in new ways. In particular, they facilitate the application of a complementary therapy being seen as an emotional inoculation. Similar to the emotional inoculation Giddens speaks about, an infant receiving from its caretaker in childhood which enables a child to have a protective cocoon which it carries round with it throughout life and can draw on when faced with difficulties, the application of a complementary therapy in palliative care can be seen in terms of a booster injection being received by an adult, from their professional caretaker, in time of particular need. This injection sustains a person's protective cocoon at a time of vulnerability.

authors

Garnett M

doi

10.1046/j.1365-2354.2003.00381.x

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2003-06-01 00:00:00

pages

129-36

issue

2

eissn

0961-5423

issn

1365-2354

pii

381

journal_volume

12

pub_type

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