Posts Tagged ‘cramps’
Jun 5, 2012
Constipation is an issue that I often treat in my NYC acupuncture clinic.
I always teach my patients this simple two-step acupressure routine for relieving constipation to supplement the acupuncture treatment.
Rub belly in clockwise circle
Rubbing your abdomen will help wake up your digestive system. Place your whole palm on the abdomen and apply even pressure. Not so much pressure that it is painful but you should feel your hand.
Rub your belly in a big clockwise circle touching the edge of the ribs and the top of the pelvis. Do this motion for 30 seconds. You can also casually rub your belly in this way during your relaxation time, listening to music, or before you go to sleep.
Sheng Ju Xu- Stomach 37
Stomach 37 is a very important acupuncture point for constipation. When palpating you may notice that it is often tender during episodes of constipation.
Acupressure Point Location: Stomach 37 is located 3 cun below the acupressure point Stomach 36.
First locate the tibial tuberosity, a bump just below the knee. Place your hand just below the tibial tuberosity with the index finger touching the bottom of the tuberosity. Stomach 37 is located level with the pinky finger just to the outside of the shin bone when your hand is in this position.
How to massage
First press on the acupressure point then rub in a circle. You can apply pressure which can help. Pressing very hard may cause a small bruise.
Rub this acupressure point twice a day for 30 seconds.
Mar 16, 2012
Everyone knows that seasonal allergies are painful and uncomfortable causing runny nose, sneezing, sinus pain, fatigue, watery eyes, and other debilitating symptoms. Allergies also effect your productivity at work and school and may be linked to depression, insomnia, and anxiety.(1)
Acupuncture offers an effective drug free treatment so you can smell the flowers.
Acupuncture for Allergies
Acupuncture is different than taking a pill. Acupuncture helps to reduce pain and inflammation. But rather than adding a medication that will temporarily block a receptor, histamine in the case of allergies, acupuncture works to regulate the body’s functioning. The goals is for long term improvement from the acupuncture treatment.
The idea is that acupuncture helps to reset the body and remind it how to be healthy. As balance is achieved, your body is able to maintain the healthy state without medications. So instead of simply suppressing the body’s reaction, it works to correct the root cause of the problem.
Acupuncture’s Understanding of Allergies
Acupuncture has its own view of the body and health. Acupuncturists look for an imbalance that is causing of allergies.
Qi (pronounced chee) is the body’s vital energy, it gives you the power to work, study, exercise, and fight illness. In acupuncture, the cause of allergies is often a qi imbalance. There are two major qi imbalances. The most common one for allergies is when there is too little qi, we call this a qi vacuity. When your qi is vacuous, you feel tired, can get colds easily, may have poor digestion, coughing, wheezing, and possibly asthma. The acupuncture and herbs work to boost up your qi, giving you more energy and protecting you from allergies.
The second imbalance is called qi stagnation. This is when your qi does not circulate well. This is often caused by stress, and can cause pain, headaches, menstrual cramps, and in some cases, bring on asthma attacks.
Inflammation is a cause of allergies and chronic sinus pain. In acupuncture, this is often related to an imbalance called heat. Heat can cause dryness, irritation, and pain. This is often common in chronic sinusitis.
The Acupuncture Treatment
An effective acupuncture treatment is based upon a specific and accurate diagnosis of the imbalance. Chinese herbs can also be helpful in reducing inflammation and sinus pain. By targeting the exact root of the condition leads to the most successful treatment.
I combine acupressure, Chinese medicine massage, with the acupuncture to create greater results and a stronger sense of relaxation. Usually people will feel some relief after only a few weekly visits.
How Acupuncture Works
Acupuncture helps to reduce inflammation and increase circulation. Acupuncture also helps to regulate the brain to reduce pain, so it is also possible that is another way it works to help regulate the immune response to allergies (2).
1. Marcus MB. Seasonal allergies could spark depression, fatigue. USA Today. 3/18/2008.
2. Napadow V, Ahn A, Longhurst J, et.al. The Status and Future of Acupuncture Mechanism Research. J Altern Complement Med. 2008 September; 14(7): 861–869.
written by: Joseph Alban, L.Ac.
Late Edited: 2/22/2012
Jan 9, 2012
The Meaning of Zhen Jiu ( 针灸)
Acupuncture is not just acupuncture. In fact, the word for acupuncture in Chinese, Zhen Jiu, actually translates to “acupuncture and moxibustion” which shows how central moxibustion is within acupuncture.
Moxibustion is the warming of acupuncture points or needles. Most often, this is done through burning an herb called mugwort. It can also be done with heat lamps as well as herbal lotions.
In my office, we use smokeless moxibustion because it is treated and does not create much smoke.
How does Moxibustion work?
Just like with acupuncture, moxibustion focuses on correcting the underlying imbalance in the body.
Because it is warming, generally moxibustion is used when there is cold in the body. Moxibustion can help to warm the body and add qi as well. The warmth also helps to increase circulation.
Boosting the Qi
There is a tradition that one can use moxibustion on the acupuncture point Stomach 36 for 100 consecutive days in order to boost the body’s qi. I think this therapy is particularly effective for those with poor digestion or asthma due to low energy.
Jun 2, 2010
Acupressure can be easily used to reduce menstrual cramps and symptoms of PMS. Menstrual cramps are mostly related to qi stagnation, that is, when qi is not flowing freely in the body. This is most often caused by stress, worry, overwork, or sometimes people can be prone to stagnation.
Chinese medicine tradition states “ When there is movement there is no pain, when qi stops there is pain.” Qi must always circulate through the body to be healthy. Acupressure relieves pain by moving qi in a channel. You can massage these points to relieve the pain and cramping. But, you can also rub them daily to help prevent cramping as well as improve your ability to produce qi.
Spleen 6 (Sp 6) is a very important point to reduce menstrual cramps, regulate the menstrual cycle, treat pain, and improve energy. This is because the point strongly moves the qi and blood. It also helps to produce qi. So stimulating this point will help improve digestion, energy, and reduce pain and can be used to prevent or treat acute cramps.
Sp 6 is located on the inside of your calf. The point is on the center line of your leg. Place your hand on the top of the inner ankle bone. The point is the same distance as the width of you 4 fingers put together.
Caution: Because Sp 6 strongly moves the qi, it should not be used during pregnancy.
Acupressure vs. Acupuncture
Acupressure and acupuncture share the same theory. But acupuncture has a stronger effect because it is more powerful to move stagnated qi and can treat imbalances deeper in the body. Acupressure is very practical, because you can do it for yourself. Women who experience severe cramps and PMS may require acupuncture.
Acupuncture and acupressure work well in combination, I often tell my patients to massage these points in addition to the acupuncture treatment. Overtime, the effects of both acupuncture and acupressure are cumulative and can lead to long lasting results.
Combining acupressure points
Rub this point in combination with Stomach 36 on a daily basis to help to reduce cramps and improve digestion.