Used for countless years in China, acupressure applies the exact same principles as acupuncture to promote relaxation and health and to alleviate disease. In some cases called pressure acupuncture, acupressure is often thought of as merely acupuncture without the needles. But exactly what is acupressure and how does it work?
What Is the Theory Behind Acupressure?
Acupressure is just one of a variety of Asian bodywork therapies (ABT) with roots in standard Chinese medicine (TCM). Examples of other Asian bodywork therapies are medical qigong and Tuina. Shiatsu is a Japanese kind of acupressure.
Traditional Chinese medical theory describes unique acupoints, or acupressure points, that lie along meridians, or channels, in your body. These are the very same energy meridians and acupoints as those targeted with acupuncture. It is thought that through these invisible channels streams vital energy– or a life force called qi (ch’i). It is likewise thought that these 12 major meridians link specific organs or networks of organs, arranging a system of communication throughout your body. The meridians start at your fingertips, link to your brain, and then connect to an organ connected with a certain meridian.
According to this theory, when among these meridians is blocked or out of balance, disease can happen. Acupressure and acupuncture are amongst the kinds of TCM that are believed to assist bring back balance.
Do Acupressure Really Works?
Acupressure professionals use their fingers, palms, elbows or feet, or unique devices to use pressure to acupoints on the body’s meridians. Sometimes, acupressure also includes stretching or acupressure massage, along with other approaches.
During an acupressure session, you lie totally clothed on a soft massage table. The specialist carefully presses on acupressure points on your body. A session typically lasts about one hour. You might require several sessions for the very best outcomes.
The goal of acupressure or other types of Asian bodywork is to bring back health and balance to the body’s channels of energy and to control opposing forces of yin (negative energy) and yang (favorable energy). Some advocates assert acupressure not just deals with the energy fields and body however also the mind, emotions, and spirit. Some even believe that therapists can transfer the vital energy (external qi) to another individual.
Not all Western professionals believe that this is possible and even that these meridians exist. Instead, they associate any result in other elements, such as alleviated muscle tension, improved blood circulation, or stimulation of endorphins, which are natural pain relievers.
What Are Common Acupuncture Points?
There are actually hundreds of acupuncture points on the body– a lot of to name. Here are 3 that are frequently used by acupuncturists and acupressure practitioners:
- Big intestine 4 (LI 4): This is in the soft, fleshy web between your thumb and forefinger.
- Liver 3 (LR-3): This remains in the soft flesh that sits in between your huge and 2nd toes. It’s an area just like LI 4.
- Spleen 6 (SP-6): This is about 3 finger widths above your inner anklebone. It is a tender area of the lower calf muscle.
Acupressure Massage Definition and Benefits
Research into the health benefits of acupressure is in its infancy. Lots of patient reports support its usage for a variety of health issues. More well-designed research is required, though. Here are a few illness that appear to improve with acupressure:
Queasiness. Several researches support the use of wrist acupressure to avoid and get rid of nausea and vomiting:
- After surgery
- During spinal anesthesia
- After chemotherapy
- From nausea
- Connected to pregnancy
The PC 6 acupressure point is located in the groove between the two large tendons on the within the wrist that begin at the base of the palm. There are unique wristbands that are sold over the counter. These press on comparable pressure points and work for some individuals.
Cancer. In addition to relieving nausea right after chemotherapy, there are individual reports that acupressure also helps in reducing stress, enhance energy levels, ease pain, and decrease other symptoms of cancer or its treatments. More research is needed to confirm these reports.
Pain. Some preliminary proof recommends that acupressure might assist with low back pain, postoperative pain, or headache. Pain from other conditions might benefit, as well. To relieve headache, the LI 4 pressure point is sometimes tried.
Arthritis. Some studies suggest that acupressure releases endorphins and promotes anti-inflammatory results, helping with arthritis.
Depression and anxiety. More than one study suggests that tiredness and state of mind might improve from making use of acupressure. Much better developed trials are had to make certain.
Are There Any Precautions With Acupressure?
In basic, acupressure is extremely safe. If you have cancer, arthritis, heart disease, or a chronic condition, make sure to have a discussion with your doctor before trying any therapy that includes moving joints and muscles, such as acupressure. And, make certain your acupressure practitioner is accredited and certified.
Deep tissue work such as acupressure needs to be avoided if any of the following conditions apply:
- The treatment remains in the area of a malignant growth or if the cancer has infected bones
- You have rheumatoid arthritis, a back injury, or a bone disease that could be worsened by physical control
- You have varicose veins
- You are pregnant (because certain points can induce contractions).