The Hoku point, widely used in acupuncture and acupressure to relieve pain,
is located on the hand. Acupuncture and acupressure are key elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, illness and pain are seen as the result of interrupted flow of qi (energy). As with acupuncture, the aim of acupressure is to restore and balance the flow of qi through the body.
Acupressure/acupuncture points are places influenced to regulate body functions in addition to relieving pain. Various points on the body are used to address various pains.
Finding and Using the Hoku Point
The “Hoku point” (also called LI4 because it is the 4th point on the Large
Intestine meridian) is good for relieving many kinds of pain (as well as other
It is located on the back of the hand, in the webbing where the thumb and
index finger meet. Find the exact point by bringing your thumb and index
finger together. The muscle will bulge a little--that's the spot.
It can relieve headaches
, as well as joint and muscle pain anywhere in the
Squeeze LI4 by putting your thumb on the point, and your index finger on the
palm side of your hand. You can hold for up to a few minutes, or until you
feel relief. You should press it firmly.
Michael Reed Gach in his book Acupressure's Potent Points
that while you are pressing LI4, you also move the joint nearest the part of
your body that's in pain. For example, if your upper calf is in pain, you
would bend and unbend your knee. This is a great book, by the way. Important: Do not use LI4 if you are pregnant.If your pain is intense or persistent, you should of course seek the
counsel of a qualified medical practitioner.
Acupressure relieves pain and common complaints, how it works as a beauty treatment, for better sex, back care, healing trauma and emotional pain, Acupressure methods, energy work, and more.
Kimberly Adams was training for her first triathlon when she felt a sudden and excruciating pain in her neck
. A social worker and mom of two, she suspected that toting around her 7-month-old daughter might have contributed to the injury. Adams saw a doctor, who ruled out a pinched nerve and sent her to a chiropractor. An x-ray showed nothing structurally wrong and the chiropractor made some adjustments, but the pain persisted.
Desperate, Adams, 33, turned to acupuncture
. And on her third visit — after 3 weeks of unremitting pain — something radical happened. The acupuncturist wiggled a needle in Adams's calf while massaging the painful muscle in her neck; the neck muscle began to relax, and 40 seconds later it felt better. "Literally the next day, the pain was completely gone," Adams says.
Adams, of Scotch Plains, New Jersey, has been pain-free since May and recently completed her second triathlon
. Researchers don't quite understand how a needle inserted into one body part can heal another, and some doctors consider the practice at best a nebulous, power-of-positive-thinking sort of thing. But for the million Americans who are treated annually with acupuncture, recent clinical studies have shown that the practice affects the body in measurable ways — reducing blood pressure, for example, and increasing the circulation of endorphins, natural pain-relieving chemicals
In 1997 the National Institutes of Health approved acupuncture for certain kinds of nausea and pain
and listed 11 other conditions, including addiction, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome
, and menstrual cramps
, for which it showed potential. Scores of new studies are published each year, evaluating acupuncture's effectiveness in treating everything from Parkinson's disease to depression. And thousands of physicians have incorporated acupuncture into their practices — the country's most prestigious training program, at UCLA's medical school, has graduated 5,000 doctor-acupuncturists over the past 2 decades.
Acupuncture is based on the traditional Chinese teaching that energy, or qi (pronounced "chee"), courses through the body along channels called meridians; illness occurs when that flow is disrupted. Scientists are starting to identify some of the physiological mechanisms at work, and there's evidence that the insertion of needles into designated acupuncture points speeds the conduction of electromagnetic signals within the body. These signals may increase the flow of endorphins and other pain-relieving chemicals, as well as immune system cells, which aid healing. But for the patients it has helped, the "why" and "how" it works don't matter as much as the fact that it does.
Acupressure and Acupuncture points anatomical location, name, reference numbers, home study materials, and meridian functions.
Nicole Cashman, 33, who heads her own public relations firm in Philadelphia and New York City, had suffered from allergies all her life. But when she fell for a man with two dogs, her problem escalated from annoyance to life crisis. After just minutes at her boyfriend's house, itchy eyes and other painful symptoms would set in, forcing her to flee. An allergy doctor had her try Zyrtec pills, steroidal eye drops, and a prescription nasal spray. The medications quelled her symptoms, but left her with dry eyes, headaches, and intense drowsiness. "I was like a walking zombie," she says.
Cashman's mom, a pediatric nurse practitioner, suggested she try acupuncture. Though nervous, Cashman began seeing Marshall Sager, D.O., for 20-minute sessions every 2 weeks. He treated her with needles in her face, shins, hands, chest, and other parts of her body. Within a month she was off her meds and sleeping over at her boyfriend's. "I've had amazing results," says Cashman, who has been allergy- and medication- free for more than 2 years and now sees Dr. Sager for semi- annual tune-ups. "I consider myself completely cured."
I've changed into a flimsy gown and am waiting for the acupuncturist, Phillip Shinnick, Ph.D., to return. I'm here mostly because of frequent sinus infections, but a couple of other things are on my mind — like my jaw, which is tight from grinding my teeth at night, and, given the fact that I've been trying to get pregnant for 7 months, acupuncture's reputation for increasing fertility. The room is casually disheveled, an odd melding of doctor's office (sink and white-tiled floor) and massage studio (Buddha wall art and padded examining table).
origins of Acupressure and Acupuncture as an ancient Chinese healing art. – how Acupressure and Acupuncture developed in China out of instinct to self-care techniques for relieving stress.
Shinnick isn't a doctor, but he has studied physiology intensely. (Actually, he's done a lot of things intensely. He set the world record in 1963 for the long jump and competed in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.) He was a history and sociology professor at Rutgers when a car accident led him to seek physical therapy at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Doctors there sensed his natural gift for healing and suggested he seek training; he went on to study with several top physicians with expertise in Eastern medicine. From there he proceeded to teach acupuncture to doctors at New York Medical College.
Based on my reading, I'm expecting this first session to start with a medical history and then move in a less traditional direction, with him feeling my pulse, examining my tongue, and asking questions like, "What three adjectives would you use to describe yourself?" In traditional Chinese medicine, the world consists of five elements: fire, water, earth, wood, and metal. One or two elements are dominant in each of us, and they're considered a fair predictor of both health issues and psychological tendencies. "It's the feng shui of the body," explains Ann Cotter, M.D., a physician and acupuncturist at Morristown Memorial Hospital in Morristown, New Jersey. A "fire" person and a "metal" person, though they have the same complaint, are likely to receive needles in different places.
But Shinnick merely asks about my principal complaints and medical history, then palpates my whole body, stopping to make marks on a rough human outline he's sketched. I see him circle my shoulders, the left side of my lower back, my left thigh, and both calves. He's done Chinese medical typing, he says, but he finds it more efficient to examine a person's body; all the information he needs resides there. With a speed that would seem like impatience if he weren't being so attentive, he points out problems. My stomach and pancreas are in spasm. My right hip is locked, and it's pressing on my ovary. I have a scattering of tiny bumps on my cheeks. "There's congestion in these points," he says. "It's been this way for a long time."
His plan: Two needles in my lower back, two in my shoulders. Another in my abdomen, near my right hip. Tap-tap, tap-tap. I feel microsecond pinpricks, and in some spots, a numb, achy sensation.
Shinnick attaches clips to the needles and starts what looks like a car battery. I feel pulses of electricity alternating from one needle to the next. It feels odd but not uncomfortable, though my abdomen is visibly convulsing. Acupuncturists insert their thin needles, as many as a dozen at a time, into any of more than 300 points. Placement varies from one session to the next, in response to the patient's changing condition, and the practitioner may twist the needles or apply a weak electrical current. I lie there, a reposing pincushion, as Shinnick attends to patients in other rooms, and ponder his comments. At least one of them seems eerily on target. I've felt soreness in my lower-right abdomen for years, and in a recent test I had to make sure my fallopian tubes were clear, the right one was so constricted that the doctor had to force the dye solution through it.
Twenty minutes later Shinnick is back. The needles come out, snip-snap. My problems are neatly connected. "To me, everything fits," he says. My stomach is in knots, he explains, which is causing the outbreak on my face. The tension in my shoulders is keeping my sinuses in crisis and contributing to my jaw clenching. The blockage in my hip is hampering my ovary.
Guidance for using your fingertips on Acupressure points to relieve tension and pain: how long to hold points, how much pressure, eating, and how to release an acupressure point.
"I can completely eliminate all your tension," he says, "but you'll put it back." Unless, that is, I change my habits. He teaches me to breathe deeply into my stomach, relaxing my face on the exhale. "You need to practice these self-care techniques every single day from now until the day you die," he tells me. Most acupuncturists don't expect their clients to work so hard between sessions, but then again most treat patients regularly for weeks or months at a time. Shinnick believes two or three sessions are usually sufficient. "If it's going to work, it'll work fast," he says.
It's Looney Tunes," says Stephen Barrett, M.D., a retired psychiatrist who operates the Quackwatch Web site. "Meridians and qi are part of a delusional system." Dr. Barrett is referring to the vocabulary of acupuncture. Qi has no counterpart in Western medicine, and the meridians are not visible structures. "It's two worlds," Dr. Cotter says. "It's like learning a new language."
Western doctors treat problems that patients have; Eastern doctors treat patients who have problems. "Western medicine has a tendency to stop or alter processes. Just think about the names of our medicines: antibiotics, antihistamines, interferon," Dr. Sager says. "Acupuncture enhancesthe body's inherent ability to heal itself."
Since being validated by the NIH in 1997 for nausea and postoperative dental pain, acupuncture has shown promise for other ailments. In 2004 alone researchers documented its effectiveness in treating at least 25 medical problems. But none of those studies was sufficiently large or well designed to be definitive.
Doesn't mean the studies are wrong, only that they are not the final word. No company stands to profit from the revelation that acupuncture works, so it's hard to fund the large, costly studies that Western medicine requires for proof. In addition acupuncture isn't easily standardized the way Western treatments are decisions about needle placements change each session based on how the patient is feeling — so it's hard to design an objective study.
Victor Sierpina, M.D., a physician at the University of Texas Medical Branch and
author of a recent review of the medical literature on acupuncture, says acupuncture has been shown to work for at least two and osteoarthritis of the knee. A 2004 study of 570 patients published in the Annals of Internal Medicine showed that those who received acupuncture for 26 weeks scored 33 percent better on tests of pain and joint immobility than did patients who received sham acupuncture.
While definitive proof is scarce, anecdotal reports are not. Dr. Sierpina himself has successfully used acupuncture to help patients with migraine and tension headaches, back pain, irritable bowel syndrome, arthritis, tendinitis, neuralgia, allergies, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, asthma, and menstrual cramps. Other doctor-acupuncturists told me they've had results with acute ankle sprains, tennis elbow, male and female infertility, sinus infections, and the common cold. "I hear from patients weeks later, 'I still feel great.' That outcome is demonstrable. It's real," says Elizabeth Huntoon, M.D., a physical medicine and rehabilitation doctor at the Mayo Clinic who is also a certified acupuncturist. "If you have enough patients saying that to you, you start to believe you're doing something right."
Many patients undergo a series of visits over weeks or months before feeling better, or feel some improvement but not a total cure. And there are some who, though their symptoms seem treatable, don't respond to acupuncture at all. No one knows why; some attribute it to acupuncturists with insufficient skills or to individual body differences.
"It may be genetic — specific pain receptors may be diminished in some people," says Brian Berman of the University of Maryland school of medicine, who headed the knee osteoarthritis study. Nonresponders tend to be people who've been in pain for years; and advocates suspect that even they could be helped but that entrenched problems take longer and many patients give up too soon.
A nifty little $200 device by my bed tracks my hormone levels based on urine samples I provide each morning. For the past 7 months, it's been the same drill: a couple days of high fertility before and after ovulation, which for me happens several days earlier than the optimal day 14 or 15, followed by low fertility the rest of the month. But after I start acupuncture, things change. This month I register high fertility for 17 days straight. The downside: I don't ovulate. The upside: Something seems to be shifting inside me.
Discover ways Acupressure can enhance Massage Therapy & how Chinese Massage works. Learn more about Massage Therapy Points. Discusses how acupressure therapy, trigger points, and pressure points enhance Massage Therapy. Discover how these massage therapy points can be integrated with Massage Therapy practices for increased effectiveness for both the Massage client and Massage Therapist.
I can't help but think of Eliana Jacobs, 42, an acupuncture patient I'd interviewed. She'd had trouble conceiving her first child, but the second go-round was even worse. Over several years she had an ectopic pregnancy that cost her a fallopian tube and four in-vitro fertilization procedures at two top fertility clinics in New York City. The doctors found nothing wrong with her eggs, but they failed to develop into sturdy embryos. "After four IVF procedures, which are physically and mentally grueling, I had nothing to show for it," she says.
Jacobs went to an acupuncturist who specialized in fertility. She was told it could take 3 to 6 months of regular treatments to restore her body to equilibrium. Jacobs decided to give it a try, then do one last round of IVF. She went dutifully twice a week, though she felt no physical difference and had no idea whether acupuncture was working. Six months later though, she found she'd gotten pregnant on her own, and went on to have a second healthy girl.
Was Jacobs's experience mere coincidence? Hard to say. A 2002 German studyshowed promise for acupuncture in helping women undergoing IVF become pregnant.Eighty women were given acupuncture 25 minutes before and after embryo transfer; another 80 were not. The pregnancy rate of those who received acupuncture was 42.5 percent, as opposed to 26.3 percent for those who didn't.
Some of the most interesting research about how acupuncture works involves brain scans. In one of the first such studies, published in 1998 in aprestigious medical journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers needled subjects on the side of the foot in points that are thought to affect the eyes while taking images of their brains in an fMRI machine. The part of the brain associated with vision lit up, just as it did when a bright light was shone in the subjects' eyes. Needling in other parts of the foot did not cause the response.
Acupuncture seems to work best for problems that Western medicine struggles to treat — hot flashes, recurrent infections, back pain, and other chronic conditions that don't register on x-rays or blood tests — not extreme medical conditions. Advocates also point to the fact that acupuncture has virtually no side effects: a well-trained practitioner will use sterilized, disposable needles, eliminating the chance of infection. The worst that patients can expect is some bruising or a brief feeling of faintness. Hence practitioners say acupuncture is a good option when other treatments have failed — or when Western medicine has no answers.
Which is pretty much where I find myself right now. A blood test I recently took indicated that my chances of getting pregnant are low, but the doctor who ordered the test, a fertility specialist, had no remedy to suggest except to wait and take the test again, as results may vary from month to month. Meanwhile my current cycle, the second since I started acupuncture, is the best yet; this time I register high fertility early on, then ovulate on day 15 — the ideal scenario.
All means for me I don't yet know, but the changes in my body make me feel
certain that the acupuncture is doing something. Acupuncture doesn't work for
everybody all the time, but it clearly does work for some people some of the
time. And I hope I'll be one of them.
Read more at Women's Health: http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/acupuncture-to-relieve-pain?page=4#ixzz21rYNZw8U
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LI 4 Acupuncture Point – He Gu – Large Intestine Meridian
Some forms of acupuncture can be practiced anyone, not just by specialist. Whether for healing or as part of your health regime, you can do acupressure at home. But there are three hundreds sixty-five acupuncture points. Remembering where they are and how to use them is not easy, even for a trained acupuncturist.
I recently bought a three book set called “The Secrets of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Health Regime.” The author is Dr. Wu Guo Jong. He is a TCM doctor working in Beijing, China. In the book he mentioned using some acupuncture points as part of an everyday health regime. I think what he suggests is easy and useful for everybody, so I would like to share them with you.1. LI 4 Acupuncture Point – He Gu – Large Intestine MeridianEnglish Name: Union Valley
Location: On the dorsum(back) of the hand, approximately at the midpoint of the second metacarpal bone, in the belly of the first interosseus dorsalis muscle. (between your thumb and first finger)Contraindication: Do Not Needle If Pregnancy is known or suspected
Actions & Effects:
Releases the exterior for wind-cold or wind-heat syndromes
Strengthens the wei qi, improves immunity
Regulates the sweat glands, for excessive sweating tonify LI 4 then disperse KD 7 and vice versa.
Any problem on the face – sense organs, mouth, teeth, jaw, toothache, allergies, rhinitis, hay fever, acne, eye problems, etc.
Toothache, use both LI 4 & ST 44 – LI for the lower jaw & ST for the upper jaw.
Headache, especially frontal and/or sinus (yangming) area.
Influence the circulation of Qi and Blood – Use the four gates, LI 4 & LV 3 to strongly move the Qi and Blood in the body clearing stagnation and alleviating pain.
Promote labor or for retained placenta.Use your thumbs to press your He Gu point. Then, using medium force and speed, rub in tiny circles for two to three minutes.
2. PC 6 Acupuncture Point – Nei Guan – Pericardium Meridian
PC 6 Acupuncture Point – Nei Guan – Pericardium Meridian
English Name: Inner Pass
Location: On the anterior forearm (inner wrist), 2 cm superior to the transverse wrist crease, between the tendons of palmaris longus and flexor carpi radialis muscles (in the middle of your inner arm).
Actions & Effects:
Similar to PC 3, but more for Chronic Heart symptoms from Qi stagnation.
Opens and relaxes the chest, chest tightness, asthma, angina, palpitations.
Insomnia a/or other spirit disorders of an excess or deficient nature, mania, nervousness, stress, poor memory.
Nausea, seasickness, motion sickness, vomiting, epigastric pain.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.Use your thumb to press your Nei Guan point. Then, using medium force and speed, rub in tiny circles for two minutes. Do once on the morning and once on the evening.
3. UB 40 Acupuncture Point – Wei Zhong – Bladder Meridian
English Name: Bend Middle
Location: At the midpoint of the popliteal fossa (behind the knee).
Actions & Effects:
As the Lumbar Command Point, useful for all lumbar related issues: acute low back pain, sprain, muscle spasms, etc.
Main point for heat conditions such as summer heat, heatstroke and heat exhaustion.
Main point for all skin related issues: itching, oozing, inflammation, etc.
Good local point for leg and/or knee pain.Put your foot on the low chair. Use your middle finger to press your Wei Zhong point. Then, using medium force and speed, rub in tiny circles for two to three minutes.4. ST 36 Acupuncture Point – Zu San Li – Stomach Meridian
English Name: Leg Three Li
Location: On the leg, one finger breadth lateral to the tibia’s anterior crest, 3 cm inferior to ST 35 in the depression to the lateral side of the patella.
Actions & Effects:
Tonifies deficient Qi a/or Blood.
Tonifies Wei Qi.
All issues involving the Stomach a/or the Spleen.
Clears disorders along the course of the channel – breast problems, lower leg pain.
Earth as the mother of Metal – will support Lung function in cases of asthma, wheezing, dyspnea.
Psychological/Emotional disorders – PMS, depression, nervousness.Use your thumbs to press your Zu San Li point. Then, using strong force and slow speed, rub in tiny circles for two minutes.
These four acupuncture points can be stimulated once or twice a day. Try to do both sides. After two weeks you should be able to feel an improvement in your health problem
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Acupressure - form of treatment for pain that involves pressure on particular points in the body know as "acupressure points". Stems from traditional Chinese medicine.
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we want to educate you on some acupressure points that help to nurture emotions, calm anxiety, relieve depression, and balance grief. These quite possibly are some of the most important acupressure points that you will ever learn.
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‘ featuring Ram Dass, Joan Halifax, Bodhi Be and Dale Borglum – all leaders who have been helping those in transition and especially those who caretake for the dying.
Acupressure points and slow deep breathing can help you transcend the fear of death and make it a graceful passage. I will show you the Sea of Tranquility point (CV 17) to use on yourself during the dying process and after the person dies to calm your spirit, nurture your body while grieving, and enable you to keep your heart open. For Others:
I suggest gently holding the inside of the wrist, to cover acupressure points L7, L8, and L9, below the pad of the thumb on both sides to feel the life force of the radial artery and connect with the person you are caring for. Focus on being in the present moment, and remind yourself to breathe deeply, continually.
For Self-Healing: Hold CV 17, at the center of your breastbone, known as the Sea of Tranquility point. With your spine straight, focus on breathing slowly and deeply into this emotional healing acupressure point to nurture your heart. Using this acupressure point in a hospice environment can clear and transform negative emotions, overwhelm, deepen your breathing, and nurture your heart.
Point Location: CV 17, a great emotional balancing point, is four finger widths up from the base of your breastbone, in the center of your chest. Use your fingertips to slowly rub up and down in the center of your breastbone to feel for an indentation, between the nipples on a man.
Holding CV 17 with your fingertips enables you to practice throughout the day to encourage yourself to breathe deeply into the pressure being applied to your breastbone. This will calm any anxiety or stress in your life.
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