Information on the treatment philosophy and applicability of the ancient Chinese healing practice of acupressure, a less invasive offshoot of acupuncture.
Amidst a sea of holistic treatments for a laundry list of maladies, some more effective than others, it can be argued that acupuncture stands at the forefront of our quasi-medicinal consciousness. Often overlooked, however, is its less invasive incarnation known as acupressure. Ancient Chinese healing is founded on the principle that the human body is composed of pathways, meridians, that begin at one’s fingertips, pass into the brain, and then branch off to a specific organ or system. These meridians, of which there are fourteen, disperse energy throughout the body and are thought to be interdependent of one another. The middle finger of your right hand, for example, contains on its tip the pressure points for stimulation of energy flow to your nasal cavity, larynx, mouth, and eyeball.
Acupressure, like acupuncture, chooses not to deal specifically with any one of these bodily components, but rather with all aspects of a person at once. The body, along with its mind, spirit, and emotions, is a synergistic organism, and acupressure intends to treat it with this in consideration. From an Americanized perspective, it can simply be considered a specialized form of massage therapy, one with a very specific agenda. Through this manipulation of the body, muscular tension is relaxed and vital life forces are aligned for optimized homeostasis.
Depending on how familiar you are with ancient Chinese healing, you are likely to find that acupressure is practiced very similarly to acupuncture. In fact, it is much simpler, as it eliminates the pesky needles. Often, if approached kindly, an acupuncturist will be able to provide you with acupressure treatment, or at least within his or her facility. The schooling is much the same, though the acupressure student is taught to kneed these pressure points rather than spur them. Again, the procedure is non-invasive, and will typically last about an hour while a practitioner gently, but firmly, presses on various points of one’s body, fully clothed. A common waiting-room diagram shows one hundred common pressure points, organized numerically according to which part of the body they affect. There are eight points for the spleen, eleven points for the stomach, nineteen points for the bladder, etc.
Most clients, if encouraged, will need multiple sessions to complete a treatment. The number of sessions will likely depend on the severity of one’s symptoms, as well as how many points of stimulation are necessary. Among the detriments for which acupressure claims to provide relief is general stress and tension. You need not have a specific malady to seek acupressure treatment. Massage enthusiasts will particularly want to investigate its claims of mind and body relaxation, along with increased circulation. It is a not-quite-common phenomenon that the most basic massage, even if done by oneself, helps the body cleanse itself. By stimulating blood flow and nerve activity, energy levels are boosted and general healing is catalyzed.
Acupressure is a fantastic tool, arguably ancient Chinese healings best kept secret. Its appeal lies in its approachability, its effectiveness in its versatility. Even individuals with terminal conditions commonly report an upward flux of well-being after an acupressure session. Pregnant women, similarly, have experienced abated labor pains and less general fatigue. Chances are, regardless of your condition(s), acupressure can help with something. I encourage you to pursue this interesting resource in good heart and good health.