Acupressure: An Ancient Healing Art
Acupressure is an ancient healing art. Acupressure techniques were first practiced in India and China. Practitioners apply pressure by using their fingers, thumbs or elbows, (and sometimes even simple tools such as a pencil or metal ball), on certain acupressure points, in order to relieve pain or to treat certain ailments.
According to ancient Oriental medicine, the body’s health is based on the smooth flow of Qi (energy) through channels which run below the surface of the skin. These channels are called Meridians, and each is linked to a specific organ, such as heart, liver and kidneys. Each Meridian also has pressure points called acu-points located on them.
When these Meridians are blocked, free flow of Qi is not possible, leading to various health problems. Depending upon the ailment, practitioners diagnose which Meridian is affected and apply pressure on that related acu-point, in order to relieve the congestion. Pressure is applied either by massaging or by pressing or vibrating for about 10 minutes. Sometimes, they may even squeeze, tap or rub that spot. This technique is called acupressure massage therapy or Shiatsu, and is completely non-invasive.
The number of acupressure points in the body number more than 300, and it is very important for practitioners to study these acupressure points charts, in order to effectively diagnose and treat the problem.
Benefits of acupressure:
- Acupressure massage therapy improves circulation of blood, which helps to flush out toxins, and increase absorption of oxygen and nutrients.
- Back aches, headache, tension, stress and anxiety benefit greatly by the practice of acupressure.
- Acupressure weight loss is another facet of this treatment. Acupressure is applied to the relevant points connected to the hands, feet, body, ears, kidney, intestines and adrenal glands. This helps to relieve water-retention, curb excessive appetite and aid proper elimination of food and toxins.
- Maternity acupressure is another aspect which is gaining increasing popularity. Nausea, an unwelcome part of most pregnancy, can be significantly reduced by applying acupressure on the specific acu-points located on the wrist. Other acu-points can be massaged to activate the immune system, which is essential for the continued good health of the mother and fetus.
- Another aspect of maternity acupressure is labor acupressure. Tests have proved that acupressure helps in quicker deliveries, because it helps to stimulate labor contractions, helps the cervix to dilate and the baby to descend. Many expectant mothers prefer to take recourse to acupressure in order to relieve pain during child-birth, rather than take medicines.
- In all cases, it is advisable to go to an experienced and skilled practitioner. If you wish to practice it on yourself, study the pressure point chart carefully. Pressure must not be applied for too long. Stop immediately if you feel any pain or soreness.