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Acupressure Treatment: A Brief Overview

Here’s another blog this week contributed by our resident LMT extraordinaire, Mr. Heath Henderson. We are able to bring more and more options to our patients and Acupressure is just one of Mr. Henderson’s many talents. Give it a read and see what you think!

What is Acupressure?

Acupressure is an alternative medicine technique that is based upon the principles of acupuncture. Its concept is that energy flows through meridians in the body. During a treatment session, physical pressure is applied to acupuncture points with the goal of clearing blockages in these meridians. Pressure may be administered in various forms using a finger, elbow, or other various devices.

What can Acupressure be used for?

There are several medical studies that have been done that suggest acupressure may be an effective way to help manage many issues such as: nausea and vomiting, low back pain, tension headaches, migraines, stomach ache, and many other ailments.  I would suggest that you research any pain or condition you may have to see if acupressure would be of benefit to you.

Techniques:

There are several different methods of applying pressure in these reflex zones such as; rubbing, rolling or applying a static hold. For each of these methods there are various tools used during a treatment session. Some of these tools being:

• The Acuball- A small ball made of rubber with protuberances which can be heated. It is used to apply pressure and relieve muscle and joint pain.

• The Energy Roller- A small cylinder with protuberances. It is held between the hands and rolled back and forth to apply acupressure.

• The Foot Roller (also “krupa chakra”)- A round, cylindrical roller with protuberances. It is placed on the floor and the foot is rolled back and forth over it.

• The Power Mat (also pyramid mat)- A mat with small pyramid-shaped bumps that you walk on.

• The Spine Roller- A bumpy roller containing magnets that is rolled up and down the spine.

• The Teishein- Known as one of the original nine classical acupuncture needles described in the original texts of acupuncture. Even though it is described as an acupuncture needle, it does not pierce the skin. It is used to apply rapid percussion pressure to the points being treated.

Effectiveness of Acupressure:

Many argue how effective acupressure is, but numerous studies have shown that it is highly effective in back and muscle pain. I do encourage everyone to do a little research on acupressure for any pain, or problem you may suffer from. Though every person experiences different results from this treatment, I have personally found acupressure to be effective on:

• Low Back Pain,

• Tension Headaches,

• Muscle Spasms,

• Neck Pain

• Shoulder Pain,

• Hip Pain

• Sciatica issues.

Here is one study conducted in 2011, that goes over the effectiveness of acupressure for low back and various conditions

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3154967/

Heath Henderson, MS, NMT, LMT

References:

1 Sharma, Rajeev (2003). Medicina Alternativa. Alpha Science Int’l Ltd. pp. 196–200. Retrieved 2009-01-05.

2 Dent, HE; Dewhurst, NG; Mills, SY; Willoughby, M. (Jun 2003). “Continuous PC6 wristband acupressure for relief of nausea and vomiting associated with acute myocardial infarction: a partially randomised, placebo-controlled trial.”.

3 Lee, Eun Jin; Frazier, Susan K. (2011). “The Efficacy of Acupressure for Symptom Management: A Systematic Review”. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management 42 (4): 589–603.

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