You may have heard of acupuncture, but what about acupressure? Acupressure is a widely-practices alternative therapy with its roots in traditional Chinese medicine, and there are many health benefits attached to acupressure.
Find out more about acupressure and how it can benefit you in this quick guide.
What is Acupressure?
Acupressure is a form of healing where the practitioner uses gentle pressure from the fingers on specific points of the body. These points are known as healing points, and they relate to areas in the body that are experiencing blockages of energy. The key to a healthy body and mind is energy flow, say acupressure practitioners, and when the energy is flowing well around your body you feel well and benefit from better health.
Energy blockages create poor health. Using acupressure, you can release tension, boost your immune system, reduce pain, and increase circulation; all the time creating more vitality and vibrant health.
The pressure from the fingers is firm or gentle. The location of the pressure points relates to those that are stimulated in acupuncture. But there are no needles involved in acupressure.
Here are some of the specific health benefits of acupressure, and why it can help benefit your whole health.
1) Pain Relief
If one part of the body hurts, such as a headache, there is a pressure point elsewhere on the body that relates to this body part. And when that pressure point is massaged or when firm pressure is applied, it releases the blockages and helps promote pain relief. The pressure also promotes blood flow around the body, which relieves pain.
2) Loses the Wrinkles
Acupressure helps to increase muscle tone and it also sends more blood circulating to the face. The increased blood flow brings more oxygen to the area, which improves the tone of the skin and helps the connective tissue regain strength. All this can lead to fewer wrinkles and better skin tone over time. Applying simple pressure to certain points helps release blockages and assists in relaxing the muscles. As toxins are removed from the skin, your skin looks more vibrant and younger.
3) Helps Depression and Anxiety
Some studies suggest that acupressure can help to relieve depressive symptoms as well as help improve mood. Sufferers of anxiety may also find relief with the help of acupressure, although more studies need to take place in order to be completely sure of acupressure’s effect on mental health and wellbeing.
4) Releases Muscular Tension
You may suffer from stiff muscles and muscular tension after sitting in a certain position all day or when you do a lot of physical exercise. Use acupressure to release this tension – the action stimulates the nerves that are feeding into the muscles. It relaxes the body and helps lower stress. Acupressure is particularly effective for eliminating tension in the lower back and can be used alongside chiropractic treatment for more effective relief.
5) Promotes Better Blood Flow
One of the main benefits of acupressure comes about through sending blood flowing more effectively around the body. An increase in blood flow helps all organs in the body.
6) Helps Treat Arthritis
There are studies that show acupressure is a good therapy for helping to treat arthritis as the therapy is anti-inflammatory and can release endorphins, which is good for pain relief.
7) Anti-Nausea Benefits
Many people use acupressure to help to treat nausea, for example in the case of motion sickness, in pregnancy, or after surgery or chemotherapy. The point that relates to nausea is in the inside of the wrist, and you can get acupressure bands that put pressure on this point and can help to relieve nausea and sickness.
8) Relieves Stress and Promotes Calm
When you unblock energy points in the body and the energy flows more easily around the body you benefit from not only a healthier mind but a calmer mind and less stress. This is what practitioners say, and while there have been no studies to show this result, it is true that many people experience mental wellbeing when they have an acupressure treatment.
9) Help Symptoms Associated with Cancer
Acupressure can help to relieve the problems of nausea which come with chemotherapy as a treatment for cancer. In addition, acupressure may be able to reduce the levels of stress and anxiety that cancer sufferers also experience.
10) Overall Wellbeing
One of the main reasons why people practice acupressure is to gain overall health benefits that are not limited to one specific health condition. Acupressure is said to help the body function to optimum capacity, which results in more energy, greater vitality, and better mental health. As overall wellbeing is raised, the body is better able to fight off disease and become stronger.