At the beginning or in the middle of a cold or flu? Feel like you can’t get a hold on it and don’t know where to begin in terms of helping yourself or a loved one feel better?
Amongst a few other effective tools I have put together in a freebie for you to download from my website, acupressure to certain areas and points on the body is a very effective way to keep the chest open and clear heat and inflammation especially when you're down and out with a cold or flu. Not to mention it can do so much to improve your immune system.
I was a total sceptic of acupressure and acupuncture and TCM (otherwise known as Traditional Chinese Medicine), due to limited exposure living in a small town. Finally in search for help as a teenager, with a long history of being on antibiotics for chronic ear infections with literally no improvement, I decided to see an acupuncturist. In hindsight, I likely shouldn't have been prescribed antibiotics for the symptoms I presented time and time again because they were mostly all viral infections which antibiotics can’t address. Antibiotics don’t work to treat viruses. They only kill bacteria!
I was in utter shock that with only two treatments spaced 4 days apart my ears were totally cleared and my congestion was almost completely gone. My curiosity peaked and it is to date one of the preliminary reasons that I went on to study acupuncture and TCM. This and so many other success stories is also why I feel compelled to pass on this ancient wisdom and science to treat and heal modern day problems.
Regardless of whether this is your “annual” cold or the second one in your home this month, the time it takes your body for the virus to run its course greatly depends on what you do to help shorten its course. And then once you have got things under control again, what do you do to prevent it from coming back again soon?
Acupuncture and acupressure addresses both of these issues. Appropriate point selection allows us to address and treat symptoms and can help boost our immunity to prevent the illness from reoccurring again soon.
But before we focus on prevention, let's address the current problem!
Continue reading until the end and I will help you to locate 5, of many, effective acupressure points that will help you treat your cold or flu regardless of what stage you are at with it.
Before we get started I want to go over the measurement used to find acupressure points. We use a measurement called Cun (pronounced ts'un).
Ts’un is the measurement of one “body inch” used to locate acupressure and acupuncture points. This measurement is always taken from the patient's hand from who you will be applying the acupressure to.
One Cun is equal to the width of the distal thumb joint or knuckle, the joint of the thumb that's closest to the nail.
Three Cun is the distance from the outside of your index finger to the outside of your pinky finger when the fingers are straight and loosely held together.
By the way, it may be a good idea to download and print off the free guide from my website that I put together for you so that you. This way you can have it in front of you to use as a reference as I go through the acupressure point locations that I recommend you using.
The first acupressure point I will discuss is SJ-5. This is a fantastic point for clearing the external pathogenic factor(s) that possibly wreaked all this havoc in the first place. Using this point at the very beginning stages of any cold or flu can actually prevent things from getting worse and really stop things in their tracks! It is effective at any stage and a good point to use to make sure that you fully recover from the illness so that things don't linger and flare up again when and if the body gets weakened again.
The best way to find this point is by flexing the wrist backwards and then on the back(dorsal) side find the midpoint of the transverse wrist crease. This point is 2 cun above the midpoint of the wrist crease and between the two forearm bones, the ulna, which is on the side of the pinky finger, and the radius, which is on the side of the thumb.
Remember to be using the measurements of the patients cun to be able to find all acupressure points.
The second point is GB-20. This point and whole area under the back of the head is helpful to clear up the eyes, help with headaches, sore throats, sore necks, and great if the cold came on shortly after being outside on a windy day.
Colds and flus often happen with kids (and adults) that don't protect their neck and head appropriately when playing outside! Typically the kids that are run down with colds or flus or snotty noses are the ones you'll find in the playground without a jacket on when playing outside on a cool and windy day.
I like to find this point by initially finding the sternocleidomastoid muscle (SCM), which is the big muscle along the neck, and follow the posterior side of this muscle up to the occiput (the bone on the back of the head). The point is in the depression between the upper posterior portion of the sternocleidomastoid muscle and trapezius muscle just below the occipital bone
GB-21 is the third point I'd like to talk about and is also great for sore necks, headaches, sore throats and very helpful for those that have come down with a cold or flu again after playing outside.
This point is midway between the spinal vertebrae C7, which is the one that sticks out when you bend your head downwards, and the acromion process which is the bony process on top of the shoulder. It is on the highest point of the trapezius muscle between those two areas and we usually have a sizable knot there.
A really good point to open the chest and the 4th point is Ren-17. It is great for alleviating chest tightness and helping to free airways to help with coughing. This is a specific point but the whole chest area is great to open and massage.
This point is on the midline of the sternum, the vertical chest bone in between the ribs, and level with the fourth intercostal space, the space in between the ribs. If gravity didn't have its way with us it would technically be at the midpoint between the nipples ;-)
While there are so many points to choose from, the last and 5th point I would like to share is LI-11. This is a great point to clear heat and inflammation and amazing for alleviating fevers.
Find this point with a bent elbow and it is basically where the lateral elbow crease ends, between the bicep tendon and the lateral epicondyle of the elbow.
If this feels like "Greek" to you, please print off the pdf guide that I put together for you that is on my website as it illustrates everything we just went through. Also watch out for a video that I will be doing soon on how to be sure you are locating these acupressure points accurately. Once you use and reap the benefits of these points you will use them for life.
So many people ask, “how do you stimulate these points once you locate them”?
There is actually an art to stimulating acupressure points depending on what you were trying to accomplish. But for simplicity's sake and for these chosen points, apply a decent amount of pressure for 3 seconds, lift and repeat for a minute per point. Then do this 2-3 times or more each day to speed up your recovery time.
Essential oils can also be applied and massaged into these points as I mentioned in my previous blog so check it out if you haven’t already. Be sure that you always use a carrier oil first before applying any essential oils. Then spread one drop of eucalyptus, and even peppermint oil if a fever is present, between all 5 points. You can do this using a finger or use a toothpick and dip it in the oil to put on each point.
Again, have a look at my free guide to learn more about essential oils, all the acupressure points, and enjoy reading through a few other effective tools that I use often to shorten the course of a cold or flu.
If you think these acupressure points would be of use to someone you know, please share this blog. Thanks so much for taking the time to learn something new. I know it isn’t always easy, especially if you or a loved one is sick.
I am loving sharing with you and until next time, have a beautiful day :-)
Ps. You will never regret making health your 1st priority. You are worth it!