Acupressure For Stress:
There are many ways you can reduce your overall levels of stress. Of course, easier said then done, right? Meditation, yoga, exercising, aromatherapy massage, essential oils, and other relaxation techniques or lifestyle changes may help change the way your body and mind cope with stress. Similarly, these methods take time and extra energy on your part. On the contrary, a less utilized way is participating in acupressure for stress.
If you’re looking for a quick, cost effective way to help rid the body of excess tension, you should give acupressure a try. Although well known, many have never given acupressure a thought. Here’s why you should!
A long History!
Acupressure has been around for over 2000 years. Although not thought to be abundantly studied through today’s science, it’s certainly lasted the test of time. Consequently, maybe an indication acupressure has very real positive influences on the self. Like with exercise or other stress reducing methods, consistency is key. Thus, helping sustain improvement, and staying ahead of the pain or stress curve.
A review in 2014, looked at both aged, and new studies. Particularly, acupressure as a source for pain management. Some studies reviewed, examined acupressure for menstrual pain, lower back pain, headache and other traumatic pain. According to the review, acupressure has been shown to be effective for a variety of pains in different populations.
It’s never a good thing to allow stress to build-up in the body. This can lead to emotional instability and a decline in health. So, in this post, we’ll discuss some key pressure points for stress. Some of the pressure points can be activated by you, yourself.
Video tutorial: Acupressure For Stress From The Cleveland Clinic!
What is Acupressure and How Can It Help With Stress?
Acupressure is an ancient Chinese art that utilizes pressure points in the body. Theoretically, by pressing into certain “points” on the body, feeling a reduction in levels of stress, pain or pressure. Furthermore, bringing on a sense of calm and peace. Acupressure can seem like a very basic method of stress reduction, but can be a fast, cost effective way, of supporting healthy levels of stress.
How can pressing into certain “points” on the body for an allotted time, help rid the body of stress. A handful of studies have suggested the effectiveness of acupressure. In particular, reducing stress significantly with the help of regular sessions.
The fundamental components of acupressure revolve around channels within the body called “meridians”. These are known as pathways of energy. Pressing certain “points” are said to help energy flow. Oftentimes, in completely different areas of the body, then where the pressure is applied.
This is a theorized technique. Some suggest the basis behind the decrease in stress have to do with certain chemicals (endorphins) that may be released when stimulating said points on the body.
Other Touted Uses of Acupressure:
- Muscle Cramping
- Motion Sickness
Firm pressure. The idea here is to be able to activate or stimulate each pressure point you’re targeting! Try your thumb, finger or even a knuckle to apply pressure.
Get into a position that you can sustain with little movement in your body.
Like with meditation, yoga, and other relaxation techniques, try your best to relax, and focus on your breathing.
Focus on finding the “right points” and learning your body. After the first few sessions, you may find yourself wanting to repeat the massage to specific points more then others.
Try recruiting some assistance. Oftentimes, acupuncturist will aid in a session of acupressure with you lying or sitting on a massage table.
A more in-depth look at contemporary acupressure therapy can be read about here!
Top Acupressure Points For Stress:
It’s one thing to understand what this art form entails. It’s another to find specific pressure points. In this section, we’ll discuss a few common pressure points utilized in the practice.
Afterwards, you can spend some time practicing yourself. Keep in mind their are said to be over 300 different pressure points.
Yin Tang Pressure Point
Firstly, is yin tang. This area, also known as your third eye, is one of the simplest to locate. Yin tang point is located right in the center of your forehead. Due to the location, this acupressure point is highly accessible and easy to perform.
Simply use your thumb or index finger and bring it right in between your eyebrows. Then, hold the pressure for at least thirty seconds.
Yin tang is believed to induce a sense of calm and tranquility. Anxiety and other turbulent emotions can also be tamed when you press into this area of your face.
Furthermore, thought to help with conditions such as insomnia, or open up the nasal passages.
How to Perform:
2. Union Valley Pressure Point
Union valley pressure point is another easy to reach pressure point. Specifically, performed to help support healthy stress levels. The area is located in-between your thumb and index finger.
Place your thumb or index finger from the opposite hand on this point and press down firmly. Going between the webbing of your hand will make it easier to press down.
Hold this point for thirty or more seconds, breathing rhymical and deeply. The union valley point is thought to help support the reduction of stress-induced headaches, and neck pain.
To note: If you’re pregnant, you may want to avoid this pressure point as it may have an effect on stimulating or inducing labor.
Your chest center point also believed to help support healthy stress levels is in the middle of your chest.
Place your fingers in-between your nipples. Press firmly into this area for thirty-sixty seconds.
People with very high levels of stress may benefit from this pressure point. Specifically, when that stress is accompanied by shortness of breath, chest discomfort, or chest tightness. Pressing into the chest center is believed to be associated with relief of these symptoms.
Shoulder Well Pressure Point
The shoulder well pressure point is located on your back. Specifically, in your shoulder muscle. You’ll have to reach back, to stimulate to this area. Thus, recruited a friend may be wise.
Shoulder well is thought to aid with stress, muscle tension and headaches. Like union valley pressure point, those whom are pregnant may want to avoid.
To correctly press into this point, use both hands. There are two spots that you’ll want to press at once. One finger should be on your left shoulder muscle, the other one the right shoulder muscle.
The shoulder well point is near the base of the neck and at the highest point of your shoulder. Press or pinch the muscle here for a few seconds (using your thumb and middle finger). Furthermore, you can gently massage the area.
5. Hundred Meeting Pressure Point
Lastly, is the hundred meeting pressure point. Also known as the governing vessel. Bringing energy into this pressure point can help clear the mind and bring profound mental clarity. Headaches, dizziness, and overthinking may also subside.
Located on the midline of the head, in-line with apex of the ears (Learnreligious).
The easiest way of explaining this point is by locating the crown of the skull. If you place your finger right at the top of your head, and place it in a central area, your finger should align with the tops of your ears. Try pressing into this area for thirty second intervals.
Final Tips and Thoughts on Acupressure
Acupressure is still largely unstudied in the field of science. However, some current research and literature suggests regular acupressure can positively impact mental health, specifically with stress reduction. Thus, put your reservations aside, and give it a try. In addition, it may be wise to seek out a professional.
Oftentimes, individuals find that using multiple techniques help support a positive and healthy mind. Acupressure is a cost effective, pain free way to help support healthy daily living.