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Sep 25

Pointing the Way – Stiff Neck

Recently, I woke up with a stiff neck from sleeping “funny”. It was one of those bothersome and painful stiff necks where you had to do head checks in the car with your whole body!

However, Chinese Medicine came to the rescue! There is an acupuncture point called “Luo Zhen”, which translates as “fall off pillow”, which I suppose is what may have happened.

The point is located in a small depression on the back of your hand just past the knuckles of the index and middle finger. It can be found by sliding a finger from between those two knuckles towards the wrist and your finger will drop into it.

Luo Zhen Acupuncture Point

To use this point effectively:

  • Locate the point on the opposite side of the pain. For example, if the right side of your neck hurts, press the Luo Zhen point on the left hand.
  • Press firmly with the tip of a finger into the depression of the point so that you feel a tender sensation. I find I get the best pressure by using the tip of my thumb.
  • Maintain the pressure whilst rubbing in small circles on the point.
  • Whilst pressing the point, turn your head from side to side and you will notice that with time, the amount you can turn increases and the amount of pain decreases.

For me, it took a couple of minutes and I could really notice the difference. I have heard that it may take longer for other people so keep persisting!


Aug 27

Acupuncture Treatment for Pokemon Go

Acupuncture can help you catch more Pokemon – really. If you have been trying to “catch them all” recently,  you will have found that you are walking much more than you used to and you might be feeling sore feet and sore legs. Check out Gizmodo’s article on Tweets people have made about their ailments from playing Pokemon Go.

Sore Legs Become Pandemic As Pokemon Go Players Accidentally Get Exercise

Acupuncture can refresh those muscles for you so you can get back out there for your battles. It can also help improve your energy levels so you can hunt for longer. If you are serious about your Pokemon Go, come on down for some treatment to get you into optimum shape for hunting!

If you can’t get some acupuncture, you can do some acupressure on yourself. There is an acupuncture point, Stomach 36, Zhou San Li, which translates to “walk three-mile”. It is said that if you press this point, it will help you talk walk another three miles!


Jul 28

Skating on the Other Side of the Ice

When you get an injury, the first thing people reach for is ice. It constricts blood vessels to reduce swelling and inflammation and it desensitises nerve endings to reduce pain. It sounds great, doesn’t it?

Ice Pack

However, in the area of injury, you will find dead tissue as well as blood and other fluid leaked into the tissue. When you apply ice, it reduces the supply of nutrients, such as oxygen, and white blood cells which help to clean up the area, and decreases lymph drainage and removal of damaged cells. What you end up with is a stagnant pool of rubbish that is starting to congeal and harden, sticking onto your muscles, tendons and ligaments. In addition, ice causes your muscles, tendons and ligaments to contract, and post-injury, they have already contracted as a result of having been overstretched, making it more difficult for normal movement to be regained and once again, slowing the healing process.

Additionally, from a Chinese Medicine viewpoint, coldness can also penetrate our energy systems, which is why sometimes, arthritic-like pain is felt when it is cold.

So, what can be done instead?

  • Apply emergency acupoints to reduce pain and stimulate energy and circulation.
  • Cup and bleed local area to remove stagnant blood and fluid.
  • Self-massage with liniments that move the blood, reduce inflammation and reduce pain. Massage towards the heart to assist with lymphatic drainage.
  • Apply cooling herbal poultices to reduce inflammation, move the blood and nourish the muscles and tendons. There is a “herbal ice” called “San Huang San” which is the gold standard poultice for acute injuries and is best applied immediately after being injured.
  • Rest the injured area to prevent further injury.
  • Apply heat with wheat bags or have warm baths once redness and heat have dissipated.
  • Move the area gently when able in order to maintain movement and circulation.

If you don’t have anything available except ice, use it sparingly only for ten minutes every hour, and only in the first 24 hours, and see a Chinese Medicine practitioner as soon as you are able!