Do you suffer from asthma? If so, you aren't alone. It's estimated that more than 26 million Americans have this chronic inflammation of the airways, which triggers a wide range of symptoms like wheezing, coughing, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, and tightness in the chest. While some people assume asthma is nothing more than a mild condition with no real health implications, this couldn't be further from the truth. In 2011 alone, a quarter of a million people lost their lives as a result of asthma-related complications.
Did you realize that Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and acupuncture can be a safe and effective solution that can help alleviate the symptoms and reduce the frequency of flare-ups? This ancient practice is effective in the treatment of numerous respiratory disorders, including asthma, and the World Health Organization (WHO) even listed asthma as being “a condition for which the therapeutic effect of acupuncture has been shown but for which further proof is needed.” So, while we will not claim that that acupuncture will cure your asthma, it can certainly help with the severity of asthma symptoms.
Acupressure Self-Help For Asthma
Based on acupuncture, acupressure involves pressure exerted on specific areas of the body in an attempt to restore the body's flow of Qi. Treatment typically involves placing the fingers, hand or elbow on the problematic meridians and pressing down with moderate pressure. By placing pressure on these areas, the body's Qi is able to flow freely once again; thus, relieving a wide variety of adverse symptoms and conditions. While there's no known cure for asthma, many people have reported significant relief through acupressure.
In 2011, researchers performed a systematic review of the effectiveness of acupressure to treat various symptoms (e.g. nausea, pain, insomnia). In 35 of the 43 controlled trials analyzed, researchers found acupressure to be an effective form of treatment. Another study conducted that same year found acupressure to effectively relieve pain during child birth.
One of the many benefits of acupressure is that it can be performed anywhere, anytime. Furthermore, you can perform it on yourself, negating the need for a therapist. If you suffer from asthma, try placing pressure on these two points:
- Your upper left and/or right chest area, about three finger widths under the collarbone. Using two or three fingers, gently press this area and hold it in place for 30-45 seconds before releasing. Repeat a few times and several times throughout the day. In addition to treating asthma, this acupressure point is also known to relieve chest congestion, coughing and difficulties breathing.
- Another helpful acupressure point can be found next to the breastbone, also below the collarbone. Simply follow the steps outlined above by placing two or three fingers here and you should notice an improvement in your symptoms.
Try these self-help techniques in addition to your inhaler and give me a call today to learn how acupuncture can help you lessen your asthma problem!