Acupuncture and Emotions
By John Amaro, LAc, DC, Dipl. Ac.(NCCAOM), Dipl.Med.Ac.(IAMA)D.D. Palmer stated the three causes of subluxation and thus disease: poisons, traumas, and autointoxications.
In the long history of Asian healing, which we in the West usually only consider as being acupuncture, environment and emotion are considered the most significant factors in the cause of disease.
The Oriental practitioner also recognizes trauma, poisons, chemicals, parasites, and lifestyle (e.g., excessive sex in the male) as major contributors to the ills of mankind.
Acupuncture is only one of four major contributors to health, the others being manipulation of the spine and joints (chiropractic), nutritional therapy, and psychological well being.
We in the 20th century are constantly referring to our level of stress as we deal with routine matters in our day-to-day world. We make it sound as though we are the only ones who have ever experienced anxiety, fear, worry, grief, anger, and a host of emotions too numerous to mention in this article.
One need only browse through any book on world history. In any given era, in any country, it's evident that the people of those nations and times certainly experienced all, if not more, of the turmoil and emotions we are confronted with in our lives today.
In recent years, the holistic practitioner has become vitally aware of the emotions as being a major contributor to disease and dysfunction. We see more and more practitioners using such techniques as NET to balance the body and clear stagnated emotions.
Whenever we are confronted with a situation which will produce one of the five main emotions -- fear, anger, overexcitement, worry, and grief -- the mental emotion is translated to the body as a chemical messenger, which is usually rendered harmless by the protectorate meridians of the body, which are the body's first line of defense against both the ravages of the emotions as well as environmental factors.
Should the protectorate meridians, referred to as the extaordinary vessels, not be able to render harmless the negative factor due to a blockage, the pathology becomes apparent in the main meridian and thus produces symptomatology in the body. This symptomatology may be expressed by virtually any condition. An oversimplified example would be the gutters of a house blocked with leaves. When the rain comes, the runoff from the roof cannot drain properly, causing flooding or leaking of water in the house, basement or lawn. The cure is to simply remove the leaves from the gutter.
The same is true of the extraordinary vessels. If they are flowing freely, negative emotions simply drain off, and even though we will mentally experience the emotion, it normally does not produce long lasting effects.
However, as you are well aware, often an emotion which was experienced years ago may surface as a full blown psychological or physical problem much later in a person's life.
This is obviously a subject which is very complex, and even though the remedy I am about to offer is seemingly very simple, it likewise is complex, especially if you were to explore all of the ramifications and explanations of its use. In a nutshell, and I almost feel guilty making this very complex subject so elementary, to clean your gutters, one stimulates the pairs of points known as GB41 and TH5, S13 and BL62, SP4 and P6, LU7 and KI6.
Stimulate one point on one side of the body and its pair on the opposite side. This combination of points should be ideally repeated four times a year, primarily at the change of seasons. To do so will create a favorable balance situation which will allow most negative emotions as well as negative environmental factors to roll off like water on a duck's back.
In addition, there are several points which have a significant historical application which should also be considered if the patient is already suffering from emotional distress.
BL47 -- helps to release repressed fear and encourages feelings of strength resolution.
KI6 -- this point may be used for stage fright or fears about any performance.
P6 -- this point has historical applications for those who frighten very easily.
GB20 and a point opposite of cervical 3-4 -- these points are particularly beneficial for those with obsessive thought patterns and to relax mental tension.
TH15 -- this point helps relax nervous tension associated with worry.
ST 36 -- helps to reduce anxiety by strengthening the entire energetic and physical body.
GB21 -- this point is crucial to assisting feelings of irritation and general 'uptightness.'
BL42 -- helps to release repressed internalized anger.
SP4 -- traditionally used for anger and rage.
LU1 -- this is the great 'letting go' point used in grief or when the person has just experienced the loss of a loved one or another situation where grief and 'holding on' is a factor.
BL38 -- helps to strengthen the body after the experience of grief.
GV20-GV26-CV6 -- are traditional points used for shock or overwhelming emotions.
HT7 -- helps to balance and calm the heart meridian involved in overexcitement.
HT3 -- the master point on the body for anxiety.
I have in past articles in Dynamic Chiropractic illustrated all of the aforementioned acupoints in a five-part series "The Most Important Notes of Acupuncture" (September 12, October 24, November 21, and December 19, 1990, and January 18, 1991). Please refer to these issues for an illustrative listing of the meridians and acupoints of the body.
For those of you who are new to Dynamic Chiropractic, new to Asian healing, or who would just like an illustrated copy of the above mentioned acupoints, send a self-addressed stamped envelope to my attention and I will see that you receive it.
In the meantime, begin using these acupoints with whatever modality you have for stimulation. My favorite for this technique is a 1mw HeNe laser. This method of stimulation mimics moxibustion without all of the negatives surrounding its use. Electronic stimulation produces fair to good results, and needle stimulation is often too abrasive for the patient. If you do not have any access to these modalities, finger pressure does a decent job, but nothing compares to the laser in this application.
John A. Amaro, D.C., FIACA, Dipl.Ac.
Click here for previous articles by John Amaro, LAc, DC, Dipl. Ac.(NCCAOM), Dipl.Med.Ac.(IAMA).