Thursday, March 13, 2014

Congested? Try Acupressure

Nasal congestion can be very annoying and can take days to clear up especially if you've got it from a bad cold or flu. Your nasal passages become inflamed and lots of mucus can be produced from your body fighting a possible virus.

In acupuncture there is a commonly used point to help open up the nasal passages, stimulating this point with a needle can have a strong effect over the nose and maxillary sinuses, which lie to the sides of the nostrils. This point is commonly known as Large Intestine(LI) 20 or Yingxiang in Chinese, which translates to welcome fragrance. As you can tell by its translation it literally means to be able to smell. This point lies to the side of each nostril in the upper part of the groove of your cheek,  just before the groove ends and meets the top of the nostril. Acupressure is a great way to stimulate this point and you don't have to worry about being as accurate as an acupuncturist to make it work.

To stimulate  LI 20 use a strong, but tolerable amount of pressure with the tip of the index fingers aiming upwards and toward the top of the nose. You can do one nostril at a time or both at the same time. The more pressure used the stronger the stimulation will be. Press in for about 2 minutes and you should begin feeling a sensation in the area. If the case is severe it may not work right away, so it would be good to do this multiple times a day.

Also, if only one nostril is congested you can lay on your opposite side and press in to the point on the congested side. In other words if your right nostril is congested lay on your left side and apply pressure into the right LI 20 and vice versa for the other side. This may be more helpful for severe cases as well.

There is also another point that can help, this point is more commonly used in pediatric acupressure to help unblock an infants nose. This point is called Yintang, which translates to Seal Hall. It is most commonly used in acupuncture to help people relax, but because of its location it can help with blocked nasal passages as well.

This point lies midway between the medial end of the eyebrows, right above the top of the nose. For infants it is good to apply light pressure with the index finger, stroking the point downward. This can do wonders for congested babies and can really help stuck mucus to flow out. For adults its good to use the the thumb and index finger and massage the area for as long as desired. For some people it is a very relaxing point to have massaged.

Of course seeing an acupuncturist can really help open the nasal passages and help you get over that cold or flu quicker. If you have any comments or questions please leave them below and thank you for visiting Acuthink!





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