It is a traditional Chinese form of medical therapy which has been practised for thousands of years. Very similar to acupuncture -- which uses needles instead -- acupressure deals with the similar pressure points known as acupuncture points. These points are aligned along the pathways or channels in our body through which flows vital energy. These create a network for communication among our various organs. So, when these channels are blocked or imbalanced, we feel pain and discomfort.
When the acupuncture points are stimulated, (especially the ones located in the palms of our hands and soles of our feet) it signals the brain to release the hormone endorphin, which acts as a natural pain reliever. All you need is a book to map the points and three simple steps:
Sit in a relaxed position and be patient.
The pressure points are to be pressed firmly in circular movements or using up and down strokes using the thumb and the index finger. Devices made for this purpose can also be used.
The points should have pressure applied for a few seconds up to a couple of minutes and then released. Take slow and deep breaths when the pressure is being applied.
Acupressure not only helps heal the body but also relieves the mind from emotional distress. Pressurising certain points everyday can cure headaches, back pains, chronic fatigue, stress, insomnia, menstrual pains and stomach problems.
It also helps cure constipation, ulcers, high blood pressure, and kidney and thyroid problems. Stimulation of these points restores the flow of energy by sending the body to its natural state of wellbeing by boosting the immune system.
Sickness is inevitable and stress is unavoidable. The least we can do is stop popping aspirins whenever we have a headache or back pain. Instead, we should incorporate acupressure into our everyday habit.
By Mormee Mahtab