If you're suffering from insomnia and conventional medical approaches don't appeal to you, don't despair. Many natural alternatives provide safe, long-term relief. One such approach is acupressure. This powerful technique can provide immediate relief, yet it costs nothing and takes only a few minutes.
Sound too good to be true? Let me assure you, it isn't. A growing body of clinical evidence confirms that acupressure is effective in treating sleep disturbances. A study published in Neurophysiologie Clinique reported that stimulus of a specific acupressure point on the wrist resulted in decreased wakefulness and increased total sleep time. Another study, published in the Journal of Chinese Medicine, reported that thirteen night-crying infants all ceased night crying after only three treatment sessions.
Acupressure is based on the traditional Oriental belief that the body contains a life energy (the Chinese call it chi). This energy runs through the body in channels called meridians. When this energy isn't flowing properly, disease occurs; when normal energy flow is restored, the body is able to heal itself.
Acupressure is closely related to acupuncture. Both are used to restore the proper flow of chi. But unlike acupuncturewhich requires needles and can only be done by a trained practitioneracupressure uses the application of gentle finger pressure to specific points on the skin, and you can do it yourself.
two acupressure points traditionally used
to relieve insomnia are
the Spirit Gate and the Inner Gate.
Pressure on these points helps
balance and calm the heart, alleviate
anxiety, and promote sound
sleep. Both are located on the inner
wrist, so you can easily reach
them yourself. The Inner Gate can be
found in the middle of the
inner side of the forearm, two and
one-half finger widths from the
wrist crease. The Spirit Gate is located
on the inside of the wrist
crease, in line with the little finger.
(See diagram below.)
you're having trouble falling asleep,
wake frequently once you fall
asleep, or wake up earlier than you want
to, try using acupressure
on one or both of these points. Take a
few moments to read the instructions
on applying acupressure in the Healthy
Hint section below. Then
apply pressure with your fingers to
either the Spirit Gate or the
Inner Gate. If you don't get sufficient
relief from the first point,
try applying pressure to the other.
You'll soon learn whether you
get the most benefit from pressing both
points or only one.
to your health!
M. Lark, MD P.S.