We have all heard of acupuncture as an ancient Chinese healing method
but perhaps you are not aware of acupressure?
Derived from acupuncture
, acupressure is the technique of applying slight force to certain pressure points on different parts of the body in an attempt to eliminate the symptoms of headaches and migraines – and many find it a very successful method too.
What are pressure points?
Pressure points are actually clusters of nerves found at various parts of the body that help regulate blood circulation and as some headaches and migraines are brought on by a tightness and stiffness in the neck and face muscles that can slow down blood circulation, the idea itself makes good sense.
If you can apply pressure or even massage the pressure points, this can help relax tight muscles, increase blood circulation and ultimately relieve the headache.
But first you have to find out where these pressure points are located...and there are quite a few of them. Some are even numbered:
Back of the neck
Known as GB 20, this point lies in the depression which is at the base of your skull. Run your fingers from the center point of the back of your neck to past the first large muscle you can sense. Press slightly upwards and inwards until you feel a tender point. Then massage by moving your fingers in a circular motion.
GB 21 is located on the gallbladder meridian, at the base of the neck and at the highest points of the shoulders on either side of the body. Apply gentle pressure to this point for about a minute to the place where it is most tender. As well as headaches, pressure can also be effective for dizziness and those chest-related problems such as asthma and coughing.
On the hands
The point numbered LI 4 is located between the thumb and the index finger. Find the meaty part on the back of your hand and using your other thumb, squeeze the muscle by pressing down hard. If you massage the point in a circular motion, you can help reduce those headaches in the frontal portion. Boosting your immunity is another advantage of this massage technique.
On the feet
LV 3 is located on top of the foot between the big toe and first toe and is also known as the calming point. Find a depression and massage over the point in small circular motions. Combine with the previous point (LI 4) to improve the blood circulation while helping reduce headaches and any shortness of breath.
On the ankle
Go to the inside of your leg to that point just above the bone that sticks out in your ankle. Find the spot about four fingers width above the bone. Press the point on the back of the tibia bone. Apply pressure against the bone in the same direction as the toes. Not only will this pressure point relieve your headache, it is believed to make you less irritable.
One word of warning is that pregnant women should not use the LI 4 and GB 21 pressure points as they may cause uterine contractions.
On the temples
Another method is to find your temples (they are located on either side of your head about an inch behind your eyes) and place your thumbs there while simultaneously massaging them by gently rotating your thumbs for around 20 seconds to a minute, remembering to breathe steadily. Or using your index fingers, gently massage the inside ends of your eyebrows just above the bridge of your nose. Another suggestion is massaging the area right below and above the eyebrows till the point where they connect to the nose bridge also helps in reducing a headache. The massage should involve strong, circular motions for some 20 to 40 seconds at one go.
How to apply pressure
Acupressure for headaches can be slightly uncomfortable but should never be painful. Apply gentle, steady pressure to each pressure point but of course stop if you experience any pain. Work the pressure around the area to find the best location, being aware that pressure points vary from person to person.
You might need to experiment to see what works for you with acupressure because some people are extremely sensitive while others feel nothing at all.
Read more: http://www.ehow.com/how_4862128_relieve-headache-pressure-points.html#ixzz2l6aIc5WA