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TCM Acupressure Care for Summertime Damp-Heat

Do you find the damp-heat of summer to seem almost unbearable? While all people are not weighed down by the humidity and heat, many folks find it quite taxing on their bodies. Many of us notice that we move slower and feel a greater sense of fatigue. Others with greater susceptibility to the negative impacts of damp-heat weather patterns may experience such sensations as:

  • Thinking that feels cloudy, fuzzy/muzzy, and slow

  • Limbs feeling heavy and weak

  • Skin rashes

  • A body that just can’t wake up/a persistent desire to lay down and sleep

  • Sinus pressure, discomfort, or headaches

  • Digestive system slows down

  • Heavy, difficult, or oppressive breathing

  • Water retention with edema, or swelling, in your legs, feet, arms, and hands

  • Genitourinary system problems, such as urine retention, genital itching, or turbid vaginal discharges

These symptoms are frustrating, especially if you need to think on your toes for a high-demand job, move quickly for an athletic event, or keep up with the energy of a small child! So, I’ve compiled descriptions of 6 acupressure points that can be quite beneficial in helping you adapt to this weather. When used with some of the other suggestions found in this newsletter, you are likely to experience greater comfort than before. However, this is not an exhaustive list of beneficial acu-points. If your symptoms are particularly strong than it may be helpful to work with a trained practitioner, such as myself, for more detailed bodywork and support.

To self-massage the points, simply hold, massage with a circular motion, or tap gently with your first two fingers. (For local points that help alleviate headaches, you may want to avoid tapping.) Also, remember that each can be found on the left and right sides of the body.

Stomach-8 Touwei: Head Corner

Acupressure Point - Stomach-8 Touwei: Head CornerStomach-8 is a local point that helps alleviate headaches, especially those caused by damp conditions. This point is located in line with the angle of the jawbone and about 5 finger’s widths above the level of the eyes.

Stomach-36 Zusanli: Three Miles of the Foot

Acupressure Point - Stomach-36 Zusanli: Three Miles of the FootThis point helps when damp weather induces such things as fatigue, a sensation of heavy limbs, edema (swelling in legs, hands, feet, etc.), lack of appetite, and/or poor digestion. Zusanli helps to tonify the overall energy of the body. It is located approximately 3 thumb widths from the lower border of the knee in the muscle to the outside border of the large bone below the knee.

Stomach-40 Fenglong: Abundant Bulge

Acupressure Point - Stomach-40 Fenglong: Abundant BulgeThis is a distal point that can dispels dampness in the system to help alleviate headaches and the feeling of dizziness that can accompany the physical experience of summer damp-heat. Fenglong is located midway between the lower border of the knee and the outer anklebone, then found in the muscle about 2 fingers widths to the outside of the large bone of the lower leg.

Spleen-2 Dadu: Big Capital

Spleen-2 Dadu: Big CapitalAn excellent point to help resolve damp and damp-heat conditions. In particular, if your limbs feel heavy and weak, breathing is heavy or difficult, and any edema or swelling in the limbs, this is sure to be a beneficial point. Dadu helps to regulate the spleen and it’s action of transforming and transporting fluid, thus benefiting dampness (an excess of fluid). Spleen-2 is located on the inside edge of the big toe just before the ball of the foot.

Spleen-3 Taibai: Supreme White

Spleen-3 Taibai: Supreme WhiteTaibai addresses damp conditions throughout the body, whether it be a sensation of heaviness in the body, fatigue in the limbs, diarrhea, slow digestion, or genitourinary issues (such as itching, cloudy/foul discharges). Spleen 3 tonifies the spleen and its work of transforming and transporting fluids. This point is located on the inside edge of the foot just past the ball of the foot, where the skin of the top of the foot meets the skin of the bottom of the foot.

Gall Bladder-14 Yangbai: Yang White

Gall Bladder-14 Yangbai: Yang WhiteIs a local point for headaches, especially headaches that relate to the sinus pressure or infection and the frontal area of the head. Yangbai is located approximately one thumb’s width above the eyebrow, in line with the pupil.

May peace be upon you!