4 Ways to use Acupuncture for Stress Management

1. Soothe the Savage Beast: the Liver
In Oriental medicine terms, stress always affects the liver by causing it become stuck, stagnant and eventually very hot and inflamed. Acupuncturists will often use points related to the liver and gallbladder to calm the liver while increasing its flow of energy. These points may be on the body near the actual liver and gall bladder or on the head or feet or anywhere in between, since both of these channels run the length of the body.

2. Get Your Ears Pierced
The French acupuncture tradition has left a rich legacy of using the ear to treat the entire body and have developed a map of the entire body on the ear itself. Their findings, like much of modern acupuncture, have been well-demonstrated scientifically, showing that when the ear point for a particular body part is stimulated, the part of the brain that deal with that body part is activated. For this reason, ear acupuncture, or auricular therapy, as it is sometimes known, treats emotional and stress disorders very effectively. It is so effective that auricular acupuncture is used quite successfully to treat addictions and cravings. You can ask for ear seeds, tiny hard plant seeds that are taped into position on your ear, allowing you to stimulate these powerful acupuncture points whenever you need a lift or help staving off cravings.
The ear seeds can be left in place for up to three days after your acupuncture visit.

3. Get Scalped
Another modern acupuncture system uses thin needles inserted perpendicularly, just under the scalp. The sensation can be quite strong, though not painful. The sensation, if any, may be like mild electricity running through the hair. Acupuncturists can stimulate specific parts of the brain by needling the corresponding area of the scalp. While more commonly used for stroke patients or others with neurological disorders, scalp acupuncture can provide deep relief from stress, especially when combined with more traditional acupuncture points on the body and limbs. Ask your acupuncturist to use scalp points to help with particularly strong episodes of stress.

4. Align Your Chakras
If you have ever taken a yoga class, you are probably familiar with the chakra system. Chakras are centers of energy within the body that do not necessarily correspond to a single organ, but describe the collective function of several organs, and are often closely tied to endocrine function. Esoteric acupuncture is a new system of acupuncture prescriptions that are designed to balance, align, and open the chakras. This system, as the name implies, is far from the mainstream, but can yield powerful results in areas of emotional distress. The aim of esoteric acupuncture is to help you grow personally and spiritually so that you can work with the causes of stress, rather than just ameliorating the symptoms. Ask around and chances are you will find an acupuncturist who practices this specialty
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