Life is stressful! In addition to COVID-19 lingering over our heads for the past year now, the regular day-to-day routine can really pack on the stress, anxiety, and uneasiness. This past year certainly has had many people feeling more stressed out and on edge more than ever. With that in mind, taking care of yourself is extremely vital.
When relaxing baths, extra sleep, comfort food, and alone time just aren't cutting it, there are other options to turn to. Acupressure points are one way to relieve stress by using five specific points throughout your body.
Acupressure is a form of traditional Chinese medicine that originated in China. When it comes to acupressure, it is believed that there is a form of energy that flows throughout the human body which can be channeled into great equilibrium within the body, resulting in optimal health. This specific energy is known as "qi," and it is said that the qi flows through the human body along twelve different channels, called meridians.
By placing pressure on these different points, you may be able to find some relief from stress and anxiety. A message gets sent to the brain, and your parasympathetic nervous system is stimulated by pressing on them. These pressure points can trigger the brain to bring down high levels of cortisol levels, which is known to be the stress hormone in the human body. Thus, dopamine and serotonin, the feel-good hormones, are activated and increased.
The Top Acupressure Points to Relieve Stress
While there are many acupressure points, we wanted to put our focus on the most well-known and effective points for relieving stress. Below you'll find the five acupressure points to help you when you're stressed out.
You may often see someone massaging their temples just to get some relief or help with a tension headache. In fact, the cliché idea of a stressed-out person is an individual, at their desk, with their head in their hands, massaging their forehead. Taiyang, which means "sun" in Chinese, is the point in the temple region. It is found about one finger-breadth behind the middle of the end of the eyebrow, closest to the ear, and the outer canthus, which is the corner of the eye.
By placing your fingertips on your temples, you can rub the pressure point in a circular motion. While you do so, breathe in and out slowly for 10 deep and long breaths. After this, you should rest your fingers right on the temple, and hold down on that point for a few more breaths. Then, slowly release your fingers.
A similar area on the forehead is known as Yin Tang, and many get the two confused. This one is right in between your two eyebrows. This can be pressed with your forefinger or thumb and rubbed in a circular motion to release stress and anxiety.
For added relief, use our My Relief Essential Roll On Oil Stick on these acupressure temples points.
Calm, cool, and collected is the goal! A calming pressure point, connected to the kidneys in the human body, is found on the foot. To find this pressure point, apply pressure in the middle of the foot, about 1/3 of the way down the foot from the bottom of the toes and about 2/3 up the foot, starting from the heel. This is around where your arch on your foot starts.
By crossing one foot over the knee on the other leg, apply pressure on that point with your thumb. While breathing deeply, rub that spot in a circular motion. Then, switch feet and repeat!
Above the Ankle
About a palm's distance above the inner ankle on the human body, is a pressure point that is linked to the spleen. Placing pressure on this area helps relieve worry and initiate better sleep patterns, including helping with insomnia.
First, you must sit down and prop your ankle up on top of your knee on your other leg. About 3 inches, or a palm's length above the inner part of your ankle, you should place an ample amount of pressure and rub this area, which is right in the middle of the back of your calf on your leg and your shinbone. From here breathe deeply for a few seconds and then switch to the other leg.
Inside the forearm on the human body, just in between two tendons and a few inches up from the wrist, is another pressure point that relieves anxiety and promotes better sleep. It also is the same pressure point that is known to really calm motion sickness and nausea.
To activate it, press your thumb from the other hand into the pressure point, between the two tends and take some deep breaths. Then, begin moving your thumb in a circular motion while continuing to breathe deeply. Then, switch sides.
The Hand Web
This may be one of the most popular and well-known acupressure points out there! On the human hand, within the web on each hand, is the pressure point associated with the large intestine. By placing pressure on this part, stress-induced headaches can be relieved, along with neck and back pains, and constipation.
First, you must locate this area on your hand and once you've found it, pinch the space in between your thumb and index finger of the opposite hand. While rotating your thumb in a circular motion while placing pressure on the point, breathe in and out slowly. You should not feel pain, but instead, a firm resistance. Then, switch sides, and repeat.
Add our Aculief Wearable Acupressure Clip to help stimulate the LI4 pressure point after you've massaged it for added relief!
This ancient art of healing is excellent to resort to in a pinch! It is important to note that whenever using any form of acupuncture, you should never feel pain. The pressure should be firm and should feel like pressure, but should not feel painful or leave you feeling tender. Several times a day, or as needed, you can place pressure on and rub these acupuncture pressure points to seek relief from stress, which, if left unmanaged, can lead to a wide array of other health issues, such as high blood pressure, fatigue, depression, skin issues, cardiac issues, and weight gain. Armed with this knowledge, you can activage acupressure points anytime you feel stressed out and over time you'll start to notice which help you the most so you can focus on those.