When I was in graduate school studying Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, my friend who grew up in Vietnam, went home for a visit and brought me back a beautiful jade Gua Sha tool. I learned that when my friend was a little girl, she would get a Gua Sha treatment on her neck with a similar type of tool whenever she got sick with a fever. Her grandmother would feel her forehead, look at her tongue, and then forcefully scrape the back of her neck until dark red spots appeared on the skin. Read MoreRead More
The ground can be seen and only rarely interrupted by the exceedingly rare patches of snow and the birds are returning. I think it’s safe enough to say: spring is happening! And with spring comes molds, pollens, and allergens. Many of us find ourselves in itchy situations.
Chinese medicine theory teaches us that Wind, as an elemental factor, carries dis-ease. It makes some level of poetic sense with how windy spring season can literally be. The air around us is carrying more substances this time of year that may enter into us and cause injury.
We’d recommend several steps to help ease the spring time allergies. Read MoreRead More
More than half of women who menstruate have some period pain for at least a couple days each month. This pain associated with menstruation is called dysmenorrhea. For some women, mild dysmenorrhea is a regular symptom of PMS, along with bloating, breast tenderness, mood swings, and fatigue. For others, menstrual pain is so severe it keeps them from doing normal activities for the duration of their period, and may be accompanied by symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and headaches.
Period pain in Chinese medicine is often associated with the diagnosis of Liver Qi Stagnation with Liver Blood stasis. What does this mean? The Liver is in charge of building up the Blood (including menstrual blood), and also ‘coursing the qi’, which means keeping all the qi in the body moving along smoothly. When the period comes, if that Liver Qi can’t move smoothly the Blood becomes ‘stuck’ and this can cause pain, cramping and clotting before and during the period flow.
Painful periods don’t have to be normal. There is a lot that you can do to help your pain right now, and prevent it from coming in the future. Read MoreRead More
PMS can feel like the bad prequel to the even less enjoyable main show of menstruation.
But for those of us who menstruate, there are a few at home acupressure points to tide you
over; at least until your next acu appointment. Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) is a collection of symptoms someone can experience anywhere from 2 to 14 days before their period. Symptoms can include any or all of the above, plus acne, irritability and hypersensitivity, and stool changes, and the intensity ranges from slight to severe.
A very common diagnosis in TCM for PMS is Liver Qi Stagnation. The Liver in TCM is responsible for moving the body’s qi, and when that energy of the body is stuck or stagnated, menstruators then experience typical PMS symptoms, plus cramping and clotty menstrual flow. Read MoreRead More