Tension headaches are a very common problem, and when they start happening frequently enough to interfere with one’s life, they definitely require treatment! The cause of tension headaches from a biomedical perspective remains unknown, but we do know that most are triggered by or exacerbated by stress, and many involve muscle tension or spasms in the muscles of the scalp, face, neck, or upper back.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions lately about how to boost immunity and stay healthy. Here are some tips from Chinese Medicine about how to keep yourself healthy throughout the year, and how to give your body the most resources possible to fight off any diseases or illnesses.
There is a concept in Chinese Herbal Medicine theory called “Food Stagnation” – you can probably guess what this is. Food Stagnation often occurs after eating too much or too quickly, or eating food that doesn’t agree with your body. Symptoms of food stagnation include an uncomfortable feeling of fullness, bloating, pain in the stomach, nausea, vomiting (if severe), loss of appetite, and constipation. The stuck food can cause our normal digestive Qi (energy) to become stuck, too, leading to additional symptoms. If there is regular food stagnation, over time this can weaken the digestive energy, leading to more chronic symptoms of indigestion and pain.
This blog is part of our ongoing series of posts this month as part of Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness month. We are highlighting various integrative and alternative medicine treatments that can be therapeutic for those suffering from a Traumatic Brain Injury.
Cupping therapy is indicated for various types of acute and chronic pain. Acute trauma from sports injuries or car accidents often leave the muscles in a tense, contracted state and/or create pockets of stagnant blood, which leads to inflammation, pain, and consequently, poor circulation of blood and qi to the injured area.
Therefore, as effective and, in fact, necessary physical exercise is for moving our qi, so too can we exercise our emotions/mind. Qi stagnation closes things down, tightens things up, and slows things down. In the mind, qi stagnation manifests as stress/anxiety, irritability or anger, overthinking, excessive worry, depression, an inability to let things go, to name a few. We can see in these examples that the ‘stuckness’ of the flow of qi through ourselves impacts the way we perceive and interact with the world.
People always ask me why I became an acupuncturist. And I don’t have just one answer.