Acupressure Points In Hand: How To Use Them for Different Ailments

Acupuncture and acupressure are both forms of alternative medicine that use the insertion of needles or pressure to stimulate specific points on the body. Acupressure is a form of acupuncture that uses finger pressure instead of needles to apply pressure on certain parts of the body. 

There are many acupressure points in the hand that can be used to treat different ailments and conditions. Identifying the acupressure points in the hand is very important if you want to relieve pain, boost your health and establish a sense of balance. Thankfully, there are multiple hand acupressure points that you can access, and each one has its fair share of benefits. It is important to understand and know where are the locations of the acupressure points in hand because they can help you eliminate many potential health issues and make you feel better.

The Concept Behind Acupressure: How Does It Work?

Acupressure is a practice that has been successfully used in China’s Chinese medicine practice for thousands of years. Acupressure applies similar principles to acupuncture, but instead of using acupuncture needles, in acupressure, you use your own hands to apply firm pressure to certain key points. To improve energy flow, acupressure therapists will use their hands or various parts of their bodies such as fingers, elbows and palms to exert gentle pressure on your hand.

The TCM Theory of ‘Qi’

Some said the pressure exerted on your hands may cause the release of endorphins, which are natural pain-relieving chemicals in the body. Others conceptualize that the pressure may influence your autonomic nervous system, the part that controls involuntary things such as your heart, digestion and breathing. 

According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) theories, the body’s vital energy, or qi, flows along invisible channels called meridians, and there are altogether 14 meridians connecting the organs with other parts of the body. Acupressure points lie along these meridians, and if qi is blocked at any point, it causes pain and ailments to occur along that pathway.

As a result, a TCM practitioner may apply pressure to specific acupressure points on your hand to restore healthy energy flow and the acupoints they choose depends very much on your symptoms. One fun fact: pressure points used by the acupressure professional may be far away from the site where your symptom occurs, because meridians run longitudinally in the body. For example, if you have a headache, the acupressure expert may focus on your foot instead to clear your symptoms. 

What Goes On During A Hand Acupressure Session?

Acupressure is often done by a certified acupuncturist or a certified TCM doctor. During the hand acupressure session, you can stay clothed on a massage table, and then let the practitioner know exactly what issues you want to address, and they will identify what acupoints they need to work on. Once they identify them, the acupressure professionals will use their feet, elbows, palms and fingers to apply pressure to the acupoints found on your hand. Some experts may use massage or stretching.

The acupuncturist may apply pressure to each acupoint for about 30 seconds, holding it steady for up to two minutes. He or she may then gradually decrease the pressure for 30 seconds, repeating the process three to five times. There is usually minimal pain as the professionals in this field will be well-trained to exert the right amount of pressure on specific areas of your hand. Each session can take up to an hour. You can also choose to do it yourself if you have been taught, or you can also refer to the chart that we have below. 

By applying pressure to the points in hand, it is easier to address underlying conditions such as pain, anxiety, arthritis and some digestive conditions. It is important to use this as a way to eliminate any of the aforementioned issues, and multiple sessions are required to achieve the best results. 

Which Health Problems Will Benefit From The Acupressure Points In Hand Technique?

This type of hand therapy is quickly becoming one of the most impressive, reliable, and effective ways to deal with all sorts of health issues. But really, what are the after effects of acupressure? What kinds of health problems will benefit from this particular type of body acupuncture?

Benefits of Acupressure

There seems to be many reports of positive effects and some of the conditions that could benefit from it include reducing the effects of chemotherapy, stress management, vomiting, spinal cord problems, muscle pain and tension, shoulder-hand syndrome, motion sickness, menstrual cramps, headaches, digestive problems, kidney issues and throat problems.

Relevant Studies and Evidence

Although in general, scientific studies have not fully justify the benefits of acupressure, one of the examples of acupressure therapy is this clinical study, showing that acupressure may be potentially beneficial in reducing postoperative symptoms like post-operative nausea and vomiting, pain, and sleep disorders and improving postoperative quality-of-recovery.

In one of the scientific studies, it has even been reported be effective in reducing shoulder pain and improve motor power in hemiplegic patients and patients after stroke. In another study, there is clinical evidence of acupressure being effective in treating patients with constipation and who are also undergoing hemodialysis. 

Scientists in another study have also discovered that applying pressure to acupuncture points on the body can help decrease sleepiness and improve concentration. This is especially true when the pressure is applied to points that are not located in the standard locations that are used to relieve pain and increase energy levels.

Common Pressure Points and Massage Treatments in the Hand

How do you get good results from this treatment method? In general, apply very firm pressure to these stimulating acupoints with your thumb, index finger or middle finger, and start massaging the points in circular motion, with gentle pressure, to improve blood circulation and reduce the muscle tension. There are various acupressure relaxation points all over your hand, and here are some important ones. 

Lung Meridian

You can find this pressure point towards the edge of your palm. It runs from the tip of your thumb to your wrist. If you rub a sore spot on this line, it can help you deal with a sore throat, chills or any type of cold, which is very important.

Heart 7

Heart 7 is a point found on the wrist. You can find it near a small bone connected with your small finger. Applying pressure to this spot will help you deal with heart disease, depression, anxiety and insomnia.

Hand Valley Point

This is one of the pressure points in hand you can find between the thumb and first finger. It is a great acupoint for stress relief or migraine problems. At the same time, you can also massage these points to stop neck, dental and shoulder pain.

Inner Gate/Outer Gate Points

The inner gate is usually in the central part of the wrist and it can help you with abdominal pain, stomach pain or nausea, as well as digestive issues in general. The outer gate point is in the same place, but on the top side of the hand, between two different tendons. This is an acupoint focused on boosting energy and the immune system.

Small Intestine 3

Accessing this acupoint is easy, because it is on the side of your hand, under the little finger and near the large hand creases. People say that this is a great point for relieving chronic pain such as neck pain, headaches and ear aches as well.

Ten Dispersions

The tips of your fingers are the pressure points here. Applying pressure on these points can help you deal with flu symptoms, and it is said to be able to treat epilepsy too. They are great for the eyes and brain too.

Four Seams

You can find the four seams in the larger joints of your finger. The thing to note here is that these points are very helpful when it comes to treating digestive symptoms and gastrointestinal symptoms. They are particularly useful for kids! Additionally, they can be great for treating eye or ear problems.

Hand Pressure Points for Different Ailments

The following image from acupressurepoints.net will show you exactly where to apply the pressure points for different ailments. You can do this physical therapy at home by using your fingers to apply pressure to these different acupoints.

Source: https://acupressurepoints.net

What Precautions Should You Take?

Understanding the acupressure points in hand is very important before you actually start doing it. You also want to understand the effects of acupressure, and also find out if there are any health concerns or common side effects too. Sometimes, acupressure can lead to short-term fatigue, soreness, but also light headedness or even an emotional outburst. However, you would not have to worry about severe health issues. It is all a matter of understanding the process and adapting it accordingly for the best possible outcome. It is considered a good option to relieve you of some mild ailments or chronic pains that you have been experiencing. 

Does Acupressure in the Hand Really Works?

The important thing to keep in mind about the acupressure technique is that it does offer pretty good results, if you regularly do it. Although there are not many scientific evidence to prove the effectiveness of acupressure yet, people all over the world have been using it for a very long time. And yes, they did manage to obtain relief and some health benefits from it.

Of course, the amount of time you conduct self-administered acupressure, what points you address and how many treatment sessions you attend does matter quite a bit. In general, acupressure can be very efficient, especially if you stick to it. However, this is not a substitute for professional medical procedures, which is something to keep in mind.

Acupressure is just one of many Asian bodywork therapies (others include qigong and Tuina, a form of alternative medicine that is similar to shiatsu, a Japanese form of acupressure) that originated in TCM.  It can be combined with many other additional therapy or therapies to enhance the results. These can include abdominal acupressure, fire cupping, moxibustion, Chinese medicine therapy, physical factor therapy, manipulation therapy, routine rehabilitation therapy or some other form of rehabilitation treatment. There are also different kinds of acupuncture, such as fascial-point acupuncture, abdominal acupuncture, auricular acupuncture, and what is known as Chinese hand acupuncture.

Chinese Hand Acupuncture

A related form of therapy is Chinese hand acupuncture (or ‘wrist acupuncture’) but this is often used together with other acupuncture methods, such as body and auricular acupuncture. By needling specific acupuncture points, patients are often relieved of their ailments. The disadvantage of hand acupuncture is that treatment is sometimes relatively painful – hand needling usually lasts up to 20 minutes, with the needling depth somewhat between 0.2cm and 1cm. A skilled acupuncturist will be able to execute hand acupuncture effortlessly and painlessly most of the time, and sometimes, hospitals employ lasers in place of needles for hand acupuncture, and this method is less invasive and almost pain-free. 

Who Should Not Use Acupressure?

Although using acupressure points in hand is a relatively safe method to relieve pain and sore muscles and ailments, there are some people who should be careful. Pregnant women should consult their doctor or gynecologist before using this method because some points could lead to contractions or even abortions. Also, those who suffered from joint pains or diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis should consult their medical specialist before doing it too as it may lead to weakened joints. 

The benefits of this ancient healing art certainly outweighs the disadvantages, if any. Understanding the acupressure points in hand and addressing them wisely can actually help you obtain relief and improve your current health conditions, making you incredibly happy with the process. Yes, it does take some time to make it work, but the benefits can be amazing if you manage everything correctly. Do not hesitate to give it a try, but ideally, you want to work closely with an acupressure expert or a certified healthcare provider that knows how much pressure to apply and what points to address according to your requirements, in order to harness the best results.