Acupressure: The Missing Tool For Your Insomnia Treatment
Do you suffer from insomnia?
Whether you can’t fall asleep or can’t stay asleep, it can be frustrating, exhausting, and debilitating for your health.
If you feel like you’ve tried every trick in the book and nothing works, we’ve got one more tool to try – acupressure.
Acupressure has been around for thousands of years in Chinese medicine. It helps restore balance in your body’s meridians that may be blocked or knocked out of balance.
Your body’s meridians are what carry your body’s energy. You can’t see them, but they bring your brain and organs together to create optimal functioning.
The body has hundreds of acupressure points, but knowing the specific points for insomnia can help you get a better night’s sleep.
Think of acupressure as self-massage. You simply apply pressure to the specific areas that help your overall health as well as sleep patterns. The areas include your feet, neck, and hands.
How to do Acupressure
Anyone can do his or her own acupressure using the following techniques:
- Exert deep pressure to the specific points (discussed below)
- Stay relaxed, breathing deep, and keeping your eyes closed
- Repeat as often as necessary, even multiple times in one day/night
Or you can simply buy an Acupressure Mat and just lie down on it.
The acupressure mat provides the benefits of a deep tissue massage that lowers the 'stress hormone' cortisol while releasing endorphins (or 'feel good hormones'), which help create an overall more positive and relaxed state of mind.
How to use Acupressure Mat for Insomnia
- Lie down on your back against the mat in your bed. We recommend direct skin contact with the mat for 20-40 minutes for the best effect.
- The initial strong sensation of the stimulation spikes will subside after 1-2 minutes as relaxation spreads through the body. A tolerance can be built up by gradually increasing time on the mat. Due to an increase in sensation, you may experience a pleasant, warm sensation.
- Once you reach a deep level of relaxation you are ready to remove the mat and go to sleep. Relaxation before sleep is crucial to achieve deeper and sounder sleep.
Deep sleep helps us produce the growth hormone which is needed to boost our immune system and maintain a youthful glow.
Acupressure Techniques for Sleep
Once you get yourself in a comfortable position and you feel relaxed, try one or more of the following acupressure techniques:
- San Yin Jiao – Start at the inside of one leg, locating the top of your ankle. Measure four finger-widths above that point and exert deep pressure on the area just behind the bone. Massage in circular motions for 4 to 5 seconds.
- Feng Chi – Start by locating the ear bone at the back of your head. Follow that line around until you feel the area on either side of your head where your skull and neck muscles meet. Place your thumbs on each area and lace your fingers together (your thumbs should be facing down). Massage the areas in a circular motion for 4 to 5 seconds.
- Bubbling Spring – Lying on your back, bend your knees so that you can comfortably reach your feet. Curling your toes, locate the indented area in your foot’s sole. Firmly press the area and massage it in circular motions for 4 to 5 seconds.
- Tai Chong – Sitting up, locate the area on the top of your foot where your big toe and the next toe meet. Travel two finger widths from this area, toward your shin. Apply deep pressure to the area, massaging in a circular or up and down motion for 4 to 5 seconds.
Make these acupressure point massages a part of your nightly routine, which should also include other ‘wind down’ rituals, such as a hot bath, reading a book, or meditation.
The idea is to get your body into a comfortable and relaxed position while quieting the mind to help you drift off to sleep. If you do wake in the middle of the night, reapply the acupressure techniques as often as needed.