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Acupressure Points and Finger Pain

In traditional Chinese medicine, pain in the extremities, especially when it occurs in the joints, indicates congestion in the flow of qi, or vital life energy. Acupressure can help by restoring the abundant flow of qi, which in turn can reduce inflammation, warm the tendons and ease pain in your fingers. Consult your doctor if your pain is severe or recurring.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Theory

Your body derives qi from two main sources, according to TCM: food and your environment. Repetitive strain and injuries to the fingers can also block the smooth flow of qi.

Additional Causes

TCM adds emotional stresses to the list of potential causes of pain anywhere in the body, notes Teeguarden. Fear, anger and frustration are emotions that can overtax the kidneys and liver. The kidneys are the organ responsible for drawing qi from our immediate environment, while the liver governs the smooth flow of qi. Any injury to either of these organ systems can cause problems in the joints and tendons, including the fingers.

Method

Acupressure works by stimulating the flow of qi along the energy channels. Pressure points sit all along these channels, where they act like valves governing the movement of qi. If your fingers are tender, the good news is that you don’t have to work on them directly in order to gain the benefits of acupressure. 2

Key Points

If your fingers are swollen and hot as well as painful, it’s a sure sign that energy is trapped there, observes Shoshanna Katzman, vice president of the National Qigong Association and author of “Qigong for Staying Young.” Your best bet is to massage the kidney channel 3. This channel loops around the ankle bone on the inside of your leg. Probe these areas until you find a point that feels sore or tender. Press and hold each of these points for a minute or so, then do the other ankle. If your fingers are too sore to press the points, use the eraser end of a pencil.

Considerations

Some conditions are too severe for you to treat with self-administered acupressure. If your finger pain is intense or long lasting and your doctor has ruled out serious injury, you might benefit from seeing a TCM practitioner. A professional acupressure therapist or acupuncturist can give you a complete TCM diagnosis, deeply stimulate any relevant pressure points and recommend a dietary protocol that can help you restore the smooth circulation of qi to your fingers.

The Wrap Up

In traditional Chinese medicine, pain in the extremities, especially when it occurs in the joints, indicates congestion in the flow of qi, or vital life energy. Consult your doctor if your pain is severe or recurring. The kidneys are the organ responsible for drawing qi from our immediate environment, while the liver governs the smooth flow of qi. Your best bet is to massage the kidney channel. A professional acupressure therapist or acupuncturist can give you a complete TCM diagnosis, deeply stimulate any relevant pressure points and recommend a dietary protocol that can help you restore the smooth circulation of qi to your fingers.

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