By: Dr. Marcelle MacCallum, TCMD
Runny nose, itchy eyes or sneezing bouts? With Spring in bloom, you may be suffering from seasonal allergies.
Western medicine views seasonal allergies as an immediate hypersensitivity immune reaction produced by lymphocytes interacting with airborne particles such as pollen. Western medicine locates lymphocytes in the blood stream, Peyer’s patches in the gastrointestinal tract, spleen, lymph nodes, and bone marrow.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), acupuncture points located on the Spleen, Stomach, Lungs, Large Intestine, Liver and Kidney meridians are utilized to support the immune response and reduce the painful symptoms involved in an immune reaction. In TCM sweets are harmful to the Spleen, and are often a major factor in the persistence and intensity of seasonal allergy symptoms.
Acupuncture Treats Seasonal Allergies
Acupuncture reduces histamine response and can be considered a valuable additional treatment option for patients with Seasonal Allergy Rhinitis (hay fever).
Patients are asked to score their nose stuffiness on a zero to ten scale (zero meaning no stuffiness and 10 being the most severe). A score may be determined before and after the acupuncture treatment. Patient can also determine the effectiveness of acupuncture treatments by tracking the number of sneezes per day and the number of itching episodes around their eyes.
After an initial series of treatments, patients come in for further treatments on an as needed basis.
It is ideal to go for acupuncture before allergy symptoms set in and before blooming has started.
Treating Seasonal Allergies at Home with Acupressure
Until acupuncture treatments can be done in person, Dr. Marcelle MacCallum, TCMD has combined a variety of acupuncture protocols into this Allergy Relief Routine.
These can be done at home, or on your loved ones while we maintain social distancing, even while the allergy season blossoms forward!
The routine includes two components:
- The Acupressure Allergy Facial Protocol addresses the painful annoying symptoms that presents on the face, the nasal passages, and the head.
- The Acupressure Allergy Body Protocol addresses some of the underlying organ disharmonies that are the root of why the body succumbs to an invasion.
Acupressure Allergy Facial Allergy Protocol
This protocol addresses the different regions of the face, including nose, eyes, eyebrows, forehead and the top and back of your head.
- Work your way up the face starting at the nose
- Apply pressure count to 10, release – this is one set
- Start gentle then increase pressure till you have done 3 sets
- Do all the points on the face bilaterally till they are warmed up
- Then combine the points using your multiple fingers eg: (LI 20.ST 3, LI 19), (Bi Tong, ST 2, ST 3), (ST 2, Yu Yao, TW 23), (UB 2, Yu Yao, TW 23), (Yintang, GB 14, TW 23), (UB 1, ST 8, Du 24) etc.
Nose: ST 3, LI 19, LI 20, Bi Tong
Eyes, eyebrows: ST 2, UB 1, UB 2, Yintang, Yuyao, TW 23
Forehead: GB 14, ST 8, Du 24
Top of head: midline of the scalp to the corner of the hairline. Du 20 to Du 24, UB 3 to UB 8, GB 15 to GB 18. Use all your fingers to get multiple points per channel.
Back of head: at the base of the skull, occiput, and 3 finger widths above on the scalp. Du 15 to Du 17, GB 19, GB 20, UB 9, UB 10. Anywhere there is finger pressure pain, that area/point needs to be massaged gently. These pressure points need to be addressed gently as we do not want to exacerbate this area. Use all your fingers to get multiple points per channel.
Acupressure Allergy Body Protocol
After massaging the points on the face and head to relieve Symptomatic distress, the body protocol addresses distal points. These points support the body’s defense and foundational strength while it is dealing with this external invasion.
These are the points used in the Acupressure Allergy Body Protocol:
Hands and arms: LI 4, TW 3, SI 3, HT 4 to HT 7, PC 6, TW 5, TW 9, LU 6, LU 5, LI 11.
Legs: GB 31, ST 36, ST 40, SP 6.
Feet: SP 5, SP 4, LV 3, LV 4, GB 43.
- Not all of these points need to be done per session. HT 4 to HT 7 calms the emotions, so if you are emotionally stable you don’t need to massage these points.
- These points are contraindicated in pregnancy: LI4, SP6.