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Acupuncture for Gastritis

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People who have suffered from gastritis know that it is a very painful and debilitating disorder.  The pain is felt in the upper stomach and eating makes the pain much worse. Gastritis is caused by acid regurgitation and its other symptoms besides the pain include very dark stool, loss of appetite, vomiting and nausea.

When gastritis occurs, your stomach lining becomes inflamed. The inflammation causes an immune reaction in the body since the body identifies the inflammation as a sign of organ injury. Unlike cancer and ulcer which are types of injury or damage in the body, gastritis is just an inflammation in the stomach.

Gastritis can come about due to a number of reasons. Some of these reasons include aging which causes degeneration of the stomach lining, autoimmune disorder such as pernicious anemia, bacterial infection such as H. pylori, chronic bile reflux and continuous use of NSAIDS or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and Tylenol.

Natural alternative treatments such as traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) view the body as a whole and thus use holistic therapies to address the problems in the patient’s spirit, mind and body. TCM theorizes that each human being has a vital energy in the body it calls Qi or Chi. Chi travels throughout the body like blood through energy vessels called meridians . Sometimes the flow of Chi in the body becomes imbalanced in one or more of the 14 major meridians. This can lead to disease and symptoms. TCM sees gastritis as a sign of a problem of an underlying condition. To make a correct diagnosis of the root cause of gastritis and its symptoms, practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine may diagnose a patient depending on an exhaustive examination of the symptoms and signs of the patient, and his environment and diet. Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture are often used in the successful treatment of chronic types of gastritis along with lifestyle and diet changes.  Some of the accompanying symptoms and signs and the differentiation of syndromes that may result in gastritis include:

Stagnation of Stomach Chi

Its symptoms and signs consist of:

Loose stool
Vomiting that eases the pain
Acid regurgitation
Pain and fullness of the stomach

Its causes:

The underlying problem comes from frequent eating of spicy and greasy food, too much eating or irregular food intake. They impair the ability of the body to efficiently metabolize fluids and foods.

Treatment:

TCM practitioners usually prescribe Chinese herbal medicine particularly, Pinellia Decoction, as an adjunct therapy to acupuncture for balancing Stomach Fire.

Too much Liver Chi Attacking the Stomach

Symptoms and signs include:

Stomach pain caused by excessive emotions and sour/ bitter (acid) regurgitation.

Cause:

Depression
Anxiety
Anger
Stress

Over the course of time, these factors can lead to strain on the stomach.

Treatment:

Herbal medicine like Bupleurum powder that’s been modified and acupuncture to relieve liver Chi

Spleen Yang Deficiency

Symptoms and signs include:

Aversion to cold
Loose stool
Intermittent dull pain in the stomach that is relieved by pressure

Cause:

The body constitution of the patient is prone to this condition.

Treatment:

Herbal prescription such as decoction of astralagus that’s been modified and acupuncture for strengthening Middle Jiao

Deficiency of Stomach and Spleen

Symptoms and signs include:

Pain soothed by pressure and warmth
Aversion to cold
Watery regurgitation
Dull pain in the stomach

Cause:

Prlonged illness
Anxiety
Stress
Irregular food intake

Treatment:

Herbal prescription may differ depending on the patient’s needs and acupuncture

Deficiency of Stomach Yin

Symptoms and signs include:

Hiccups
Constipation
Throat and mouth dryness
Hunger sans the desire to eat
Dull pain in the stomach

Cause:

Too much eating of greasy and spicy/hot foods

Treatment:

Herbal prescription of modified decoction and acupuncture for nourishing the Stomach

As mentioned a while ago, gastritis (acute or chronic) is a debilitating disorder that seriously affects a person’s quality of health and life. Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture are great and truly effective natural forms of treatment for relieving the symptoms and pain associated with chronic gastritis. Lifestyle and diet changes, however, are also huge factors that can trigger this condition and so changes in them needs to be done to guarantee complete recovery.

Written by Valerie

June 6th, 2014 at 10:02 pm

Posted in Acupuncture

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