Alternative Medicine Resources

Bringing You Natural & Effective Health Alternatives

Chinese Herbal Therapy and Acupuncture can Dramatically Reduce High Blood Pressure

without comments

A third of the population of the United States suffers from high blood pressure, sometimes called hypertension. This seemingly ubiquitous condition has spread primarily because of a sedentary lifestyle and increased stress. The good news is that holistic therapies such as acupuncture can assist n the betterment of your overall health and in the management of high blood pressure.

What Is High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)?

High blood pressure is a rise in blood pressure above normal levels, suggesting a rise in heart muscle contraction and/or a rise in vascular resistance. A person with normal blood pressure would have a measurement of 120/80 mmHg. Hypertension is a state in which the blood pressure goes over 140/90 mmHg. Hypertension is grimly known as “the silent killer” since this condition usually gives out few symptoms before it turns fatal. If not treated, hypertension can result in a high likelihood of kidney failure, heart attack, and/or strokes.

There are two types of hypertension: primary and secondary hypertension. People who suffer from primary hypertension are unaware of the cause of their condition. Secondary hypertension sufferers, on the other hand develop their condition due to various factors including side effects of medication, cancer, endocrine problems, and kidney diseases.

Modern Western medicine treatments for hypertension are long-term and involve the use of pharmaceutical drugs coupled with lifestyle changes. A combo of ACE inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, dopamine derivatives, bête blockers, and diuretics are prescribed to help manage the blood pressure. Other ways to control hypertension is by regular exercise, eating a healthy salt-free diet, cessation of tobacco and alcohol use, and proper management of stress.

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture originated in China over 5,000 years ago. It is a system of holistic medicine and along with Chinese Herbal therapy, is one the most important modes of treatment in Chinese Medicine. During an acupuncture treatment procedure, sterile filiform needles are used and inserted into points on the skin to induce a normalizing effect on the body. These points are called acupuncture points or acupoints, for short and they are located on the surface of the skin just above underlying energy channels known as meridians. Meridians connect the acupoints to specific vital organs in the body. When a needle is inserted into skin a light electric sensation is generated that stimulates the associated meridian.

Time and time again, acupuncture has proved to be clinically effective in treating a wide range of health conditions even if the exact mechanisms as to how it works are not yet fully understood. It is an excellent treatment for pain and painful conditions. In fact, it is oftentimes used in lieu of anesthesia in surgical procedures. The potency of acupuncture highlights its significant physiological effects. However, more clinical studies need to be done to validate the clinical effectiveness of this treatment on other health issues.

How Does Acupuncture Treat Hypertension?

There is no description of hypertension in ancient Chinese medical texts. Chinese medicine accounted for the different physiological processes that surrounded the condition. In Chinese medicine, there are a number of physiological relationships existing between each of the internal organs. Any disturbance to these relationships can result in a rise of certain patterns of disease. Through traditional Chinese medicine diagnostic tools such as listening of the patient’s symptoms and signs, palpation of the pulse of the radial artery and the observation of the tongue of the patient, an acupuncturist can determine the exact pattern diagnosis. From there, the acupuncturist can treat the right combination of acupoints to balance the body.

Usually, Chinese medicine considers hypertension the result of a disharmony of the Liver organ. It should be noted that in Chinese medicine, when we talk about the Liver (or any vital organ) we are not necessarily referring to the liver as a physical organ in the body. In Chinese medicine, the Liver is seen as the organ responsible for the normalization of Blood and the smooth flow of Qi (pronounced chee)i n the body. Oftentimes, acupuncturists diagnose Kidney and Liver Yin Deficiency, Liver Qi Stagnation, and/or Liver Yang Rising as the most common patterns causing high blood pressure.

Kidney and Liver Yin Deficiency – This pattern of disharmony develops when the body’s yin energy begins to weaken due to aging. The yin energy of these organs literally start to dry up. When this happens, there is not enough yin to balance and contain the yang energy of the body. The result is the heat rising up, which consequentially raises blood pressure. Kidney and Liver Yin Deficiency causes several types of age-related symptoms, including menopause. Acupuncturists treat the Liver 3, Kidney 3, and Spleen 6 acupoints to increase the cooling capacity of yin energy of the body.

Liver Qi Stagnation – A stressful lifestyle often results in this type of pattern of disharmony. Typical symptoms include PMS, tight muscles, digestive disorders, agitation, and sensation of distension in the head. The tight muscles constrict the body causing added resistance to blood and energy flow. Acupuncturists select the Liver 3 and Large Intestine 4 points to treat this pattern. This combination of acupoints contains analogous locations on each foot and hand producing a powerful circulation that is able to destroy the blockage to the flow of blood and energy.

Liver Yang Rising – This pattern is due to an unexpected upward movement of Yang Qi to the face and head. A bitter taste in the mouth, headaches, sudden dizziness, red eyes, and anger are some of the symptoms of Liver Yang Rising. From this pattern, emotions that are hard to control can come about. It is important to subdue the rising Qi by needling the acupoints Stomach 36, Liver 2, and Kidney 1. All these points are found in the lower legs and feet, which force Yang energy to go downward.

Supplemental Information

Besides the aforementioned acupuncture points, a good number of extra points are selected as well to help manage the high blood pressure and regulate blood pressure. Many acupoints on the ear are treated and they oftentimes produce quick results and are very effective in managing high blood pressure and normalizing blood pressure. These include bleeding points on the backside and tip of the ear. These ear acupoints are usually included in combination with the aforementioned body acupoints to boost the effect of the therapy.

The acupuncture point Stomach 9 found in the neck adjacent to the carotid artery can instantly lower the blood pressure and is very helpful in controlling blood pressure during moments of emergency. Acupuncturists seldom treat this point bilaterally because it can lead to a state of low blood pressure (hypotension) because of its ability to lower blood pressure very quickly.

Acupuncture Treatment to Help Manage High Blood Pressure in Saratoga Springs

Acupuncture treatments done on a regular basis can help alleviate the symptoms of several kinds of health issues as well as help balance the disharmonies of your body. Receiving acupuncture treatments several times a week for the initial few weeks may be required to properly manage hypertension. Once your blood pressure has been stabilized, the number of treatments can be reduced. Acupuncture treatments can be a way to lessen or even stop the intake of your high blood pressure medication, under the guidance of your doctor, of course. Nowadays, the use of integrative forms of treatment is increasingly being adopted by doctors on hypertensive patients who desire to minimize or avoid the longstanding side effects of pharmaceutical medications.

The use of acupuncture treatment along with Chinese Herbal Therapy greatly augments the effectiveness of hypertension treatment. Also, only receive treatment from a licensed acupuncturist.

Written by Valerie

March 26th, 2016 at 8:54 am

Posted in Acupuncture

Tagged with