Acupressure is great for everyone and can be an ideal alternative for people who want to explore traditional Chinese medicine, but have a fear of needles.
In this modality an acupuncturist will diagnose according to traditional Chinese medicine theory, and using their finger pressure, stimulate points along pathways of energy to help heal the body.
For a quick fix, there are also a few overall tonifying points on the body that you or a friend can stimulate in order to help alleviate common aches and ailments. In this series I will give you a common acupressure point and a brief overview, so that you or a partner can give yourself a little DIY at-home acupressure when needed!
An Mian, which translates to “sleep peacefully”, is a set of points that are actually "extra" points, meaning they are not on any of the meridians. An mian is primarily used- you guessed it!-to help achieve restful sleep. I often tell patients to Massage this point if they are having difficulty falling or staying asleep. This set of points may also be used for anxiety, headaches, and vertigo.
An Mian is located on either side of the neck, a little under the lobe of the ear, behind the bony-feeling protuberance. When you find the point, you can stimulate it lightly with pressure from your finger. Some people believe it is best to use your middle finger, or pointer finger. Pressure does not have to be hard to stimulate the point.
There is often an underlying imbalance that will contribute to difficulty sleeping. An acupuncturist can help you find the root of the imbalance. Regular acupuncture is quite effective in the treatment of insomnia, and using acupressure at home is a nice compliment to these treatments.