Itchy, watery eyes, nasal congestion, sinus headaches, and allergies have been running rampant on the Central Coast this season. I’ve seen a steady increase in hay fever symptoms in all patients that suffer from allergies.
The most common causes of allergic reactions are:
- Animal dander
These allergies will trigger symptoms in the nose, throat, lungs, ears, and sinuses.
One recent alarming fact is that we have noticed a steady increase in the number of allergies throughout the years while these allergens have been around the whole time.
So why the sudden increase in allergy symptoms?
One of the theories about this sudden increase in allergies has to do with the body’s level of inflammation, which is the root of most diseases. When the body is already dealing with a high level of inflammation it will respond adversely to allergens, resulting in setting off the bodies immune system into overdrive.
If we can systematically reduce the amount of inflammation in the human body we can also reduce the number of adverse symptoms we may be experiencing from these above mentioned allergens. So how do we reduce the amount of inflammation we have in the body? An anti-inflammatory diet, regular exercise, stress reduction techniques, and the use of acupuncture, herbs, and essential oils is a great natural way to combat not only the bodies systematic inflammation but also the symptoms of the allergies themselves.
For patients that suffer from allergies I usually recommend a customized treatment plan that includes weekly to monthly acupuncture treatments to keep the bodies inflammation at bay while boosting their immune system at the same time.
At home allergy relief
There are also so effective ways to treat your symptoms at home in between treatments for when symptoms seem to really flare up. One technique is acupressure. This is the stimulation of acupuncture points with your fingers to reduce local inflammation in the sinus cavity.
You’re aiming to stimulate six points on the face: Large Intestine 20, Stomach 2 and Bladder 2. All three points are pressed twice, symmetrically on both sides of the face, equaling six points. The picture below shows how it should look when you’re pressing all six face points. You’re going for just outside the nostril, just below the eye (you’ll feel a little indentation in the bone there-that’s the point), and the inner end of the eyebrow.
In addition to point location, you also want to pay attention to the direction you’re pressing.
Large Intestine 20, the points outside the nostrils, should be pressed diagonally upward, as if you’re aiming for your eye on the opposite side. Stomach 2, the points below the eye, should be pressed downward toward the mouth. Bladder 2, the ones on the eyebrow, should be pressed upward toward the top of the head.
Maintaining the right point locations and directions may feel awkward at first but it gets easier with practice. I recommended this technique to, the pinkie, ring and middle finger combo seems to work best. But everyone’s fingers and hand coordination are different, so play around with it and do whatever feels most comfortable for you.
Beyond acupressure I also like to recommend some essential oils for my patients to try at home. Some specific oils that I like to treat allergies are peppermint, eucalyptus, and lemon.
It’s always important to use high quality, organic and therapeutic oils when you are using them for therapeutic purposes. There are a lot of great brands out there, but I carry a high quality, organic line called Snow Lotus, which was created by a fellow herbalist and acupuncturist of mine. All of these oils are available to purchase in my clinic.
Hope you found this post hopeful and found some tools to help keep those allergies at bay!
With much love be well,
Michelle Hamilton L.Ac.