Tagged Acupressure

Natural Morning Sickness Remedies: EFT Tapping

Ok, I’ll be honest… The technique I’m going to share in this article is one I’m not particularly crazy about. Proponents of EFT (or Tapping, as it’s often called on the internet) claim it can cure everything from phobias and emotional traumas to dyslexia and warts. Usually, anything that claims to be a panacea of that magnitude leaves me a little skeptical, unless there’s a decent body of hard science to back it up. Most of the “evidence” of EFT’s usefulness is solidly anecdotal and I have yet to see any real proof of its effectiveness.

That being said, I do know people who swear by its ability to short-circuit physical and emotional patterns that won’t respond to any other treatment. When I was searching for relief from my own early pregnancy symptoms I came across several websites that promoted EFT as a “cure” for morning sickness. Willing to try anything once, I decided there wouldn’t be any harm in setting my skepticism aside and giving it a shot.

Now, I’m usually someone who is pretty level-headed and able to stay calm in almost any situation. But when I was still trying to get a handle on my morning sickness symptoms, I definitely had moments in which I started freaking out over the idea of not being able to work (something that would’ve destroyed my new brand new and still struggling business) or even over the irrational thought that I would never again just feel normal. What I found was that EFT seemed to lessen my morning sickness to some degree when it was at its worst and I was starting to feel panic-y.

Will EFT work for your morning sickness symptoms? I’m not making any promises with this one, but I thought I would include information on the technique in case you’re at the point that I was and you’re willing to try anything.

What is EFT?
EFT involves using your fingers to tap on specific acupuncture points located on the hands, face and body while reciting affirmations out loud. (One of the points used is KD27 which I wrote about in a previous article. Click here to read it. This is the best point for morning sickness-related nausea and stimulating it might have something to do with EFT’s effect on morning sickness symptoms.) Proponents says it “resets” the body’s energy circuits (this is NOT an idea found anywhere in Traditional Chinese Medicine or acupuncture, by the way, even though EFT practitioners often claim it’s based in TCM) and can cure all manner of ailments from mental-emotional disorders to physical diseases.

EFT How To:
The founder of EFT offers a free (if long-winded) tutorial online which does a much better job of outlining the technique than I could possibly manage here. Click here to access the free tutorial. (Just fyi, there are a million websites online that are charging for this exact same, or very slightly modified, information. Please don’t get suckered into paying for an ebook or video course on EFT when the same information is freely available to you.)

Suggested EFT affirmations:
(These will make sense after reading the tutorial.)
“Even though I have morning sickness, I deeply and completely accept myself”.
“Even though I have this nausea, I deeply and completely accept myself”.
“Even though I have this aversion to smell, I deeply and completely accept myself”.

You can substitute any other symptoms specific to you (specific food aversions, vomiting, digestive tract irritation, etc). I also suggest running through all of the points three times without stopping for each affirmation you decide to use. Once you’re done, assess how you’re feeling and repeat the process as necessary.

Have you tried using EFT for morning sickness? Did it help? Let me know in the comments below!

Natural Morning Sickness Remedies: DIY Acupuncture / Acupressure

As an acupuncturist, it probably comes as no surprise that I would recommend acupuncture as the perfect remedy for morning sickness. I’ve been using acupuncture to treat nausea and vomiting for years and there are many good points that can be used for that purpose.

One point that’s commonly recommended for morning sickness is called P6 (or Neiguan) and is located a couple of inches above the wrist on the inside of the arm. Many people even recommend Sea-Bands for morning sickness which are bands made to combat motion sickness and are designed to stimulate this point.

While P6 is a great all-purpose point for nausea, it’s not the best choice for morning sickness specifically. There is another point called KD27 (or Shufu) that is a much better (if lesser known) option. This is the point I credit with keeping me sane during my first trimester… While it didn’t completely eliminate my nausea, wearing tacks designed to constantly stimulate this point kept my discomfort to a minimum and relegated my morning sickness to the evening hours, allowing me to work comfortably all day. If I took the tacks off for too long, I’d be hit with all day queasiness that would make me want to curl up in bed all day and hide.

While I strongly recommend seeing an acupuncturist to locate this point properly (see www.POCAcoop.com to find a low-cost community acupuncture clinic near you), you can locate and stimulate these points on your own if that’s not a possibility.

How to locate KD27:
To locate the point, stand in front of a mirror and locate your clavicle (the horizontal bone that runs along the top of your chest and connects your breastplate to the top of your shoulders). Feel along the top of the clavicle toward the center of your chest until you feel the place where the clavicle meets the breastbone on each side. Now move your fingers down and slightly outward until you feel a slight indentation where the bottom of your clavicle meets the breastbone. Press around in this area until you find a a point that is more sensitive than the rest of this area. The sensitive point in this indentation is KD27.

How to stimulate Kd27:
There are several ways to stimulate this acupuncture point.

First, you can use basic acupressure techniques. When feeling nauseated, locate this point and use the tip of your index finger to rub it firmly, using a small circular motion. You can also press on the point, applying firm pressure for at least 30 to 45 seconds. Acupressure at this point may help relieve acute nausea, but will probably not do much to prevent feelings of morning sickness unless you are stimulating this point constantly throughout the day.

The next most effective technique is to apply seeds or beads that will keep constant pressure on the points. These seeds (commonly called “ear seeds” since they’re often used to stimulate points on the ear) are available through acupuncturists, or they can be ordered on Amazon. Traditionally the seeds used by acupuncturists are from the vaccaria plant and are attached to a paper or woven adhesive backing, similar to a band-aid. Some acupuncturists now use beads made of gold, silver, or even magnets instead of vaccaria seeds, although I prefer the traditional seeds myself. These seeds can be applied to KD27 and worn for extended periods, then replaced when the adhesive backing comes loose from the skin.

The third option, which is by far the most effective, is using tiny acupuncture tacks that pierce the skin and can also be worn long term. Similar to vaccaria seeds, the needles are attached to an adhesive backing and can be replaced when the adhesive starts to lose its stickiness. Although I highly recommend having tacks initially placed by an acupuncturist (you can replace them yourself after your initial treatment), they are also readily available on Amazon.

You may feel a small pinch when the tacks are first applied, but they are completely painless once in place. Although infection at the needling site is extremely uncommon (I’ve never seen an infection from acupuncture needles or tacks during my ten years in practice), the skin should be wiped clean with alcohol to remove bacteria before inserting the tacks.

Each of these methods can be used continuously until morning sickness begins to subside, usually around 12 to 14 weeks.

Have you tried using acupuncture or acupressure for morning sickness? Did it work? Let me know in the comments below!