Springtime symptoms are already abundant in my acupuncture practice, here at Cloud 9 Acupuncture. The spring, also known as the Wood Element in acupuncture, governs the muscles, tendons, ligaments and sinews in our body. Spring also has a strong connection to the eyes anatomically speaking as well as figuratively.
This is why I tend to see more “tennis elbow,” back and neck strain, knee pain, headaches, migraines, carpal tunnel or wrist/hand/forearm pain during this time of year.
A few weeks ago, before Baltimore saw a massive blizzard with over 30″ of snow, we had unusually warm and sunny days for December. This resulted in flowers starting to bloom and buds forming and bursting with color as if it were late March or April! Many of us humans felt a little “Spring Fever” around the same time as our flower friends were bursting to see the sunshine once more after their brief winter rest.
The energy of Spring is “up and out,” just like the beautiful flowers are passionately pushing up and out through dirt, earth, sometimes snow, and even pavement to bud and bloom. Like our plant friends, we too feel the sense of being met with lots of heavy obstacles as we move up and out with our Spring plans. Some folks feel it most in traffic, feeling as if you are blocked at every pass, trying to escape the slow and tedious drivers that surround you. Others feel blocked by the utter cold and wet weather that is now upon us, stopping us from feeling quite as enthusiastic about hiking in the woods, taking our bike out, or walking the dog for an extra 20 minutes.
The experience of feeling blocked creates what we cause “Liver Qi (pronounced “Chee”) Stagnation” which usually shows up as increased irritability, sometimes insomnia or restlessness, a tendency for more muscle cramps and spasms, as well as headaches or migraines. For women, all PMS symptoms are thought to be caused by Liver Qi Stagnation, easily treated with one simple acupuncture point on the top of your foot called Liver 3, or Happy Calm.
Spring is an excellent time to keep your muscles warmed up and limber, walking for an extra 10 minutes will make a big difference in your health during this time of year.
Many folks take advantage of the sauna or steam room at their gym to increase cardiovascular circulation. At home, a warm Epsom salt bath will also provide benefit to sore and stiff muscles and tendons. The Epsom salts pull lactic acid out of the muscles while allowing your body to absorb Magnesium through the skin after soaking for 20 minutes. Magnesium, Potassium, and Calcium are the key nutrients necessary for a healthy muscle contraction (helping to prevent muscle cramps and spasms.)
At Cloud 9 Acupuncture, we combine an Infrared Heat Lamp, Flash Fire Cupping, Gua Sha and Acupuncture to provide relief to our patients.
Don’t forget your springtime Tune Up!