By Raven Fon
For years, people have rolled their eyes at traditional Chinese medicine, but things are different today.
This particular method of Chinese medicine has been around for over 2,500 years, and is now globally recognized to treat many health problems, including alleviating stress and anxiety.
Traditional Chinese medicine believes that each individual possesses specific acupressure points throughout their body. These lie along what’s referred to as energy meridians.
Our qi, or life force, flows through these meridians. Acupressure can help stimulate these areas if they aren’t functioning as well as they should be. Chinese medicine has identified twelve of these energy meridians which connect to major organs, as well as help keep the body in balance. The belief is that if one of your energy meridians isn’t working properly, your body isn’t going to work properly either.
If we apply pressure to certain parts of the body, we can help reduce the unpleasant and unfortunate side effects of stress and anxiety. This process is commonly referred to as acupressure, and is similar to acupuncture but involves the use of fingertips instead of needles. If pressure is applied to the CV 17 area, immediate relief is felt.
CV 17 is short for ‘conception vessel 17’, the center of the chest. If you ever feel overcome by stress and anxiety, the middle of your chest will be slightly painful when applying pressure to it. This area, CV 17, feeds into the heart-energy center of the body, and according to traditional Chinese medicine, the heart center carries the body’s emotions. So when a person becomes stressed, this area becomes sore and puts the rest of the body out of sync.
It’s also been theorized that the central location of CV 17 in the upper torso also contributes to balancing the levels of yin and yang energy levels within the body. This can restore the balance to your physical and emotional senses. Those who practice acupressure, believe that any imbalances in our nervous system can be remedied by applying a light amount of pressure to the CV 17, which can even boost our immune system.
Via Power of Positivity
- You can locate the CV 17 area four finger-widths above the base of the breastbone- almost directly in the center of your chest. Chinese medicine also refers to this as the sea of tranquility.
- Place the tips of your fingers inside the small indention in this area. Using gentle pressure, slowly rub up and down the center of your breastbone until you find the right spot.
- Next, sit with your spine straight and upright, and place your palms together with your fingers pointed toward the ceiling. This is called the prayer pose.
- Once you are in position, use the back of your thumb knuckles to apply gentle pressure into the center of your CV 17 for 2 – 3 minutes.
- Close your eyes.
- Inhale and exhale with deep, regular breaths.
- Keep your head upright, but relax your neck and shoulders.
- Also, gently tapping this area with your fingers is a helpful tool to fall asleep at night.
Manipulating the CV 17 pressure area not only helps to alleviate stress and anxiety, it is also useful for relaxing those who have depression, chronic fatigue, post-traumatic stress disorder, or hormonal imbalances, and can be extremely useful during the recovery phase after an injury or surgery.