Acupressure against morning sickness

Two new separate studies have recently documented what acupuncturists and shiatsu masseurs have always known; that acupressure in the right places can relieve or even remove the unpleasant morning sickness in pregnant women.

In acupressure, the body's acupuncture points are being massaged - primarily by using the thumbs, palms, and elbows - instead of using needles.

On the inside of the lower arm right above the wrist line between the two tendons, the acupuncture point of P.6 (Percardium 6) is located. By working on this point, you can relieve or remove morning sickness. The point is most often worked on for 5 - 20 minutes.

One study included a group of healthy women who - besides morning sickness and vomiting - had a pregnancy free of complications. A wrist band was used that put a constant pressure on the acupuncture point P.6.

The results of this group were then compared to a similar group who was given acupressure in a placebo point (a wrong point), and finally, to a group that was not given any treatment whatsoever.

After comparing the three groups, the conclusion was that it was possible to significantly reduce morning sickness by using acupressure.

The acupuncture point P.6 can be supplemented with an acupuncture point on the stomach called M.36. This point also has a good effect on nausea/vomiting and can also be used against bloatedness, menstrual sufferings, and abdominal disorders.

Acupressure is one of the oldest and most widespread treatment methods in the world. The Chinese discovered that disturbances inside the body can be relieved or removed by pressing on certain points on the body surface. The possible applications of acupressure include anything from functional organ disturbances over analgesic treatment to prophylactic measures and are therefore of great health politic interest. In China, clinical experience has shown long ago that acupressure and acupuncture have particular points fitted to protect against certain diseases.

Werntoft, Elisabeth and Dykes, Anna-Karin. Effects of Acupressure on Nausea and Vomiting During Pregnancy. J Reprod Med 2001;46:835-39