According to TCM, there are five main causes of insomnia:
1. Mental stress decreasing vital qi and blood, causing heart-spleen deficiency
2. Palpitations, stress accompanied by uneasiness, leading to imbalance of heart-kidneys
3. Depression, liver qi imbalance, irritability, fear and nervousness leading to heart-gallbladder deficiency
4. Poor diet causing indigestion and spleen imbalance
5. Dampness and phlegm with chest congestion
One of the simplest ways to treat insomnia in TCM is self massage. Try the following techniques for a better sleep. In addition, change your diet and relieve mental stress.
The first three techniques can be done any time of day:
Warm the hands by rubbing palms together. Rub the face as if washing it 10-20 times with warm palms. Gently massage acupoint Yintang between the eyebrows. Do this, massaging in an upward direction, alternating with each middle finger 30 times. Finish by massaging along the eyebrows out to the temples 3 times.
Massage the auricles in front of and behind the ears with thumb and index finger 20 times in a downward direction. Repeat the same movement on the earlobes 30 times.
Press and knead Anmian acupoints behind both ears in the depressions 15 times with index fingers. Apply a little more pressure to massage the outer side of the sternocleidomastoid muscle with four fingers, 20 times in a downward direction. Do this slowly.
Do the next two techniques before going to bed.
Concentrating on counting repetitions of each massage will aid in focusing the mind and relieving stress to prepare for sleep.
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