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Pressing This Button On Your Body Can Relieve Stress And Anxiety

Pressing This Button On Your Body Can Relieve Stress And Anxiety

For years, some people scoffed at traditional Chinese medicine, but today, this 2,500-year-old practice of traditional Chinese medicine is a globally accepted method of treatment for many health problems, including for alleviating stress and anxiety. In fact, Dr. W. Kenneth Riland, personal physician to former President Richard Nixon, believed that acupuncture would be “one of the greatest contributions that any group of people has made to the future of all medicine.”

Traditional Chinese medicine follows the belief that every person has specific acupressure points all across the body that lie along what’s called energy meridians. A person’s life force, or qi, flows through these energy points and acupressure will help stimulate them if they aren’t functioning up to par. Chinese theory identifies 12 of these energy meridians that connect major organs and keep the body balanced. When one of these energy points aren’t working properly, your body won’t work properly either.

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By applying pressure to certain parts of the body, a person can ease the side effects of stress and anxiety. Commonly called acupressure, which is similar to acupuncture but without the needles, pressure applied to an area called CV 17 provides immediate relief. CV 17 stands for conception vessel 17, the chest center. If you are feeling stressed or anxious, this area will be sore when you apply pressure to it. The CV 17 area feeds into the pericardium energy center of the body, which protects the heart. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the heart is the seat of a body’s emotions and when a person is stressed, this area becomes sore and is out of sync.

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It’s also been explained that because of its location in the center of the upper torso, the CV 17 also balances the levels of yin (reflective, quiet) and yang (action-oriented, energetic) energy levels of the body and will bring your body and emotion and physical sense back in balance. Accupressure believers say that any imbalances in a person’s nervous system can be remedied by applying pressure to the CV 17, even boosting the immune system.

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How To Find CV 17

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    via Power of Positivity

    • The CV 17 area is located four finger-widths up from the base of the breastbone, almost at the center of the chest. It’s also known as the sea of tranquility in Chinese medicine.
    • Place your fingertips in the small indent in this area and gently, slowly, rub up and down the center of the breastbone to find the spot.
    • Then sit so your spine is straight and upright, palms placed together with the fingers pointing upward. This is called the prayer pose.

    What To Do With CV 17

    • Once seated in the prayer pose position, use the back of the knuckles of your thumb to gently press into the center of the CV 17 area for two to three minutes.
    • Be sure to close your eyes.
    • Continue to inhale and exhale deeply and regularly.
    • Keep your head upright, but not tense.
    • Another effective way to do this is to gingerly place the middle fingertip on top of the CV 17, resting your index and ring fingertips just above and below that point.
    • You also can gently tap this area with your fingers, which some say is a helpful manner in which to fall asleep at night.

    How CV 17 Offers Stress and Anxiety Relief

    • First of all, the deep breathing used in this treatment encourages the body to relax.
    • Pressure applied to the CV 17 aids in stress and anxiety relief.

    Not only does manipulating the CV 17 pressure area help in alleviating stress and anxiety, it also helps relax those who have depression, chronic fatigue, post-traumatic stress disorder, hormonal imbalances and during the recovery phase after an injury or surgery.

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    Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

    Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

    There are many reasons why people might scream – they’re angry, scared, or in pain (or maybe they’re in a metal band!). Some might say that screaming is bad, but here’s why science says it’s good for you.

    “For the first time in the history of psychology there is a way to access feelings, hidden away, in a safe way and thus to reduce human suffering. It is, in essence, the first science of psychotherapy.” — Dr. Arthur Janov

    Primal Therapy

    Dr. Arthur Janov invented Primal Therapy in the late 1960’s. It is a practice that allows the patient to face their repressed emotions from past trauma head on and let those emotions go. This treatment is intended to cure any mental illness the patient may have that surfaced from this past trauma. In most cases, Primal Therapy has lead Dr. Janov’s patients to scream towards the end of their session, though it was not part of the original procedure. During a group therapy session that was at a standstill, Dr. Janov says that one of his patients, a student he called Danny, told a story that inspired him to implement a technique that he never would have thought of on his own.

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    How it Started

    “During a lull in our group therapy session, he told us a story about a man named Ortiz who was currently doing an act on the London stage in which he paraded around in diapers drinking bottles of milk. Throughout his number, Ortiz is shouting, ‘Mommy! Daddy! Mommy! Daddy!’ at the top of his lungs. At the end of his act he vomits. Plastic bags are passed out, and the audience is requested to follow suit.”

    It doesn’t end there, though. Dr. Janov said that his patient was quite fascinated with that story, and that alone moved him to suggest something even he believed to be a little elementary.

    “I asked him to call out, ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ Danny refused, saying that he couldn’t see the sense in such a childish act, and frankly, neither could I. But I persisted, and finally, he gave in. As he began, he became noticeably upset. Suddenly he was writhing on the floor in agony. His breathing was rapid, spasmodic. ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ came out of his mouth almost involuntarily in loud screeches. He appeared to be in a coma or hypnotic state. The writhing gave way to small convulsions, and finally, he released a piercing, deathlike scream that rattled the walls of my office. The entire episode lasted only a few minutes, and neither Danny nor I had any idea what had happened. All he could say afterward was: ‘I made it! I don’t know what, but I can feel.’”

    Delving deeper

    Dr. Janov says he was baffled for months, but then he decided to experiment with another patient with the same method, which lead to a similar result as before. The patient started out calling “Mommy! Daddy!” then experienced convulsions, heavy breathing, and then eventually screamed. After the session, Dr. Janov says his patient was transformed and became “virtually another human being. He became alert… he seemed to understand himself.”

    Although the initial intention of this particular practice wasn’t to get the patient to scream, more than once did his Primal Therapy sessions end with the patient screaming and feeling lighter, revived, and relieved of stresses that were holding them down in life.

    Some Methods To Practice Screaming

    If you want to try it out for yourself, keep reading!

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    • Step 1: Be Alone — Be alone. If you live in a place that you can’t be alone, it might be a good idea to talk to your family or roommates and explain to them what you’re about to do and make sure they’re okay with it. If you’re good to go, move on to step 2.
    • Step 2: Lie Down — Lie down on a yoga mat on your back and place a pillow underneath your head. If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can use a rug or even a soft blanket.
    • Step 3: Think — Think of things that have hurt you or made you angry. It can be anything from your childhood or even something that happened recently to make yourself cry, if you’re not already crying or upset. You could even scream “Mommy! Daddy!” just like Dr. Janov’s patients did to get yourself started.
    • Step 4: Scream — Don’t hold anything back; cry and scream as loud as you can. You can also pound your fists on the ground, or just lie there and scream at the top of your lungs.

    After this, you should return your breathing to a normal and steady pace. You should feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted off of you. If not, you can also try these other methods.

    Scream Sing

    Scream singing” is referring to what a lot of lead singers in metal or screamo bands will do. I’ve tried it and although I wasn’t very good at it, it was fun and definitely relieved me of any stress I was feeling from before. It usually ends up sounding like a really loud grunt, but nonetheless, it’s considered screaming.

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    • Step 1 — Bear down and make a grunting sound.
    • Step 2 — Hiss like a snake and make sure to do this from your diaphragm (your stomach) for as long as you can.
    • Step 3 — Breathe and push your stomach out for more air when you are belting notes, kind of like you would if you were singing.
    • Step 4 — Try different ways to let out air to control how long the note will last, just make sure not to let out too much air.
    • Step 5 — Distort your voice by pushing air out from your throat, just be careful not to strain yourself.
    • Step 6 — Play around with the pitch of your screams and how wide your mouth is open – the wider your mouth is open, the higher the screams will sound. The narrower or rounder your mouth is (and most likely shaped like an “o”), the lower the screams will sound.
    • Step 7 — Start screaming to metal music. If you’re not a huge metal fan, it’s okay. You don’t have to use this method if you don’t want to.

    If you want a more thorough walkthrough of how to scream sing, here’s a good video tutorial. If this method is too strenuous on your vocal chords, stop. Also, make sure to stay hydrated when scream singing and drink lots of water.

    Scream into a pillow

    Grab a pillow and scream into it. This method is probably the fastest and easiest way to practice screaming. Just make sure to come up for air.

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    Always remember to make sure that you’re not going to disturb anyone while practicing any of these methods of screaming. And with that, happy screaming!

    Featured photo credit: Sharon Mollerus via flickr.com

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