Aroma Acu Therapy

Aromatherapy Acupuncture-Acupressure Point Therapy

essential oils for acupuncture acupressure pointsAroma Acu Therapy is becoming increasingly popular with a recent influx of studies being published (see below) demonstrating the effectiveness of this self-care modality. This practice is based on Chinese medical theory which has been employed for thousands of years. There are specific energetic associations of botanicals and their ability to stimulate, direct, and activate Qi. Chinese materia medica's classify herbs and their influence on specific areas of the body. Essential oils are classified in the same way and are applied to corresponding acu-points where they are absorbed by the skin into the bloodstream, acupuncture points, and acupuncture channels. Diluted pure essential oils can be applied to acu-points prior to acupuncture needle insertion or acupressure application by licensed acupuncturists for a synergistic treatment affect, or can be applied to acu-points as a stand-alone self-care treatment by patients.

Dr. Browne realized that applying essential oils to acupressure points was messy and time-consuming for both practitioner and patient self-care application. Therefore, she developed solid Aroma Acu-sticks® decades ago that are not only convenient, but incredibly affordable when compared to purchasing individual pure essential oils to activate acupuncture points. In clinic she was able to instruct patients on how to apply the Aroma Acu-sticks® to acu-points between treatments leading to fewer required acupuncture sessions for patients. This transformed an unsustainable modality for a busy acupuncture practice into a viable healing method. Additionally, this practice involves patients in their own recovery which in itself has been shown to result in better therapeutic outcomes (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3964421/). Because Aroma Acu Therapy easily lends itself to patient self-care, Dr. Browne put together ailments protocols for hundreds of conditions linked here. She also wrote individual pages for acupuncture point uses where one can find her videos showing the location of each point. These efforts have taken years, but allow lay-people to effectively apply essential oils to acupuncture points.essential oils for acupuncture-acupressure points

Essential oils work on the same energetic plane as acupuncture-acupressure stimulation and carry a resonation of healing intent in the same way as a needle or pressure would. The essential oils activate the potential of the development or amalgamation of peptides much as a needle insertion would to communicate healing potential of the intended acu-point in the physical body or mind. This stimulates the central nervous system releasing harmonizing neurological and/or endocrine chemicals into the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These biochemical changes stimulate the body's natural healing abilities and promote physical and emotional well-being. The healing potential is magnified by the combination of the refined influence of the essential oils and the acu-points' affect.

By pairing the correct aroma blend with the correlating acupoint one will initiate energetic, emotional, and physiological shifts in the body that are gentle, yet profound. This therapy targets the “root” causes of ailments often based on organ-level imbalances. Aroma Acu Therapy is intended to be implemented as part of a larger wellness plan and healthy lifestyle habits to address chronic conditions. One can expect gentle shifts with a gradual lessening of intensity and frequency of ailment symptoms over time with regular use similar to what one would experience by receiving regular acupuncture treatments. Our Aroma Acu-sticks® activate acupuncture points on the related channels and also work to clear blockages of the corresponding channels, or meridians, that cause pain and immobility.

Applying essential oils to acupuncture points is not a novel therapy; Dr. Browne started making her Five Element Acu-sticks back in 1998. However, multiple studies have been published on the National Institute of Health (NIH) website and books have become available on the subject recently boosting the popularity of Aroma Acu Therapy. Some have asked what the difference is between Aroma Acupoint Therapy and simple aromatherapy. In other words, why wouldn't you just take a bath with lavender essential oils and let it activate all of the points rather than applying it to specific acupuncture point? For one who has no understanding of traditional Chinese medicine this is a reasonable question; however, any doctor of acupuncture knows that the most skilled master acupuncturist will use the fewest possible acu-points creating a focused treatment protocol leading to the most profound healing outcomes. Utilizing too many acupuncture points scatters the Qi and does not send clear communication to the body as to the intent of the treatment when activating individual acupuncture points. Each specific acu-point serves different needs and addresses different symptoms and indications. That's not to say that a lavender bath is not useful, it's just not tapping in to the powerful healing potential of the acupuncture points, channels, and connected energetic organ systems.

Massage therapists can earn an advanced certification and CE credits with Dr. Browne as described linked here!

herb leaves

 

 

References

Yang MH, Lin LC, Wu SC, Chiu JH, Wang PN, Lin JG. Comparison of the efficacy of aroma-acupressure and aromatherapy for the treatment of dementia-associated agitation. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Mar 29;15:93. doi: 10.1186/s12906-015-0612-9. PMID: 25880034; PMCID: PMC4381454.

Tang WR, Chen WJ, Yu CT, Chang YC, Chen CM, Wang CH, Yang SH. Effects of acupressure on fatigue of lung cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy: an experimental pilot study. Complement Ther Med. 2014 Aug;22(4):581-91. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2014.05.006. Epub 2014 May 20. PMID: 25146059.

Shin BC, Lee MS. Effects of aromatherapy acupressure on hemiplegic shoulder pain and motor power in stroke patients: a pilot study. J Altern Complement Med. 2007;13:247–52. doi: 10.1089/acm.2006.6189. 

Tang WR, Chen WJ, Yu CT, Chang YC, Chen CM, Wang CH, Yang SH. Effects of acupressure on fatigue of lung cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy: an experimental pilot study. Complement Ther Med. 2014 Aug;22(4):581-91. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2014.05.006. Epub 2014 May 20. PMID: 25146059.

Chung M, Choi E. [A comparison between effects of aroma massage and meridian massage on constipation and stress in women college students]. J Korean Acad Nurs. 2011 Feb;41(1):26-35. Korean. doi: 10.4040/jkan.2011.41.1.26. PMID: 21515997.

Yuen, Jeffrey. Materia Medica of Essential Oils: Based on a Chinese Medical Perspective. 2002

Fischer AM, Holmes P, Bahar YZ, Vacca S, Goldberg S, Gold MA. Aroma Acupoint Therapy for Symptom Management with Adolescent Patients: Early Experiences from School-Based Health Centers. Med Acupunct. 2020 Oct 1;32(5):287-292. doi: 10.1089/acu.2020.1447. Epub 2020 Oct 19. PMID: 33101573; PMCID: PMC7583319.

Nam MJ, Bang YIe, Kim TI. Effects of abdominal meridian massage with aroma oils on relief of constipation among hospitalized children with brain related disabilities. J Korean Acad Nurs. 2013 Apr;43(2):247-55. Korean. doi: 10.4040/jkan.2013.43.2.247. PMID: 23703602.

Yip YB, Tse SH. An experimental study on the effectiveness of acupressure with aromatic lavender essential oil for sub-acute, non-specific neck pain in Hong Kong. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2006;12(1):18–26

Chen JH, Chao YH, Lu SF, Shiung TF, Chao YF. The effectiveness of valerian acupressure on the sleep of ICU patients: a randomized clinical trial. Int J Nurs Stud. 2012 Aug;49(8):913-20. doi: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2012.02.012. Epub 2012 Mar 3. PMID: 22391336.

Fung JKK, Tsang HW. Management of behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia by an aroma-massage with acupressure treatment protocol: A randomised clinical trial. J Clin Nurs. 2018 May;27(9-10):1812-1825. doi: 10.1111/jocn.14101. Epub 2017 Dec 4. PMID: 28986942.

Yip YB, Tse SH. The effectiveness of relaxation acupoint stimulation and acupressure with aromatic lavender essential oil for non-specific low back pain in Hong Kong: A randomised controlled trial. Complement Ther Med. 2004;12(1):28–37

Holmes C, Hopkins V, Hensford C, MacLaughlin V, Wilkinson D, Rosenvinge H. Lavender oil as a treatment for agitated behaviour in severe dementia: a placebo controlled study. Int J Geriatric Psychiatry. 2002;17:305–8. doi: 10.1002/gps.593.

Holmes P. Essential Oils In Chinese Medicine  Acupuncture Today – October, 2009, Vol. 10, Issue 10

Wakefield, E. Essential Oils, Part Two: Additional Attributes, Guidelines for Use, and Suggested Applications Acupuncture Today – July, 2005, Vol. 06, Issue 07

Yip YB, Tse SH. The effectiveness of relaxation acupoint stimulation and acupressure with aromatic lavender essential oil for non-specific low back pain in Hong Kong: a randomized controlled trial. Complement Ther Med. 2004 Mar;12(1):28-37. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2003.12.003. PMID: 15130569.