Camphor Essential Oil in Chinese Medicine
Common Name: White Camphor
Botanical Name: Cinnamomum camphora
Pin Yin Name: Zhāngnǎo
- Apply the Sinus Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Large Intestine 20
- Apply the Sinus Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Stomach 3
- Apply the Sinus Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Gallbladder 14
Camphor is what gives so many healing liniments their “medicinal” smell that resembles the aroma of eucalyptus. It is widely used in topical pain medicines such as our Dit Dat Jow formulas because it opens the acupressure Channels and penetrate to the related, or Collateral Channels as well. Camphor also invigorates the free flow of Blood. In Chinese medicine it is said that one cannot suffer with pain without the presence of some level of Blood Stagnation; the sharper the pain, as with neuralgia, the more severe the Blood Stagnation.
Camphor is also able to expel Internal Wind and pathogenic Dampness. It opens the sensory organs, especially the nose and the brain. Camphor is especially helpful with cold, stiff, arthritic pain and Damp-Bi because of its hot nature. Paradoxically, camphor is anti-inflammatory and helps to relieve inflammation associated with pain although it is Hot in nature; this may be due to camphor’s ability to stimulate Blood circulation. It is considered a purifying substance used in spiritual ceremonies. It has historically been used to prevent infectious diseases as it expels Wind-Cold.
Properties: Hot, acrid-spicy, aromatic
Nature: Penetrating, awakening, dispersing, stimulating, reviving, clarifying, purifying, eye-opening
Diseases, Emotional Imbalances, and Pain Syndromes Treated with Camphor Essential Oil in Chinese Medicine
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, each energetic organ system is assigned to one of the Five Elements. Each element has both physical and emotional symptoms that would indicate imbalances in one or more of the related organ systems. Learn more about the Five Elements here!
Water Element Energetic Organ Systems: Kidney, Urinary Bladder
Wood Element Energetic Organ Systems: Liver, Gallbladder
Fire Element Energetic Organ Systems: Heart, Small Intestine, Pericardium, San Jiao
- Chronic emotional upset
- Low blood pressure
- Opens the Heart Orifices (shock-bipolar disorder)
- Chest heaviness
- Loss of breath (as with congestive heart failure)
Earth Element Energetic Organ Systems: Spleen, Stomach
Metal Element Energetic Organ Systems: Lung, Large Intestine
Plant description: Evergreen tree grown in Asia generally
Part used: Leaves and bark
Safety and Contraindications
- No known cumulative toxicity used topically, but is very toxic used internally
- Dilute to 5% so not to irritate the skin
- Recommendations for topical use only
- Contra-indicated for pregnant or nursing women and children-infants who should only use essential oils under the guidance of their local practitioner
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