Pain Relief

Back PainAccording to Wikipedia pain is defined as “…the unpleasant and aversive feeling common to such experiences as a stubbed toe, a headache, a burnt finger, and salt in a wound. Typically, pain is characterized by its intensity, location and duration“. From our point of view pain is a signal that something needs to be addressed. Depending on the cause, pain in the body left untreated can lead to chronic pain.

Again according to Wikipedia Chronic Pain is pain “… persists longer than the temporal course of natural healing, associated with a particular type of injury or disease process”. For people with chronic pain life can become a relentless cycle of suffering. Imagine yourself in a marathon with no sight of the finish line and you have to keep running – you have no option to quit. This must be one of the many feelings that chronic pain suffers experience. This analogy gives you just a hint of the relentlessness and ultimately hopelessness associated with chronic, also often known as ‘untreatable’, pain.

Some of us believe we do not ‘have the time’ to listen to our pain signals or some of us believe our options for natural pain relief, or any pain relief, are limited or non existent. Some people live their lives on pain killing medication believing this is their only option for (back) pain relief. Deadening pain with drugs is helpful in acute situations or for the short term. However, as a long term strategy it often creates more problems than it helps. Well, help is at hand and it is based on the system of acupressure.

Acupressure is an ancient healing art that uses the finger/feet to press points on the body to stimulate self-curative abilities. Acupressure uses the same points as acupuncture. When you think about it, acupressure is based on an instinctive response to pain. For example, when you have a head ache you often rub or hold your head, when you stub your toe or bump yourself you rub or apply pressure to the area, when you have a stomach ache or a stitch you often hold or apply pressure to the place that hurts.

The Western interpretation of how acupressure works is that pressing specific points releases muscular tension in that area which increases blood circulation which aids healing. As we said, acupuncture and acupressure use the same points on the body. There is a massive amount of scientific data that demonstrates why and how acupuncture is effective. Acupuncture/pressure is based on the idea that the body has a meridian system, probably best likened to the nervous system. The meridian system has pathways running throughout the body in a circuit starting and ending in either the hands or the feet. When you lie on the Shakti acupressure mat, points along the meridians are stimulated causing an increased flow of energy throughout those pathways.

Shakti-1The Shakti mat has 6000 points which targets pressure points and nerve endings causing the body to release endorphins and oxytocin – those nice ‘happy feeling’ hormones.

Acupressure/use of the acupressure mat, causes the release of endorphins within the body. Endorphins are our feel-good hormones which trigger a calming and uplifting response in the body. They reduce the sensation of pain and have a positive effect on the emotions. Endorphins are widely believed to have similar pain relieving qualities to morphine, so, it’s easy to see how a session on the Shakti acupressure mat can help someone living with persistent pain. As a result of the endorphins being released, blood pressure decreases and circulation improves. Endorphins also rid the body of acid which is of great benefit in relieving joint pain and digestive disorders.

Oxytocin is the ‘peace and calm’ hormone. It is naturally secreted during breast-feeding, caresses, massage, meditation, when people listen to pleasant music, go for an enjoyable walk, exercise, dancing, riding, eat a good dinner and so on. When levels of oxytocin rise, the levels of stress hormones in the body fall. Oxytocin promotes the repair of damaged or worn tissues and new cells grow where they are needed. Oxytocin raises the pain threshold, lowers blood pressure and decreases anxieties. Oxytocin also increases sexual desire and increases memory. The list goes on and on. Large doses of oxytocin induce drowsiness; it is the body’s own ”happy pill” ie our natural pain relief mechanism. (Kerstin Uvnäs-Moberg, Swedish researcher in the subject).  By naturally increasing the body’s production of oxytocin, you optimise your body’s performance and durability.

So, using the Shakti acupressure mat or bed of nails will assist your body to produce endorphines and oxytocin and you reap the benefits listed above and more. Natural pain relief and increased quality of life in one product. We recommend using the acupressure mat daily for optimal, accrued physical and emotional benefits. Watch out for an article of incorporating the mat into every day living.

To your best health.

Acupressure is an ancient healing art that uses the fingers to press key points on the surface of the skin to stimulate the body’s natural self-curative abilities. When these points are pressed, they release muscular tension and promote the circulation of blood and the body’s life force to aid healing. Acupuncture and acupressure use the same points, but acupuncture employs needles, while acupressure uses the gentle but firm pressure of hands (and even feet). There is a massive amount of scientific data that demonstrates why and how acupuncture is effective. But acupressure, the older of the two traditions, was neglected after the Chinese developed more technological methods for stimulating points with needles and electricity. Acupressure, however, continues to be the most effective method for self-treatment of tension-related ailments by using the power and sensitivity of the human hand.


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