The techniques used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) mentioned below will all work provided the patient has no substantial health problem like obstruction or tumor.
Acupressure is the most convenient and ideal form of TCM treatment for constipation that can be done at home. All a patient suffering from constipation requires is to let his fingers stimulate specific acupressure points on his/her body. Housewives have been telling stories of a “poop button” that’s 3 finger widths from under the belly button. However, it seems a lot better to say that a constipated individual would require regular and longer acupressure sessions to cure his/her problem.
Here are a few acupressure points that are commonly used to treat constipation:
On the back – Located a couple of finger widths from the backbone on the pelvic bone; with arms bent, utilize thumbs to feel under the lowest rib bone.
Around the belly button – 3 finger widths and left from the belly button, from the aforementioned further three finger widths downwards.
On the arms – Between the index finger and thumb’s fleshy area, on the wrist under the pinky, between the index finger and thumb’s bony area, and, when the arm is folded, on the end of the elbow’s crease.
Having second thoughts about trying acupressure?
Keep in mind that acupressure is founded on the principles of acupuncture. Patients who aren’t responding to acupressure are most likely to respond when needles are stuck into the four acupuncture points around the belly button. Acupuncture’s effect on post surgical constipation was seen on a fluoroscope in which inserted needles on a person’s limbs stimulated movements in the intestines. While Western medical science is unable to explain how and why Traditional Chinese Medicine works, researchers in the field of electro medicine have noticed that acupressure points and meridians do possess levels of electromagnetic energy that non-acupressure points don’t have.
For a more intensive constipation treatment at home that not as invasive as acupuncture, a healing technique known as gua sha can be a viable alternative. Gua sha means to scrape the surface of the skin until petechiae, which are reddish spots that look like sand, appear. Gua sha is widely used in the homes of Southeast Asian countries like Indonesia and Vietnam. In regard to constipation, the practitioner uses a smooth edge instrument such as a spoon lubricated with herbal oil or rice wine to scrape the acupressure points in downward strokes around the backbone and the belly button.
A patient suffering from constipation will first be examined by a TCM practitioner. The practitioner will use TCM diagnostic techniques such as a tongue and pulse examinations to evaluate the symptoms of the patient. The practitioner will assess whether the problem is the result of excess cold, excess warmth, or chi deficiency in the patient’s body. He then rectifies the yin and yang imbalance accordingly, usually recommending herbs to bring back harmony in the body.
For instance, constipation associated with excess heat would not only require herbs to heal the intestines but also herbs to strengthen the kidneys and lungs which control the fluids responsible for smooth bowel movements. Does Traditional Chinese Medicine work in the treatment of constipation? Several clinical studies show that it does.