Acupressure for Neck Pain
Acupressure works on the same system as acupuncture in that it applies therapy to specific meridians on the body in order to unblock Chi or energy. Although these meridians often have no anatomical connection to certain medical
conditions it has been demonstrated, through the use of brain imaging that they do elicit responses in line with the teachings of traditional Chinese medicine (1).
A variety of acupressure gadgets exist for treating many types of neck pain (back pain too), including foot rollers, massagers, pressure pads and mats which you can stand or lie on. Particularly popular in Sweden and other parts of western and eastern Europe, but relatively new to the market in the US is an acupressure mat called the Spoonk Rider that can be incorporated into daily routines relieving stress and tension in the neck and back in fairly short sessions (see www.spoonkspace.com).
Acupressure massages have been suggested to be more effective at relieving back pain than traditional Swedish-style massage therapy (2). Again, it is important to let the therapist know of any underlying medical conditions and considerations to avoid exacerbating an existing problem.
- Pariente, J., Lewith, G.T., White, P.J., (2005), Investigating acupuncture using brain imaging techniques: the current state of play, Evidence Based Complementary Alternative Medicine, Oxford University Press, Vol 2., no.3, pp.315. PMID 16136210.
- Furlan, A.D., Imamura, M., Dryden, T., Irvin, E., (2008), Massage for low-back pain, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2008, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD001929. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001929.pub2