I knew the ear contained points to all the organs and systems in the body, like the soles of the feet do in reflexology, and I featured a post recently on using ear massage as a way of relaxation and self-help. But I didn’t know there was one spot on the ear specifically for relieving stress (plus helps with circulation, energy, pain relief and inflammation!) until coming across the following information. Read on to find out about the Shen Men spot and other points that can help you be a happier, healthier you…..
In a recent television show about healthy living on Russian national television, a doctor of medical science and psychiatry, Mark Sandomirsky, advised his patients to relieve stress using this easy technique.
The source of stress often varies and people almost always experience it in different ways. Once the stress sets in, most people however, are left feeling uncomfortable and anxious, followed by a sensation of heaviness or even pain in parts of the body.
The first step to releasing stress is to rid yourself of the the negative emotions. Don’t bottle them up within yourself. After doing so, next is to remove the physical effects of the stress. This is where the psycho-reflexology comes into play. Our body has certain anti-stress points and all that needs to be done is simply massage these points to relieve the stress.
The ancient Chinese referred to this point as Shen Men or “The Gate of Heaven.” Shen Men is a anti-stress point that decreases stress, boosts energy flow, and strengthens the overall health of the body.
This acupressure point also reduces inflammation and can relieve pain in almost every part of the body. Massaging the Shen Men point will relieve stress and is located in the centre of the upper third of the ear (refer to picture/chart below for exact location).
Dr Sandomirsky advices:
- Using a cotton bud press this point and gently massage it. Breathe deeply.
- Then listen to your body carefully.
- Keep breathing deeply.
- When you inhale look to the left, and on the exhale look to the right.
- You will feel how your body calms down.
- Massage this point using your fingers.
- Massage it well every time you are stressed.
- You can also repeat this technique every night before you go to bed.
Right after reading about the Shen Men I did some exploring and found this post that went into much more detail about using points on the ear for various health conditions….
Auricular Acupuncture – Master Points
Point Zero (Ear Center, Point of Support, Umbilical Cord, Solar Plexus)
This master point is the geometrical and physiological center of the whole auricle. It brings the whole body towards homeostasis, producing a balance of energy, hormones and brain activity.
It supports the actions of other auricular points and returns the body to the idealized state which was present in the womb.
On the auricular map, Point Zero is located where the umbilical cord would rise from the abdomen of the inverted fetus pattern found on the ear.
Point Zero serves as the ’autonomic brain’ that controls visceral organs through peripheral nerve ganglia.
Shen Men (Spirit Gate, Divine Gate)
The purpose of Shen Men is to tranquilize the mind and to allow a harmonious connection to essential spirit.
This master point alleviates stress, pain, tension, anxiety, depression, insomnia, restlessness, and excessive sensitivity.
Utilized in almost all treatment plans, including auricular acupuncture analgesia for surgery.
Shen Men was one of the first points emphasized for the detoxification from drugs and the treatment of alcoholism and substance abuse.
It is also used to reduce coughs, fever, inflammatory diseases, epilepsy and high blood pressure.
Sympathetic Autonomic point
This master point balances sympathetic nervous system activation with parasympathetic sedation. This point is the primary ear point for diagnosing visceral pain and for inducing sedation effects during acupuncture.
It improves blood circulation by facilitating vasodilation, corrects irregular or rapid heart beats, reduces angina pain, alleviates Raynaud’s disease, reduces visceral pain from internal organs, calms smooth muscle spasms.
It is also used for the treatment of kidney stones, gall stones, gastric ulcers, abdominal distension, asthma and dysfunctions of the autonomic nervous system.
This master point leads to a general reduction in inflammatory reactions related to allergies, rheumatoid arthritis and asthma.
It is used for the elimination of toxic substances, the excretion of metabolic wastes and treatment of anaphylactic shock.
In Oriental medicine, the top surface of the Allergy point is pricked with a needle to reduce excess qi or it is pinched to diminish allergic reactions.
Thalamus point (Subcortex, Brain, Pain Control point)
This master point represents the whole diencephalon, including the thalamus and the hypothalamus. It affects thalamic relay connections to the cerebral cortex and hypothalamic regulation of autonomic nerves and endocrine glands.
The thalamus is like a preamplifier for signals sent to the cerebral cortex, refining the neural message and eliminating meaningless background noise.
The thalamus is the highest level of the supraspinal gate control system, and so is used for most pain disorders, acute and chronic, and is frequently used for auricular acupuncture analgesia.
It also reduces neurasthenia, anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, over-excitement, sweating, swelling, shock, hypertension, coronary disorders, cardiac arrhythmias, Reynaud’s disease, gastritis, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, liver disorders and gall bladder dysfunctions.
In TCM, the Thalamus Subcortex point strengthens the brain and calms the mind.
Endocrine point (Internal Secretion, Pituitary Gland)
This master point brings endocrine hormones to their appropriate homeostatic levels, either raising or lowering glandular secretions.
It functions by activating the pituitary gland below the brain.
The pituitary is the master gland controlling all other endocrine glands.
It relieves hypersensitivity, rheumatism, hyperthyroidism, diabetes mellitus, irregular menstruation, sexual dysfunction and urogenital disorders.
It has anti-allergic, anti-rheumatic, and anti-inflammatory effects.
In TCM treatments, it reduces dampness and relieves swelling and edema
Master Oscillation point (Laterality point, Switching point)
This master point balances laterality disorders related to the left and right cerebral hemispheres.
This point is used to alleviate dyslexia, learning disabilities and attention deficit disorder.
People who have unusual or hypersensitive reactions to prescription medications or autoimmune problems often need to be treated for oscillation.
Tranquilizer point (Valium Analog point, Hypertensive point)
This master point produces a general sedation effect, facilitating overall relaxation and relieving generalized anxiety. It also reduces high blood pressure and chronic stress.
Master Sensorial point (Eye point)
This master point controls the sensory cerebral cortex areas of the parietal lobe, the temporal lobe, and the occipital lobe.
It is used to reduce any unpleasant or excessive sensation, such as tactile paresthesia, ringing in the ears and blurred vision.
Master Cerebral point (Master Omega, Nervousness, Neurasthenia, Worry)
This master point represents the pre-frontal lobe of the brain, the part of the cerebral cortex which makes decisions and initiates conscious action.
Stimulation of this auricular point diminishes nervous anxiety, fear, worry, lassitude, dream-disturbed sleep, poor memory, obsessive-compulsive disorders, psychosomatic disorders, and the negative pessimistic thinking which often accompanies chronic pain problems.
Wow! That’s great that we can do so much for our bodies by knowing to massage certain points in the ear. I love finding simple, easy to use self-help tools like this!
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Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.