Stress and Liver qi stagnation


Stress is a very common part of life and often affects 2 major organs in Traditional Chinese Medicine: the liver and spleen.  Often times patients present with issues like anger, moodiness, and depression.  They may also have hypochondriac pain  and sigh for relief.  We call this liver qi stagnation or the liver qi which travels in the bloodstream is not flowing smoothly.


For women with liver qi stagnation, PMS issues, pain, and cramping can be worse.  The Liver plays an important part in regulating digestion, too.  If the patients have weak digestion in other words a weak spleen,  the liver can overact on the spleen causing bloating and pain after a stressful situation with consummation of a meal.  Both acupuncture and herbs are both effective in treating stress. Acupuncture can help with stress by releasing endorphins in the blood that reduce pain and increase happiness.

Acupuncture also allows for increased blood circulation throughout the body, which does the following:

1.         Removes cortisol (the stress-inducing chemical naturally produced by your body)

2.         Oxygenates tissue

3.         Relaxes the muscles

4.         Lowers blood pressure

5.         Decreases heart rate


For acupuncture treatment for stress, we can use Lv 3, LI 4, Pc6, GB 34, Ear points at ear shenmen, and ear liver as a basic treatment protocol and add additional acupuncture points as needed.


A herbal formula to help calm the liver and soothe the liver qi is Xiao Yao San or Rambling formula.  A similar formula from the Golden Flower Herb company is the  Free and Easy formula. We also stress that in addition to acupuncture and herbs; that healthy diet and exercise can also be included help cope with the stresses of life.


If stress is overwhelming you at work or home, please contact us at Acupuncture and Nutrition Clinic to get fast results and relief.


For more information on the Xiao Yao San formula. please go to our Herbology tab on our website as it can only be prescribed by a Licensed Acupuncturist.