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Acupuncture for Sleep

Multiple studies have demonstrated acupuncture to be an effective treatment for insomnia. Acupuncture lessens anxiety, stimulates melatonin production, induces sleep onset, and reduce sleep disruption and arousal during the night. All of these effects amount to an overall increase in total sleep time. In some instances, acupuncture is used as a treatment not for insomnia itself, but for pain from other physical conditions that in turn make it difficult to fall asleep at night.
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Sleep issue treated by acupuncture
Difficulty falling asleep (sleep onset insomnia)
Interrupted sleep, waking during the night
Waking up too early
Vivid nightmares
Extreme insomnia
What it does
  • Reduces feelings that hinder sleep, such as stress, anxiety, fear, and grief. Also helps treat cough and respiratory issues.
  • Relieves nausea, vomiting, indigestion, anxiety, palpitations, chest/cardiac congestion and pain, depression, asthma, cough, vertigo, and irritable mood.
  • Reduces anxiety, cold sweats, and excited emotions that cause insomnia. Also helps with cardiac and chest pain or palpitations, epilepsy, and irritable mood.
  • Relaxes and clears the mind, reducing exhaustion and stress-related insomnia. Also helps with headaches, shoulder and back pain, neck pain, vertigo, sore throat, nasal congestion, and skin issues
  • Reduces stress, fear, and manic and suicidal thoughts. Also helps with earaches, headaches, sore throat, bloody noses, eye issues, asthma, spinal cord problems, and chest congestion.
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Acupoint Location
B38: “Vital Diaphragm” Between the shoulder and the spine at heart level
P6: Pericardium 6 / Ă˘â‚¬Ĺ“Inner Gate” On the center of the forearm below the wrist
H7: Heart 7 / Ă˘â‚¬Ĺ“Spirit Gate” On the inner side of the wrist crease along the line of the pinky
B10: Urinary Bladder 10 / Ă˘â‚¬Ĺ“Celestial Pillar” On the back of the neck below the base of the skull
GV16: Governing Vessel 16 / Ă˘â‚¬Ĺ“Wind Mansion” In the center of the back of the head, in the hollow below the base of the skull
There are also specific meridians (qi pathways) tied to sleep, which include:
Meridian Emotion addressed Related sleep issue
Heart meridian Anxiety Sleep onset and sleep-maintenance insomnia
Spleen meridian Worry Waking up at a similar time every night
Liver meridian Anger and stress Waking up in the first half of the night
Lung meridian Grief Waking up in the second half of the night
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