The common cold is the most commonly encountered disease, an inflammation of the upper respiratory tract caused by a virus or bacterial infection. A cold can occur in any season, but especially in winter and spring or when people become weak and overworked. Colds can strike people of all ages and both sexes.
Traditional Chinese medicine holds that the common cold is caused by changes in the climate or a physical weakness, asthenia of pulmonary qi and invasions of pathogenic factors.
Symptoms of the Common Cold
The usual manifestations are a sudden onset with a dry and scratchy throat, stuffy nose, runny nose and sneezing -- followed by sore throat, hoarseness, cough, headache, chills, low-grade fever and aching.
Application of Self-Massage Along Meridians and Acupoints
1. Pressing and Kneading the Fengchi Point (GB 20)
① Effect: This method can help expel wind, refresh the brain and restore sleep. It can be applied to treat the common cold caused by exogenous wind-cold and exogenous
② Performance: Sitting position. The tips of the thumbs of both hands are put on Fengchi on both sides of the occipital tuberosity. The rest of the fingers hold the occipital bone. Then both thumbs press and knead at the same time till local aching and distending sensation is felt. Then circular pressing and kneading is done from the inner to the outer side for about one minute (see Fig. 2).
2. Stroking the Yingxiang Point (L120)
① Performance: Sitting or supine position. The thumbs of both hands are slightly bent while the rest of the fingers are folded into empty fists. The knuckles of the bent thumbs are placed against the Yingxiang located on the nasolabial groove (between the nose and the mouth) and stroke upward to the base of the nose and downward to the sides of the nostrils for two minutes (see Fig. 1).
② Effect: Self-massage along meridians and acupoints can improve blood circulation in the nasal region, increase tolerance to cold, strengthen the body's resistance, and treat and prevent common cold.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the lung governs qi,controls respiration and the superficies and opens into the nose. The functions of the lung are closely related to the conditions of the lung. In the chapter of "Vessel Measurement" in Ling Shu (Miraculous Pivot), it is said: "The nose is sited in the middle of the face and is connected with blood circulation all over the body. The nostrils are related to the lung. Qi from the nose flows into the brain above and the lung below. So when the pulmonary qi is pure and when both qi and blood are circulating smoothly, no disease will be present. But when the pulmonary qi becomes predominant, it may lead to various diseases if it becomes stagnate."
3. Pushing and Pressing the Scalp
① Performance: Sitting position. The fingers of both hands are slightly bent and forked. The finger pads are put on the hairline on either side of the head to push and press toward the crown until local aching and a distending sensation is felt. Then the fingers continue to push forward about two fingers-width at a time until the vertex or top of the head is reached. This manipulation is done repeatedly for about two minutes (see Fig. 3).
② Effect: It can stimulate the scalp and promote blood circulation in the head, helping to regulate the functions of the cerebral cortex.