Dysmenorrhea (menstrual pain/cramps) is a commonly treated medical condition within Chinese Medicine. In many cases proper treatment with both acupuncture and/or Chinese Herbal Medicine one can effectively balance the menstrual system as a whole and completely alleviate dysmenorrhea symptoms.
Throughout the process there are number of self-help techniques that one can use to help during cramping and one of these is acupressure. Publishing in the “Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal”, researchers recently explored the effect of acupressure at the acupuncture point LV 3 on primary dysmenorrhea. Within this study they divided female medical students living in on campus dorms into a treatment group and a control group (27 and 32 respectively). They primarily looked at pain intensity reductions over a course of menstrual cycles March until June 2012. The acupressure point was stimulated for 16 minutes (2 minutes on and 2 minutes off at a time) during menstrual cramping.
They found that at the time acupressure had a good pain reduction effect but over the course of the cycles it didn’t limit the intensity each month.
This is an important study in the sense that it hints at the further work that is required to properly treat a complicated menstrual condition like this. While acupressure can be very useful for very basic things, proper treatment from fully trained Chinese Medicine practitioners is important in most cases to get a more complete resolution to the issues at hand. That said, knowing some of the common acupressure points, is very useful. And certainly using acupressure at LV 3 is something many people can do quite easily even sitting at a desk at work, so if it can be used to cut pain and possibly reduce the need of pain medication that is a nice technique to utilize.