Anxiety can be an inconvenient tightening of the stomach before a job interview. It’s normal to feel like that and it usually passes without any consequences.
Repeated feelings of alarm, sadness, or helplessness aren’t as tolerable. The associated physical pains that go along with them are also difficult to deal with, and the whole situation affects the quality of one’s life severely.
Using acupressure for anxiety helps to alleviate these conditions. First, directly by restoring a feeling of well being, and further by alleviating pain, which is one of the main contributors to anxiety and stress.
However, it is not easy to find the exact point sometimes. Also, you may want to keep your hands free while you are working, exercising or cooking. Don't worry. There are many products on the market that helps you to reap the benefits of acupressure for the whole day without any hassle. They generate pressure just like your fingertips, says Dr. Feurstein. “I recommend using seeds to keep calm during stressful days. They are even better if used in conjunction with meditation techniques.” he says.
Read on to see how they work, and what’s the best way to benefit from acupressure.
Here’s a roundup of the top acupressure for anxiety kits and products. First, we look at the product as a whole, then examine it’s strong and weak points, and finally suggest optimal ways for using it.
The products vary in many aspects, starting from the acupoints they focus on, to the amount of time they offer relief from stress.
Some products are short term while others maintain the soothing effects for longer. There are also various ways of implementation to suit individual needs.
Dragon Acupuncture Multi-Condition Ear Seed Acupressure Kit
This comprehensive kit is a professional and thorough acupressure device. It addresses certain health issues and targets specific acupoints to alleviate these concerns.
The Dragon Acupuncture ear seeds kit lists an array of health conditions and provides a step-by-step procedure to remedy them following the proper ways of ancient Chinese medicine.
The kit includes 600 Vaccaria seeds that come in tiny square-shaped patches. They adhere easily to the ‘heavenly gate’ or ‘Shen Men point’ to treat around 19 different illnesses and unproductive habits.
The patches offer a sustained pressure on the ‘Shen Men point’ to prolong the positive effect of the treatment.
They’re much less irritating to the skin than the similar metal or bead products, and the patches are tan-colored so they’re barely visible.
They’re waterproof, so showering wouldn’t wash them off, and generally, they stay in place for a few days, until you remove them with the tweezers and reapply after a short reprieve.
The Dragon Acupuncture kit comes with extensive information and charts to make it easier to use, and more effective in doing its job.
Things We Like
- Integrated kit containing more than the essentials
- Good quality product
- Addresses specific health issues
- Helps with various illnesses and health concerns
- An effective approach to anxiety and depression
- The patch is tan-colored so it’s not very visible
- Clear detailed instructions
- E-book and ear map offer valuable information
- Responsive customer support
Things We Don’t
- Locating the specific acupoint might take a bit of familiarization.
- Some people might find the e-book hard to read
Prosource Fit Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set
The idea of this pillow and mat set comes straight from the oriental ‘bed of needles’. It might sound painful, but the opposite usually happens as you use that prickly mat set.
Acupressure is applied broadly to about 8000 points in the body, which is assumed to stimulate the production of endorphins, enhance blood circulation, and encourage the muscles to recover after a workout.
Here’s a good feature: it helps in promoting better sleep and even overcoming insomnia. This is useful to many of us who come home exhausted after work but still find falling asleep too hard to do.
The mat is moderate-sized, with about 25 inches total length and approximately 16 inches width. The pillow is around 14 inches wide and 4 inches thick.
Both items are designed to give comfort and healing to the neck and back, which are often problematic areas.
The effects of this combo are limited though as the set isn’t portable and the pressure isn’t sustained.
Things We Like
- It comes as an integrated combo for the neck and back
- It covers a large area of the body, so it’s effective
- It’s a general solution for pain and stress relief
- Easy to use and implement
- It comes in a nice assortment of colors
Things We Don’t
- It doesn’t focus on specific acupoints
- Acupressure isn’t sustained
- Cleaning and maintenance of the mat are a bit complicated
- It can’t be machine washed
This is a good solution for people struggling with motion sickness, which can be severely limiting sometimes, pregnancy morning sickness, occasional nausea, or being indisposed after surgeries or chemotherapy treatment.
It works on the sixth acupoint referred to as the ‘Nei Kuan’, and the applied pressure usually succeeds in alleviating the uncomfortable nausea sensation.
It’s small, lightweight, washable, and there’s a child-size band, so it’s one of the practical products that use sustained acupressure to relieve a stress-related issue, but it doesn’t cover any other concerns.
Things We Like
- It’s clinically tested
- It’s effective in managing nausea
- It’s lightweight and portable
- The acupressure is sustainable
Things We Don’t
- It addresses one concern only not stress in general
- Taking them off abruptly might initiate a bout of nausea
Dream Products Massaging Comfort Slides
This broad range of acupressure and massage is intended to relieve the strain in the foot at the end of a long day, and eventually to release the restricted energy throughout the body.
It’s easy to wear, it looks sufficiently unisex, so it can be used by men and women, and it can be used indoors or outdoors, but of course within reason. Flip flops could be frowned upon in some settings.
It’s a generic approach though, as it doesn’t focus on specific acupoints, or attempt to address certain health issues.
Things We Like
- Easy to wear and move with
- Doesn’t need much knowledge of acupressure points
- It gives relief from foot strain within a few minutes
- It’s well ventilated and waterproof
Things We Don’t
- It’s a generic acupressure device
- It doesn’t address stress and anxiety issues effectively
- It offers a limited choice of colors and sizes
Aculief Wearable Acupressure
This is supposed to reflect on the general well being of the body.
It’s a small device that should be placed in a specific pressure point in the hand, it doesn’t restrain your movement or cause any inconvenience.
You can go out with it and resume your work and life without much disturbance. The constant pressure provides an ongoing dissipation of headaches and improves pain tolerance.
This acupressure device would’ve been great if it also addressed anxiety, depression, or other mood-related issues.
Things We Like
- It’s small-sized
- It’s acknowledged in the medical circles
- It’s easy to wear and take-off
- It can effectively reduce headaches
- It can help with muscle tension caused by headaches
Things We Don’t
- It doesn’t address depression and anxiety directly
- The acupoint could be difficult to locate for some people
What Is Acupressure?
Acupressure is a scientific treatment based on ancient Chinese methods. It divides the body into invisible energy paths or ‘meridians’. General wellness depends on keeping these paths unobstructed and the energy freely flowing.
Being sick, anxious, or tired is associated with blocked energy passages. Applying pressure on specific points in these paths is believed to unclog their stagnation, and restore the body to its healthy state.
Acupressure is similar to acupuncture in many ways, you might’ve heard about the latter more, and it’s reassuring to know that they both carry the same benefits, but acupressure is now gaining more popularity as it doesn’t involve any needlework.
How Can Acupressure Help with Anxiety?
Acupressure is concerned with the wellness of the spirit or mind as much as it focuses on the wellness of the body.
This integrated holistic approach understood thousands of years ago what we realized only recently: a tired soul makes the body sick.
Six basic acupoints contribute to lowering stress and anxiety. Many cases struggling with panic attacks or elevated heart rate associated with random incidents significantly improved simply by applying and maintaining pressure on these points.
Stress is also caused by experiencing pain for too long. Chronic diseases can easily lead to sadness and eventually depression. That’s why alleviating some of the burdens of these illnesses helps in decreasing the stress that goes with it.
Anxiety also comes from a feeling of helplessness. Panic attacks come like an uninvited guest and stay as long as they please.
When people realize that they can control it by using acupressure, they feel empowered and that alone decreases the frequency of panic attacks.
Anxiety and depression are serious health conditions that usually require heavy drugs. Using acupressure in addressing them sometimes translates to needing less medication, which also means fewer side effects, and a better quality of life.
Is It Safe?
Acupressure is an ancient philosophy of wellness that’s generally safe for use, and that’s one of the main reasons why many people are opting for it instead of acupuncture, which involves more intrusive techniques.
It doesn’t involve ingesting chemicals or doing anything extreme. The simple act of massaging or applying mild pressure doesn’t seem risky, and many people can’t see why they shouldn’t try it.
Applying gentle massage to certain spots in the body to promote wellness is a gesture most of us do even without noticing.
We massage our temples, rub our kids' ears or arms, and we do the same to our pets, and usually it does the trick, our headaches subside and our little ones relax and might even go into a deep sleep.
It’s better to know where to apply pressure and how to use acupressure to get better results. Basic knowledge of the technique should be helpful, effective, and safe.
Like any other treatment, it’s best to start with simple steps and stop if you feel any discomfort, even if it’s not directly related.
Pregnant women should be cautious with acupressure, as some massage routine could be conductive of early labor.
People using medications should also check with their doctors whether their progress warrants going off their medicine, or if a more coordinated treatment plan is a more appropriate protocol.
Clinical studies examined the short term effect of acupressure on anxiety and depression. Both respond well within that time frame, and the results are promising for long term results. However, more research needs to be done before they become conclusive.
That’s why treating and monitoring depression should be regular. Acupressure will hopefully get sufficient clinical support to expand its application with anxiety-related illnesses, the results up till now certainly encourage that.
Who Should Use Acupressure?
Anyone seeking general wellness can try acupressure. It’s a safe procedure that clears the energy paths in our bodies and resets our vitality and harmony.
People who suffer from chronic and painful illnesses are also welcome to try acupressure. There’s sufficient clinical research at this point to support its ability to improve chronic lower back pain, help with pain management, and alleviate insomnia.
There are also several studies showing that it can help with weight loss and quitting smoking. The problem with both is usually breaking ingrained habits, and usual approaches don’t always work. Acupressure has proven effective in both cases.
The Dragon Acupuncture kit is by far the best acupressure product we came across. It’s the one that understands and follows the teachings of Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).
The kit is extensive, it has all the necessary seeds, tools, and information. A regular person can use it with just a basic knowledge of acupressure. The rest is covered in the online videos, ear chart, and e-book.
It’s a sturdy product that wouldn’t fall off or get washed out after a shower, it’s also well-hidden, so wearing it outside isn’t an issue at all.
It doesn’t cause allergies, the way metal or bead seeds do occasionally, and they come in plentiful supply, so the kit will last for quite a while.
It’s also the only one that addresses stress and anxiety head-on, most devices get there by relaxing strained muscles.
It also alleviates much of the burden of depression, but it’s recommended to keep monitoring progress with a doctor.
The Sea-Band Wristband and the Aculief Wearable Acupressure are also good devices that promote general well being and reduce anxiety-causing illnesses, but they come at a far second place from the Dragon Acupuncture kit.