Have you ever had a painful feeling on your knee accompanied by swelling and difficulty moving your knee joint? If your answer is yes, then you know how inconvenient knee inflammation can be. Fortunately, it’s a health condition that can be treated at home. In this article, I’ll teach you how to use acupressure for knee inflammation, also known as knee bursitis, and the exact points that you should stimulate.
Does Acupuncture Help Knee Inflammation?
The practice of acupuncture for knee inflammation and pain has been endorsed by several scientific clinical studies. One of the most thorough studies, a systematic review published by Arch Intern Med. has been conducted on nearly 18,000 patients, showing that acupuncture is an effective treatment for different types of chronic pain, including chronic knee pain.
Before diving into the protocol, first, you need to make sure about your health condition. The symptoms of knee inflammation are:
If you have a fever in addition to these symptoms, please consult with your health care provider. Otherwise, you probably have an acute case of knee inflammation due to strenuous exercise, an improper posture kept for extended lengths of time that hurts your knee joint, or even excessive amounts of time standing up.
How To Avoid Knee Inflammation
Prevention is always better than remedy. In the classical text of Chinese medicine, the Swen, there’s mention of the “five harmful exhaustions”, which are five ways in which our bodies can be harmed while engaging in daily activities, which goes as follows:
The five harmful exhaustions: (overuse of) long-term sight damages Blood, always lying down damages the Qi, always sitting damages the muscles, always standing hurts the bones, always moving hurts the bones tendons and ligaments; this is what we know as the Five Exhaustions that cause harm.
Acupressure Points For Knee Inflammation
If your knee hurts when going downstairs
Acupoint: SP-10 (Other Names: Spleen-10/Xue Hai/Sea of Blood)
Acupoint: ST-34 (Other Names: Stomach-34/Liang Qiu/Ridge Mound)
ST-34 Liangqiu is found by placing your three middle fingers on top of your kneecap, slightly on the exterior side, on the depression where the two muscles meet.
Liangqiu helps the knee by clearing the heart and promoting pain relief. To stimulate this acupoint, sit on a chair, then apply firm pressure for 3 seconds, relax for 3 seconds, and repeat for about 3 minutes.
This point is also featured at acupressure points for lower abdominal pain and at acupressure points for gallbladder inflammation.
If your knee hurts when standing up
Acupoint: ST-36 (Other Names: Stomach-36/Zu San Li/Leg Three Miles)
To find ST-36 Zusanli, place all the fingers of your hand, except the thumb immediately below your kneecap, ST-36 is in the middle of the exterior half of your legs.
ST-36 is a very famous acupoint for stomach problems. Due to its location, it also serves to benefit the knees and promotes the circulation of Qi and blood in the Stomach meridian, which crosses the knees and governs Qi function in the knee. To stimulate ST-36, sit on a chair and rub both sides at the same time about 30 times.
ST-36 Zusanli has many uses. Please check it out at acupressure points for peripheral neuropathy.
Acupoint: SP-9 (Other Names: Spleen-9/Yin Ling Quan/Yin Mound Spring)
SP-9 Yinlingquan is located with the bent knee on the inner side of the leg, on the depression where the tibia ends.
This is an excellent acupoint to resolve dampness and edema. To stimulate Yinlingquan, sit on a chair, then apply firm pressure for 3 seconds, relax for 3 seconds, and repeat for about 3 minutes.
You can also find this point on the list of acupressure for shaky hands.
If your knee hurts when not moving
Acupoint: SP-6 (Other Names: Spleen-6/San Yin Jiao/Three Yin Intersection)
Find SP-6 Sanyinjiao by placing your hand fingers except for thumbs on the inner side of the legs, right above the malleolus.
SP-6 improves the balance between the left and right foot necks, reduces the strain on the joint range of the knees, and has analgesic effects. To stimulate this point, rub both sides at the same time about 30 times.
See these two other uses for SP-6 at acupressure points for foot pain.
How To Go On With Your Acupressure
These are some of the most effective points that you can apply your acupressure for knee inflammation. If you want to get the most benefit from it, it is recommended that you make it your daily practice for as long as it is needed for the symptoms to subside. What will determine the efficacy of this knee inflammation acupuncture modality is how consistent you can be in it. You can even do it many times per day if you wish.
Suppose you are a person with a predominant background in Western Medicine and after reading this article, you still have some doubts about what acupressure intervention is and how it can be fitted into your daily living. In that case, I suggest you read this article by Dr. Sabrina Felson on webmd.com on the benefits of acupressure and how you can combine it with conventional treatments.