We are in the season of autumn which is the TCM phase of Metal. The Metal Meridians are Lung and Large Intestine and represent our ability to be “open” – taking in and “letting go” – releasing.
Large Intestine 20 (LI20) is located in the nasolabial sulcus, level with the midpoint of the lateral border of the ala nasi – aka – next to the nostrils. It is the last point on the traditional Large Intestine meridian. You might wonder why a Large Intestine point would be on the face. We can easily connect the concept of “letting go” when we think of our bowel function. This is a physiological process of releasing what no longer is needed to nourish our body. When we experience cold symptoms such as sinusitis, this also is a form of releasing accumulation, a clearing out of what does not serve the body.
LI20 is used to open the nose and to improve breathing. It is a good point to use when suffering from Rhinitis, Sinusitis, Acne, Abscesses of the Mouth, and Toothache to name a few.
The next time you are experiencing a cold with a runny nose or just having trouble breathing through your nose, use your pinkies and gently press into the groove on either side of your nostrils and hold. You may also find that moving your pinkies in gentle circles while holding the point to be comforting. Perform the self acupressure regularly until symptoms dissipate. If a stronger treatment is desired, place your thumbs on LI20 and your finger tips on your brow and let the weight of your head to press into your thumbs.
Illness is considered a wake up call to something being out of balance. This could be physically, mentally, or emotionally. Utilize the down time to contemplate and reflect on how to be more in Harmony.