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Acupressure for sinus congestion with a cough

By Adam Haysom-McDowell
from Annandale Natural Health & Chinese Medicine

One of the more common issues that clients come to see me for is sinus congestion and a cough. If you can’t get to your acupuncturist quickly, there are some great acupuncture points you can try yourself at home! But I hear you say “I’m not an acupuncturist”. Fear not, using acupressure can be helpful and I’d like to share some points with you now. Remember though, while a self-care treatment is a good start, it does not replace a full consultation and treatment plan from your qualified practitioner.

Traditional Chinese Medicine views the body as a network of channels (sometimes called meridians) which connect one area to another. While it takes many years to learn the intricacies and functions of the channels and the points along them, you can try using these points yourself.

To apply acupressure, once you find the point, apply firm pressure (but tolerable) for several minutes. Acupressure can be done several times per day and without the need for special tools, such as acupuncture needles, and can be done almost anywhere. Let’s look at some points to try now.

Point Name: LI4

This point is on the Large Intestine channel which travels from the index finger to the nose, hence often used in any sinus issues. It’s also great for frontal headaches which I find clients often have an accompanying sinus and cough. LI4 is located at the highest point when the thumb and index finger are squeezed together. Once you find the point, relax your fingers and press the point firmly. It’s often a tender point and may be more tender when sinus issues are present.

Point Name: LU5

This point is on the Lung channel hence often used for a cough. To locate the point, bend the elbow slightly so you can feel the stringy tendon of the biceps, in the middle of the elbow crease. The point is just to the outside (thumb side) of the tendon. Press the point firmly for several minutes.

Point Name: ST40

While this point is on the Stomach channel, it is often used where there is copious phlegm or mucus. The point is located along the shin, half way between the knee crease and the tip of the outside ankle bone. From here, measure about two thumb distances out from the shin bone until you find the tender spot. Massaging along the shin muscle is also helpful for stimulating the Stomach channel.


Hopefully you find these points helpful, but remember if your symptoms persist, get in touch with your qualified healthcare practitioner.

More about the author

Adam Haysom-McDowell
Adam Haysom-McDowell
– Annandale Natural Health & Chinese Medicine

Adam is a nationally registered Acupuncturist and Chinese Medicine Herbalist, qualified with a Bachelor of Health Science (TCM), Diploma of Remedial Massage and a Diploma of Fitness (Personal Training). Adam is also a qualified Infant Massage Therapist and Instructor. With over 10 years experience working in both multi-modality (physiotherapy, chiropractic) and private clinics, Adam brings an integrative approach to his Chinese Medicine practice.

Clients of all ages in Sydney's Inner West come to Adam for any number of reasons. Whether it's back pain, a sporting injury, allergies, trouble sleeping, stress, anxiety or even a desire to cease smoking, Adam will utilise any combination of acupuncture, herbal medicine, Chinese remedial therapies (e.g. cupping, gua sha) and remedial massage in your treatment regime.

Listening to you and working with you, Adam will take into consideration recent clinical research along with his vast clinical experience in order to develop an individual treatment plan to suit your needs. If you are unsure how Chinese Medicine could help you, don't hesitate to get in contact today.