Do you have sleep problems? If you are not able to have a night of restful sleep, your body might not be able to restore and heal and this will impact the way you will feel the whole day. Because our sleep function can regulate our mood, improve our cognitive function and our energy levels. So if you’re not having those minimum eight hours of sleep every night, reflexology might provide some relief. Yes, you’ve heard well, a mini session of acupressure can promote the peaceful sleep you need and desire.
Are you ready to help improving your sleep disorder by using physical touch and the relaxation effects of reflexology? Great! It will be easier than you think and we’re here to tell you everything you need to know about how to use acupressure for sleep!
What is reflexology and how does it work?
Practiced for more than 5000 years, this ancient holistic therapy method involves stimulating some pressure points in region of your feet that are linked with different aspects of your physical and mental wellbeing. In short, this form of massage can affect your whole body, depending on the areas that correspond to some regions of your feet and can have soothing, calming effects. Just think that you have over 15.000 nerves aka reflex points in your feet alone but you can also massage the hands, face and ears.
Reflexology was used to promote relaxation, reduce pain and stress, improve mood and support people with sleeping problems. Basically, your feet represent a map for reflexologist where other parts of your body are laid out. For example, the chest is representing by the ball of the foot, the digestive organs are mirrored by the arch, the ankles and the heel correspond to the reproductive system, the toe reflexes the head and the inside curve of the food mirrors the curve of your spine.
Reflexology chart with pressure points labeled
This being said, foot reflexology can also have great effects when treating insomnia. So if you take 15 minutes before your bedtime ritual to massage your feet and distribute the energy throughout your entire body, you may be able to relax enough and enjoy a night of restful sleep. Learn to how eliminate that tension in your feet with self-massage techniques that stimulate your nervous system and releases all that congested, blocked energy in your body, restoring its natural balance. We promise that you will feel the impact throughout the whole body.
Here’s how to use acupressure for sleep:
- Spirit gate – a point that is located below your smallest finger, on your outer wrist.
To treat insomnia, you need to apply gentle, up and down movements in this small area, using a circular movement for about 3 minutes. Use a gentle pressure to hold the left side of this point and then move the right side. When you’ll stimulate this area of your wrist your mind will become quieter and you’ll be able to sleep.
Stimulating this pressure point is associated with quieting your mind, which can help you fall asleep.
- Three yin intersection – a point that is located just above your ankle, on your inner leg
To treat insomnia, you need to reach the highest point above your ankle (about 4 finger widths up your leg) and apply deep pressure behind your tibia (the biggest lower leg bone). Continue massaging with up and down circular motions for about 5 seconds and you will relax enough to sleep like a baby. More than this, this technique can also help you relieve menstrual cramps or any other pelvic disorders. If you’re pregnant, this massage technique can induce labor, don’t use it!
- Bubbling spring – a point that is located on the sole just above the middle of your foot.
To treat insomnia: you need to take the foot in your hand while curling your toes and apply firm pressure on the sole of your foot for a few minutes, using up-and-down circular motions. When you stimulate this pressure point that is considered to ground all your energy, you will be able to induce sleep.
- Inner frontier gate – a point that is located between two tendons on your inner forearm.
To ease insomnia: you need to make sure your palms are facing up and apply a downward pressure between the two tendons you have down your wrist crease. Massage the area for about 5 seconds using circular movements and you will improve your sleep patterns while soothing headaches, stomach pain and nausea.
- Wind pool – point that is located behind your ears, on the back of your neck where the neck muscles attach to your skull.
To treat insomnia: you need to create a cup shape with your hands and use your thumbs to firmly massage the pressure towards the skull. Your fingers are interlocked while you perform circular up-and-down movements in this area. This technique will help you calm your mind, reduce stress and some respiratory problems that interrupt sleep.
Meanwhile if you have another particular area of your body that needs massage, you can press one of the corresponding reflex points:
- Top of each toe for more clarity & positive thinking;
- Center of the big toe for hormonal balance;
- Outer side of the big toe for more melatonin;
- The base of big toe to balance metabolism;
- The ridge of your toe to release tension;
- The foot ball for calm your breathing.
This massage technique can help you achieve a deep state of relaxation by settling the body and the mind, encouraging deeper breathing and increasing the oxygen distribution throughout your body. So enjoy your new bedtime ritual while thinking of all the good times you spend during the day. Envision how your next one will be and sweet dreams!
Your bedtime ritual can include a nurturing exchange of reflexology mini-session with your partner. You can even use these same techniques to help your child go to sleep more easily. Sweet dreams!