Emotions + Pain

We’ve all been emotional before. And it’s perfectly ok. Emotions are part of our everyday lives. When we express them we usually feel better after. Yet how many times have you “choked down the tears”, “swallowed anger”, or had a “gut-feeling” about something and didn’t listen?

Our emotions are a response to what is going on inside of us. 

When expressed at the time they are felt, it saves us pain later on.

However, this doesn’t always happen. When we don’t express our feelings, whether it be HAPPY, SAD, ANGER, WORRY, or FEAR our body stores them for later use. Our emotions can stay in our bodies for a long time and make bigger problems for us later on. This can cause muscular tension, joint pain, or digestive issues. Basically, if we hold onto emotions for a long enough time, our bodies will react with tension and pain. They need our help.

Emotions + Chinese Medicine

In Chinese Medicine, emotions relate to the health of our organs. In other words, when an emotion or feeling is too much or not enough over a period of time it can generate imbalance and illness. If a health concern or disease is already present, it can create emotional distress over time. 

Emotional pain is related to physical health.
Illness can also create emotional pain and distress.

There are five organs that are considered to be affected by emotions, and certain emotions can affect an organ more than others. 

The emotion that is most likely to link to each organ is as follows: 

        Emotion                                   Organ               How it might Manifest

HAPPY

excited, aroused, unbalanced, empty

Heart

  • Anxiety or restless
  • Inability to connect with others and feelings
  • Disconnected
  • More disorganized than normal
  • Absent, empty, or feeling unreal
  • Insomnia or having a hard time sleeping

GRIEF

sadness, mourning, regret

Lung

  • Wish things could be different
  • Feeling things are incomplete
  • Crying
  • Not having interest in things anymore
  • Not feeling anything
  • No energy and motivation to do anything
  • Allergies, asthma, frequent colds
  • Dry skin

ANGER

frustrated, temper, hate

Liver

  • Tension
  • Can’t stand people or don’t want to be around others
  • Frustrated, irritable often
  • Hold grudges
  • Dizziness, headaches
  • Chest pain
  • PMS, cramps, or other period pain

WORRY

overthinking, concern, pain

Spleen

  • Thinking or working too much
  • No creativity
  • Can’t focus, think clearly, or remember things
  • Tired often, fatigue
  • Bloating, diarrhea, constipation
  • Nausea, acid reflux
  • Eating disorders

FEAR

scared, helpless, anxiety, panic

Kidney

  • Unable to make decisions or try something new
  • Nightmares
  • Always looking around the corner or can’t relax
  • Low back pain
  • Hearing or hair loss
  • Infertility
  • Urinary or sexual concerns
  • Genetic or inherited disease

Why This Is Important

Mind and body have a connection. Emotions and what we think connect with our body and structure. When we try to get rid of emotions that have bothered us it can affect our thinking, muscles, joints, tendons, and bones, especially if we have been experiencing these feelings over a long period of time. It can come across as physical symptoms such as tension, fatigue or pain. Our brain can create issues in our body, even if we are only thinking about it.

How Acupuncture + Chinese Medicine Helps

Modern life gives us much stress to deal with. Our feelings and emotional response helps us to adapt to our daily stressors. Whether you’re dealing with long or short term feelings that cause stress, Acupuncture can help by allowing you to regain fluidity with your emotions and/or illness and allow you to live more harmoniously with yourself and others. When your body is more balanced, it can allow you to see if your emotional reactions are in proportion with the situation, or see habitual responses that you may have to many different life events. 

Resources

Connection between Acupuncture + Emotions

http://gpcacupuncture.com/emotions/ 

Chinese Medicine + Health Symptoms

https://www.verywellmind.com/emotions-in-traditional-chinese-medicine-88196 

Related Info:

Mindfulness: http://acupuncturestudentclinic.com/reduce-stress-with-the-vagus-nerve/

Yin Yoga: http://acupuncturestudentclinic.com/1326-2/