Self-treatment using acupressure
Before starting this page, please read the “Start Here” page, subtitled: The Locations of the Three Points.
This page discusses treatment at all three locations.
The patient or a friend of the patient can perform this treatment. The treatment might be easier to do if done by a friend, actually, because some people cannot reach the part of the mid-back that should be stimulated by hand.
However, if a COVID patient has no friend nearby who can perform this treatment and if they cannot reach the location on their back by themselves, they can apply this treatment by mentally performing the actions needed on the mid-back. But in general, the treatment might be easier to do if a friend can to do the acupressure.
Link to YouTube video showing twelve people with Long Covid being treated using the acupressure treatment.
This unedited video was made during a class in Cape Town, for the local cranio-sacral therapist’s organization. The class was intentionally not directed at acupuncturists because the lecturer was making the point that acupuncture is not necessary for this three-point COVID treatment.
The self-treatment explanation starts below, with a short version of the treatment. If a person is not familiar with terms such as “acupressure,” the location of body parts such as “seventh thoracic vertebra,” and isn’t confident in being able to tell when a person has been treated “long enough,” then please continue on to the long version, which gives highly detailed instructions for people with no medical background. The long version follows immediately after the short version.
Treatment Technique: Short Version
Step 1: The mid-brain blockage
This area is treated using a two-part process: parts A and B. Part A is acupressure on the forehead and back of the head. Part B is a visualization exercise that should be done at the same time as the acupressure.
Part A: Place a finger at Yin Tang and a finger at Du-15 (see drawing, right), and stimulate by mild pressure with rotation of the fingers (acupressure).
Part B: Visualize energy moving through the middle of the head, going from back to front (note arrows), breaking up the feeling of resistance in the center of the head, at the location indicated by the circle in the drawing. Continue to stimulate the two points and imagine the current running correctly until the mid-brain resistance is gone and you feel a return to alertness and a vibrant sense of being alive.
The mid-brain blockage
The circle inside the head shows the blocked area.
Step 2. The mid-back blockage
Gently stroke, or have a friend gently stroke, the current that runs up the back, starting at around Du-7 or Du-8, and go up to around Du-12 or even Du-14. Do this until you can easily imagine energy flowing up your back past the area of Du-9.
Du channel blockage at Du-9
Step 3. The elbow blockage
Stroke the arm from Large Intestine-8 or LI-10, going past LI-11, up to at least LI-13. If, after several minutes of this, you do not feel a change in the energy flowing over your neck, face, sinuses, or a shift in your sense of smell and taste, do acupressure at LI-15 for about one minute. Then repeat the stroking of the Large Intestine channel, but go from LI-8 or LI-10 all the way up to the shoulder, at LI-15.
Large Intestine channel blockage at LI-11
Treatment Technique: Long Version
Step 1. Mid-brain blockage
In people with COVID-19 and post-COVID, the current that is supposed to run through the midline of the head, from the brain stem, at the back of the brain, to the center front of the brain, at the frontal lobe, becomes blocked. The blockage is in the middle of the brain, approximately at the brain’s striatum. This is the location that, ideally, should be treated first. But a later section will explain why, sometimes, one will need to treat the mid-back blockage, first.
This midbrain disruption/blockage is the disruption that creates the “fuzzy thinking” and exhaustion, and disrupts other deep-brain functions, such as the ability to regulate temperature and initiate healing. This is the most important of the three points that will be treated. This is the disruption that can make COVID linger and become Long-COVID. There are two parts to treating this point: Part A) the acupressure and Part B) the visualization.
A reminder to acupuncturists: the main path of the Du channel goes through the head, when awake. When sleeping, the Du channel energy is shunted to the route that runs over the top of the head. And when a high degree of electrical resistance is blocking the mid-brain path of the Du channel – as it does in COVID – the current cannot flow easily through the middle of the brain, and might be shunted to the “sleep-time” route that runs over the top of the head.
Part A: Acupressure
Place one finger at Yin Tang, pressing gently into the forehead, at the point between the eyebrows. Place another finger, from the other hand, at Du-15, on the back of the head, pressing gently into the skin.
Keep the fingers somewhat firmly in their place at these two locations, while moving the skin just under the fingers in a small, circular motion. Alternate the direction of the circling. First circle clockwise for a few moments, then counterclockwise, and then clockwise again: over and over.
The fingers do not move from their positions: they stay in one place on the skin, but the skin under the fingers is gently stimulated, as the fingers press on the skin and move the underlying skin in small circles. The patient should be able to feel this movement. Do not press so hard that the patient feels pain. Do not be so gentle that the patient cannot feel the movement. The patient should be able to feel as if the area is being gently, lovingly massaged at two, fixed locations.
Part 2: Visualization
The patient should be shown the picture above. They should briefly study the map of the current that flows through the brain. Once they have a good idea of where this current is supposed to go, they should visualize the Du current flowing through the brain along the line shown in the above drawing. The current is uni-directional: it moves from the back of the head to the front. It is crucial that this current move in the correct direction: from the back of the head to the front. Do not imagine this current going back and forth. Do not imagine this current flowing backwards, from the forehead to the neck. This current must be imagined as moving from the back of the head over to the front of the head, along the midline, moving neither to the left or the right.
The mid-brain blockage
People with COVID or Long-COVID might have trouble visualizing this crucial, consciousness-supporting current. The patient might feel as if a current starts at the back of the head and moves forward towards the front of the brain, but is unable to get past the middle of the brain – the area that is circled in the above drawing.
The patient might feel as if he cannot move the current from the back of the head towards the forehead in the line indicated in the drawing. A patient might feel that, when it approaches the striatum (the circled area), this current is shunted to the left or the right, or even splitting in two, with some current going to the left and some going to the right. Some people feel as if the current is diverted downward into the lower parts of the brain. Others just feel that the current becomes stuck at this point, and they cannot imagine it moving.
The patient must keep mentally hammering away at breaking through this barrier. As soon as he can imagine that this current is running successfully through the head all the way to the forehead, the visualization will become much easier. The feeling of “foggy thinking” might clear within minutes, or it might take up to an hour.
Some patients state that they are certain that they cannot move this energy through the brain. For these people, I give the following inspirational thought: This blockage in your brain is being created by a virus. You are larger, stronger, and more capable of thought than the virus. You can override this electrical manifestation of the virus. You must. Make a huge effort, over and over. Force yourself to imagine this current in your brain moving effortlessly towards the forehead. Force yourself, over and over. As soon as you can imagine this current moving correctly along the midline, neither to the left or right, and not up or down, but straight on towards the center of the forehead, the virus’s hold on you will be nearly ended. Your human will power is stronger than the “passive power” of the virus, a virus whose electrical signals are temporarily overruling your own electrical patterns.
Step 2 –The Mid-Back Blockage
A blockage in the mid back area might cause back pain, flank (sides of torso) pain, and pain when lying down on one’s back. It can also cause breathing difficulties, as this area influences the diaphragm, lungs, heart, and blood- flow issues in general. A blockage in this area can also cause a sense of general weakness.
The mid-back pain centered at DU-9, sometimes spreading over to the neck, shoulders, and/or flank, is a very common and disruptive symptom of post-COVID. MDs often ignore this problem and do not consider it to be part of the COVID collection of symptoms. But it is in fact a common problem following a COVID infection and it resolves quickly in response to treating the mid-back blockage.
Du channel blockage at Du-9
Stroke the skin over the spine from the lower back towards the neck, paying particular attention to the section from Du-8 to Du-10, including Du-9. Do not go back and forth. Stroke the skin uni-directionally, from the lower spine towards the neck. Stroke slowly and steadily for one to five minutes. The goal is to generate a small electric current in the tissues just under the skin.
The stroking is best done directly on the skin: not through clothing. Strong pressure is not helpful – you are not trying to physically move blood or something tangible. With the friction from your finger, you are trying to create a small amount of static electricity in the skin, which will encourage or restart the flow of electric current that runs just under the skin in the sub-dermal fascia.
If, after the pain starts to lessen, any back pain lingers or the chest still feels tight, the friend can continue to stroke this area from the low back to the base of the neck until the pain is gone. If the patient is doing this work on hiw, via visualization, they can continue to do this visualization technique in the mid-back for ten minutes at a time, and then take a short break, and then resume doing this technique. Repeat this sequence until it’s easy to feel that the back is “open” again, the back/ flank/ scapular pain is gone, breathing feels easier and/or the chest is more relaxed.
Most people cannot reach this part of their own back. If they cannot, they can have a friend do this part of the technique for them. If there is no one available to help with this part of the technique and the patient cannot reach this part of their back, they can imagine this current moving past the blockage at Du-9. They should imagine a current moving about an eighth of an inch under the skin, in a path about half an inch wide, traveling from approximately Du-4, past the blockage, and up to the base of the neck at Du-14. They should imagine this until they feel that the blockage is gone. If a person is not sure when the blockage is gone, he can imagine this current moving up the spine, over and over, for approximately ten minutes.
People with COVID or Long-COVID often feel contracted or “oppressed” in the chest area. They sometimes have back pain that might spread all the way to the shoulder blades or the side of the body. The back pain can be so severe that the person cannot lie down on their back. The person might feel a “fluttery” heart. These symptoms usually will quickly cease after the mid-back point is treated.
Within a few minutes of stroking along the spine past Du-9, the patient might feel their lungs opening and their back pain subsiding.
Step 3 – The elbow blockage
Stroke the arm from approximately LI-8 or LI-9, to just up the arm from LI-12. The direction of the stroke is from the hand towards the shoulder. Do not go back and forth. Stroke uni-directionally. Do both sides: left and right. Spend at least a full minute on each arm, or if possible, several minutes. The stroking is best done directly on the skin: not through clothing. Strong pressure is not helpful – you are not trying to physically move blood or something tangible. You are trying to create a small amount of static electricity, which will encourage or restart the flow of electric current that runs just under the skin in the sub-dermal fascia.
Do slow, steady, gentle stroking with a finger or two fingers, or the palm of your hand. Your fingers can generate enough static to encourage this current to start moving past the point where it became blocked due to the virus.
To observe the moderate tempo of the stroking, please watch the YouTube video at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSjfZq65gY8&t=9s.
A note about the sequence of treating the three points
It might be best, but is certainly not crucial, to unblock the mid-brain current before unblocking the mid-back blockage at Du-9. If the mid-brain blockage is cleared first, then when the blockage at Du-9 breaks up and current starts to flow, current can surge all the way up to the neck and through the head to Yin Tang. This sudden return of energy all the way to the forehead can feel great.
However, if a person is still having difficulty getting current to flow through the brain after more than ten minutes or so, the mid-back point should be addressed. Sometimes, when the blockage in the mid-back at Du-9 breaks up, the increase in energy moving up the back and into the neck can help push through the blockage in the mid-brain.
Also, after current starts running through the head and through the mid-back, it cannot hurt, and might be good, to repeat the techniques again. Focus on current going through the brain, and then focus on current moving up the mid-back, and then the brain, and then the mid-back, over and over for several minutes. The patient will continue to feel improvement as he, or a friend, keeps encouraging the correct flow of energy.
Large Intestine channel point locations
Treatment of this point might only require a minute or two on each side. If the patient notices more energy moving through his face, or notices his sinuses are opening up, you will not need to stroke this channel much longer.
But if the Large Intestine channel energy has been going sideways due to the COVID blockage, diverting into another nearby channel, then the patient will probably not feel any change in his face or sinuses from stroking past LI-11. If this is the case, the patient might need to add another acupressure point to their treatment.
Press a finger into the front of the shoulder, at LI-15. Try to dig the finger into the small, fingertip-sized depression at the front corner of the shoulder at LI-15, as shown in the drawing above. Press the finger in gently and move the skin under the finger in circles, to stimulate this area and get energy flowing into it. Repeat on the opposite shoulder.
Next, stroke the Large Intestine channel, using the same, smooth stroking motions as before. But now, instead of stopping the stroke at LI-12 or LI-13, make the stroke longer: the stroke should go all the way from LI-8 all the way up to the shoulder, at LI-15. Do this stroking for at least a minute, or until the patient feels a change in throat, face, sinuses, and/or sense of taste or smell.
If the Large Intestine current has been running astray, this longer stroking will help the Large Intestine current resume flow in its correct pathway. Once it has been restored, it will almost always stay in the correct path.
Duration of treatment: Stroke past LI-11 for at least a minute, or until you start to feel something change in your face, your sinuses, or your sense of smell and taste. If you do not feel these changes within five minutes, start stroking all the way up to the shoulder, and do the stroking for at least a minute, or until you feel the changes described above.
In closing, you can repeat this three-point treatment any time you like. You cannot harm yourself by doing all three steps of this preventative treatment once a day or as often as you like. So long as COVID is rampant in our communities, stimulating these three points mentally, or with your fingers, once a day, is an excellent way to prevent COVID from gaining a foothold in your electrical system.