I started having seasonal allergies about 20 years ago, and they have been getting steadily worse. I have now reached a point where my nose has been running constantly for the past 9 months or so. My ear, nose and throat specialist is stumped, he's tried everything short of surgery. Then a couple months ago I went to the hospital to have a (huge) gall stone removed, and when the nurse inserted my IV, my allergies quit completely within 10 minutes. A week later she removed the needle and they began again almost immediately. The best I can figure, she hit PC 3, and now when I apply pressure or magnets to the spot my allergies improve ( I actually tattooed the spot so I wouldn't lose it!). Since there's no link that I can find between PC 3 and allergies, I'm not sure what else I can do. My nose still runs whenever I eat or drink, or go outside, and I can't walk around with an IV needle in my arm all the time! I'm looking for a local acupunturist, but am unemployed and may not be able to afford the regular treatments I obviously need. Overall, I'm not very healthy, but the allergies are the only condition where western medicine has failed for me.
You should really see an acupuncturist locally. Generally while some points can be helpful at times, acupuncture is not a point to condition modality. You should read "What Does Acupuncture Treat?" for more information on treating patterns instead of symptoms.
Allergies, sinusitis and all associated conditions are commonly treated with acupuncture and with time and the correct focus there is no reason to think that you would not be fine.
If finances are an issue you could look for a community acupuncture clinic which are often done on lower sliding scales. Not sure about kzoo, but I imagine there is one in ann arbor.
The area of PC3 absolutely can be used for allergies. I don't believe this can be explained from a TCM standpoint, but from Dr. Tan's Balance Method it makes perfect sense. Within the balance method, a diagnosis is made based on which meridian(s) is effected. In the case of allergies, it is often the stomach meridian. Once this diagnosis is made, other meridians are selected that "balance" the effected meridian. The stomach meridian is balanced by the stomach, large intestine, pericardium, and spleen meridians. Once a meridian is chosen to be treated, points are then selected based on an "image" of the effected area. So using the arm to image the head would put the chin at the fingers and the top of the head at the top of the shoulder. This would put the nose somewhere near the elbow level. This is why the area of Pc3 works so well. Typically, you can expect to see results with this method within seconds or minutes of needle placement (i.e. less pain, less congestion, less pressure, etc.). Acupressure can be done, but I would focus an area from the elbow/knee and ~3 inches distal. You can use any of the above mentioned meridians for this. Often times more tender points are what is used with acupuncture. In my practice, I will frequently put 3 needles in the area of St36 bilaterally. This will usually produce an instant decrease in pain and congestion.
I agree with Chad in that seeking an acupuncturist would likely be very helpful with your allergies. With a course of treatment, you should see significant and long lasting results.
Look for a local TCM/acupuncture college's student clinic. The student clinic normally charge much less for treatment. Students are supervised by the experienced teachers, and they should have insurance, too. You may find the students are very serious and try very hard to help you. And you will be appreciated for helping them to gain more experience.
Myself and my mom both are taking acupuncture treatment at the student clinic in the college where I'm studying. The results are amazing.
Thank you for the advice, I'll check into local options.