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Overly sensitive nervous system


I'm treating a female patient (41) for whiplash problems. However, her nerves ( or nervous system) is severely oversensitive ( over activated) to any touching, leave alone needles. I do treat her very carefully with the smallest needles possible ( and only a few) . But even touching her to palpate will have her jump to the ceiling. She discribes it als 'not really painfull but more like reflexes. Shivering more. This sensation happens to any part of het body. Now my question is if there's a formula or specific point which can ease/ calm her Nerves down? With minimum touching? ( sorry if my English isn't correct) hope you understand my question.

thank you! Eline


To me from the description it sounds like her upper limbs have turned hypertonic. You may give a try by choosing Zhizheng SI 7 which lies in the line joining SI 5 and SI 8. However, the first thing you need to know is whether it&#39s upper motor neuron lesion and how large it is. Because in my own clinical setting I predominantly have been using Dr Tan&#39s balance method of acupuncture combined with some Blood-letting from Jing(well) points. The overall result is amazing.


Thank you! I tried Balance method and with positive result, however for only a short period of time. I know bloodletting works wel for letting the yang energy out in case of whiplash. Did&#39nt dare to do it yet. you do all the jing well points? Hands? Both sides? Only once or every treatment.


I know how she feels. I had a big problem with whiplash and it took many treatments from a range of practitioners to sort it - that whole hypervigilance thing is very real and hard to describe.

I found cranial osteopathy worked well with acupuncture and herbs - good old xiao yao wan was excellent. However, what became clear was that my reaction was connected to an earlier traumatic episode in my life and the whiplash was triggering a response related to that. It might be worth you reading around Somatic Release Therapy - Peter Levine, and Babette Rothschild are the two best known names in the field.

Don&#39t stop doing what you are doing, it is very beneficial. But it may be you need to work alongside other therapists to help this woman heal.

Good luck to both of you! It took a couple of years before I was free of problems but, i&#39m fine now.


I would start by treating her only face down (on the massage table) with her head in a face cradle. This helps just so she can relax, not see the needles. I would start the treatment with tuina, light at first and then progressively deeper as she gets used to touch. Start tuina on the lower part of the body and then try to move up around the neck/shoulders and upper back. Then start with a few needles at the lower part of her body first - so UB 60, then HT 7 - be sure to use an insertion tube and possibly use seirin or some other light gauge japanese needle. Then do GV 19 which is our system modulates the sensory cortex of the brain. Light cupping would also be helpful. Do a treatment where she is comfortable and most should go well after that. Afterwards you will hopefully be able to do an increasingly wide range of points.


In the Kiiko Matsumoto style of acupuncture practice, a &#39busy hara&#39 is discussed, whereby touching the abdomen anywhere leads to a jumpy response, much like you have described. It is associated with an overly active nervous system, and the suggested way to help calm the nervous system to allow you to continue with your work (which I have tried and found to be effective), is to use a moxibustion device call a tiger warmer and massage the surface of the ear. This is a metal tube in which is contained a piece of incence made of moxa, the combination of the warmth massage the points in the ear along with the nature of the moxa helps to calm the nervous system down and help the patient to relax. This device releases a lot less smoke than the standard moxa stick, if that is of an issue in your clinic.


Although the balance method is equally helpful in this case of hyper responsive nervous system, also called hypertonic state, the blood-letting at jing well points can best be tried in jing(well) points of feet.

The Jing(well) points on the Yin channels belong to the wood element.Another way to use the Jing-well points that treat more than just the Wood element, can be found in using Pc-9 with Kid-1. This technique makes use of the above/below combination which, in this case, has the effect of balancing fire (Pericardium) and water (Kidney) which balances above and below along with fire and water. Connecting the Qi of these two opposing elemental forces calms the Shen.

I did it for treating cervical spondylosis as part of my research and also, I and several others ran experimental trial in rodents which seemed promising enough. The blood-letting from Jing(Well) points at feet was sought in the cerebral edema of rodents as the study was double blind control trial with mannitol drip.

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