Over my 20+ years of treating people I have had hundreds of people come to me with stomach pain and/or a feeling of tension and tightness in the belly. Most have gone to their GP or health professional and I strongly recommend that people do that if they are experiencing stomach or abdominal pain. In many cases there isn’t a clear pathological reason for the pain or tension and people can often be left feeling frustrated, wondering if it’s just in their mind and unsure of what to do next.
Stomach pain can also affect peoples eating habits creating a lack of appetite, not being able to eat full meals or causing them to restrict their diets severely to see if it helps. The pain can be related to diet or it can be completely unrelated. Stomach pain can be acute or continuous. The pain can be felt higher up near the sternum (closer to the stomach) or it can be a lower down cramping sensation (closer to the intestines).
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine stomach tension or pain relates to cognitive stress, too may thoughts and over thinking. Abdominal tension and loops of thoughts are interconnected. It can have an effect on hormones that kick start digestion or interfere with the normal muscular movement of the stomach. If the stomach is tense then the gut isn’t in a relaxed state and is unable to digest properly.
I see a lot of people who are under a lot of stress in their jobs, their businesses and their lives.
Another large group are adolescents, particularly girls aged 11-16 who experience stomach tension and can’t eat and have been told its psychological or ‘in their heads by concerned parents who are think they may not be eating due to body issues or social media pressure and this is not always the case.
Stomach tension can relate to Irritable Bowel Syndrome or Ulcerated Colitis in my opinion and that’s why I focus my work on the stomach area just below the sternum which is where the digestive process begins. I work on relaxing the muscles around the area using acupressure and also connect to other acupressure points in the body at the same time.
If clients are experiencing lower abdominal pain, gas, cramping or PMS pain also use therapeutic abdominal massage to calm the muscles in and around the stomach to promote general relaxation and to reduce stress and tension in the body.
Stomach pain can also relate to mid back pain so I may also look for any postural issues to rule that out and it can also relate to eating too quickly (reflux, indigestion), worry, anxiety and insomnia. People may also have a headache, neck and shoulder pain that I treat using acupressure massage.
Following sessions with me clients report that:
- Pain is reduced
- Better digestion
- Able to resume a normal diet
- Mind is clearer
- More space for thinking
- Feel confident to leave the house