How does acupressure cure constipation?

Constipation has pathological causes or due to lifestyle, exercise, nutrition... not in moderation. In fact, this symptom is often uncomfortable for the patient. Therefore, the methods of laxative, convenient, stimulating intestinal motility ... are more and more interested. In particular, acupressure treatment for constipation is gradually recognized and popularized by the people. Here, the article of Traditional Medicine Doctor Pham Le Phuong Mai will send readers a simple but effective acupressure treatment for constipation.


Overview of constipation

According to Modern Medicine

According to the literature, a subject is considered constipated when there are signs such as: having bowel movements less than 3 times/week, or the nature of the stool is dry, large, hard, difficult to push, etc. may be accompanied by regional pain. lower abdomen.1

Usually for a number of reasons:

  • Lifestyle: lack of fiber, drink less water, habit of "fasting" going to the toilet, sedentary, ...
  • Pregnant or postpartum women, the elderly, people after spinal cord injury, cerebrovascular accident...
  • Side effects of drugs (laxatives, aluminum-containing gastric protectors, iron-containing drugs) …
  • Pathology: gastrointestinal disorders, central nervous system, endocrine metabolism damage, ...

According to Traditional Medicine

According to Oriental medicine, constipation is often caused by:

  • Vaginal discharge: common in women after giving birth many times, the elderly... at this time, the muscles are flabby, and muscle tone is reduced. Or long-term illness, Pi Vi works poorly and causes illness.
  • Air stagnation: often due to occupation, sedentary habits or changing posture, etc.
  • Blood damage: anemia causes new fluid to decrease, difficulty in defecation.2

How does acupressure cure constipation?

According to oriental medicine, constipation is caused by many causes

General direction of treatment

  • Improve lifestyle and nutrition: drink enough water and add fiber (20-35g/day) from vegetables, grains, etc., and limit the use of stimulants and spicy foods...
  • Exercise and exercise sensibly, try to create a habit and reflex to have a bowel movement on time.
  • Laxatives include: drugs to increase stool volume, drugs to increase water permeability, stimulate bowel movements, anal pumps with lubricants...
  • Applying traditional medicine treatments to help laxative, convenient, beneficial for Pi, useful gas, qi ... such as nourishing life, acupuncture , ear acupuncture, acupressure massage to treat constipation ...

In particular, we should combine many methods of treating constipation together to increase the benefits to be achieved, under the guidance of a physician.

How does acupressure cure constipation?

Adding enough fiber and water is an effective way to prevent and treat constipation

The effectiveness of acupressure to treat constipation

In the past, people considered acupressure to be a way to support blood and qi to run smoothly, relieve meridian stagnation, break ties, clear heat, laxative, and facilitate circulation. In addition, the therapy also helps the Sphincter to move and absorb the essence from food better, maintaining the function of the viscera in the body.

Currently, many studies have documented the benefits of acupressure for constipation in people of all ages. Especially for chronic constipation, when treating, in addition to medication, the doctor will instruct the patient more about acupressure massage therapy. This technique creates pressure from the hands on the abdomen to promote digestion, stimulate intestinal peristalsis, improve intestinal contractions, increase circulation to nourish organs, relax nerves, fight inflammation... , stools are formed and move smoothly, the feeling of bowel movements is also more comfortable. In addition, these movements also support digestion, reduce symptoms such as poor appetite, bloating, belching, indigestion ...

How to treat constipation by acupressure

Indications and contraindications for acupressure

Indications : Most cases of constipation problems due to many causes such as geographical location, poor blood circulation, occupation, lifestyle...2

Contraindications :

  • Constipation is caused by a surgical disease such as intestinal obstruction...2 or a life-threatening emergency such as heavy bleeding, severe trauma, lethargy, not alertness...
  • The area of ​​the body where the technique is performed has open wounds, sores, tumors, boils, etc., or the patient is in a state of drunkenness, fullness, hunger, fatigue, etc.
  • Pregnant women should not acupressure the abdomen, should be consulted by a doctor carefully.

Acupressure points in acupressure to cure constipation

Here are a few acupressure positions to support digestion, especially suitable for acupressure to treat constipation , laxative, clear bowel movements, stimulate blood circulation in the intestines...

  • Thien Khu Acupoint: Measure horizontally on both sides of the navel, 2 cun on each side (or about 3 cm).3
  • The Qi Hai point is located on the vertical line passing through the navel, 1.5 cun (about 2 cm) below the navel
  • The missing Shen point was determined to be located right in the navel area.
  • Center point: from the navel measured straight up 4 cun.
  • Tuc Tam Ly point: from the outer concavity of the knee bone, measure down to 3 cuns, 1 finger from the crest of the tibia to the outside.

In addition, depending on the type of disease, the doctor can add a number of acupuncture points such as:

  • Bo Pi Vi: Pi du, Vi du, Dai Dai du…
  • Poor Yang Qi supplement: Quan Nguyen, Quy Lai…4
  • Complementing Yin, Supplementing Blood: Tam Am Giao, Thai Khe, Cach Du, Cao Hoang...4

How does acupressure cure constipation?

Some acupuncture points help laxatives, facilitate bowel movements, stimulate digestion, etc.

How long is the treatment?

With the acupressure points mentioned above, the doctor or the patient can do it themselves by:

  • First, the patient relaxes the abdomen, as well as the body, relaxes the mind, should not be stressed.
  • Rub hands to warm up, can use essential oils to warm the abdomen, reduce friction ...
  • Then, use force from the finger (usually the thumb) to conduct manipulation, pressing, ... at each acupuncture point.
  • Should be combined with massaging the abdomen in a clockwise direction, for more benefits to be achieved.

As recommended, each acupoint can be pressed for about 1-2 minutes at a time, then change to another acupoint. Then, repeat the positions, for a total of 15-20 minutes. If the desired results are not achieved, you can do more 2-3 times a day or extend the course to 20 days. In addition, for chronic constipation, the doctor may prescribe 2-3 more courses of treatment.

Note, taboo when acupressure

In the process of manipulation, should use gentle force, increase gradually, should not be rough, use force too suddenly. This can lead to damage to the skin or internal organs. In addition, we also need to try to determine the exact acupuncture point to avoid unwanted risks.

Pay attention to monitor the patient's reaction and status, promptly adjust the appropriate movements.

It should be coordinated with regular breathing, rhythmic breathing.

Other traditional methods of treating constipation

Acupuncture, Acupuncture

For a long time, the method of using needles into acupuncture points has been recognized to support the treatment of constipation. Choose the same acupoint as above, about 30 minutes a day, lasting 15-20 days. In addition, the doctor may prescribe ear acupuncture therapy, depending on the disease:

Constipation for a long time with reduced symptoms of new fluid (dry mouth and throat, mouth sores, red tongue, etc.):

  • Description: Heart cells, Plant nerves…
  • Nourishing: Than Mon, Pi, Can…

Constipation due to blood damage:

  • Description: College, Elementary School
  • Acupuncture: Pi Can

Constipation due to bad breath with symptoms of flabby muscles, poor appetite, bloating, slow digestion...

  • Description: Great, abdominal area
  • Aphrodisiac: Sympathetic2

See also : Do you know why acupuncture can cure diseases?


Many studies have shown benefits when combining massage with acupressure for constipation . Furthermore, the subject is able to perform these simple movements on their own. First, the patient chooses the most comfortable position (sitting, supine, ...) to relax. Next, close your hands to gradually warm up and then massage the abdomen in a clockwise direction. This will affect the epigastrium, around the navel, lower abdomen… for about 5 minutes. To increase efficiency, we should use hot oil to massage both to reduce friction and warm up the abdomen, soften muscles, benefit the digestive system...5

How does acupressure cure constipation?

Combining massage with acupressure for constipation is more effective.


Around us, there are many herbs that have been used for a long time to treat constipation, such as spinach , papaya , black sesame , buffalo leaves , rhubarb ...

Indeed, acupressure therapy for constipation brings many advantages and benefits to humans. However, because acupressure almost only helps reduce symptoms, with severe and prolonged illness, doctors will combine many other methods, as well as treat the cause, if any.