The brain is called The Ocean of Marrow. As the kidneys produce marrow, it is therefore believed that anyone who develops Alzheimer’s must have weak kidney energy and it is generally believed that shrinkage of brain mass is diagnostic of Alzheimer’s. The acupuncture treatment for Alzheimer’s is almost exactly the same as for Epilepsy and, as the cause of Parkinson’s Disease is similar, that treatment is also similar.
Alzheimer’s is caused by shrinkage of the Ocean of Marrow but in all these diseases – Alzheimer’s, Epilepsy and Parkinson’s – spleen and kidney energy will be weak, kidney and liver yin will be weak, mucus in the blood may block heart orifices causing loss of consciousness while stasis in blood vessels will be decreasing the blood and qi supply to the brain.
In general, the patient will be older, excessively emotional and suffer from chronic disease with loss of physical strength. Stasis of qi and blood flow will be present and all the physical and mental problems are caused by this decrease in energy. The brain marrow is deficient in qi while the brain cells are deprived of nutrition and, therefore, shrink. The entire Ocean of Marrow shrinks and the patient’s spirit and consciousness becomes dull. At the end, it is gone.
Therefore, the symptoms of Alzheimer’s that result from this deterioration are:
- intellectual processes diminish
- patient’s lose their sense of direction
- they forget their past and the people they have known
- they forget the name of objects and their use
- they can’t read and are not interested in television.
At the beginning of the disease process, the patient prefers to sleep. The initial mild symptoms are that, while they can communicate, they quickly forget any information. It is difficult for them to retain their balance. As the symptoms advance, they can’t talk – or can only talk to themselves. Emotions are always variable and, like a child, they become totally dependent on the person who is physically closest to them. Sometimes they may refuse to eat but generally they eat a lot. It is easy for them to experience a CVA/stroke and, because their brain has been grossly affected, any form of physiological problem can occur. They require 24 hour care.
The principles of Acupuncture for Alzheimer’s
The principles of treatment are to first make the spleen healthy in order to prevent production of mucus and to increase the volume of rising qi. Then increase energy to liver and kidneys in order to get qi and blood to the marrow. All treatments are involved with restoring the flow of qi and blood in order to open the orifices and recover consciousness.
Acupuncture treatments are the same as for epilepsy. In addition, they can also be performed under or around the navel – but this treatment works best if the patient is not too old and does not have ear and eye problems. Dantien is the area of the Door of Life – the origin of qi. Treating this area accesses the energy of the pre-natal life force and this will increase the brain marrow; it is as though there are two switches for accessing this energy – one at the navel and the other at the top of the head at GV20.
Three needles are inserted o.5 body inches below the navel. The needles on the left and right are inserted at the Kidney Meridian while the remaining needle is inserted on the midline. They are all inserted at a 45’ angle until you just feel the tip of each needle barely touching the ligament that lies below the navel. Then these needles will access the very strong yang energy stored at Dantien and cause the energy to move upwards.
In the morning, herbs are given that raise yang qi to the brain during the daytime. In the evening, increase the yin – the marrow and the blood – to kidney and liver. These treatments should always be accompanied by herbs to open the blockages (the areas of stasis) in the flow. And always pay attention to the mucus which corresponds to metal and can be blocking the flow of qi.