A few weeks ago, a patient came in with a condition called “Trigger finger”. She has had this condition for over a year, she is able to bend her finger but it won’t straighten by itself. She went to the doctor, had her medication and shot, she has tried physiotherapy and massage, but the problem remains the same. Acupuncture is again, a last resort to her.
Trigger finger limits finger movement. When you try to straighten your finger, it will lock or catch before popping out straight.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, we focus on the meridians, when a person suffers from a condition like trigger finger, we think it is caused by stagnation of Qi in the meridians. When we treat, we won’t just work on the affected finger or tendon, we will work on the affected meridian.
For example, if the index finger is affected, we look at the meridian that is related, which in this case is the large intestine meridian. (Note, it is the meridian of large intestines that is affected, not the large intestines itself)
Upon physical examination, I found tender spots near the elbow and forearm (LI 8-12), and also on the palm area (LI 3-5)
I also checked other meridians and looked for tender spots. Then I chose the acupuncture points accordingly. It is surprising for the patient to find out there are so many tight, tender spots on her arm that she didn’t even realize, but for us, it indicates that our diagnosis is correct. When the energy of the meridians is blocked, pain is usually a consistent indication.
In this case, when the energy of the meridian on the forearm is not flowing smoothly, then of course your fingers cannot function properly. The same is true that if other meridians are blocked, related functions of the certain parts /organs of the body will not function well.
After 2 treatments, the patient starts to feel looser on the forearm, she felt that the trigger finger has more strength and can be straightened by itself from time to time, she still needs to straighten her finger with the help of the other hand.
After 4 treatments, she can straighten her finger effortlessly just like before. She came in twice a week so in the course of two weeks, her trigger finger is recovered. Trigger finger is a condition that affects the tendons in your fingers or thumb.
I find this condition more common in women who are between 50 to 70 years old than in men.
There are many reasons why this condition occur, the end result is always blockage of energy. Stay active, eat healthy, keep moving, so that your energy can flow freely and smoothly (both emotionally and physically), that will keep sickness or dis-ease away.
Can Acupuncture Actually Help With Trigger Finger
In Chinese Medicine, we see the body and mind as a whole and so through our understandings of all the connections, we treat the body as an organic whole being of mind, body and spirit.
Do the needles hurt?
Sometimes people feel like they have been stung at first but it only lasts a second.
One side of the body may be more sensitive than the other.
How does, putting needles in my ears and body work to help me?
We use specially made, tiny needles that when inserted into the ears, activate the sensors in the brain that are attached to the organ systems and the mind. The body needles are also very tiny and are inserted to activate points of energy lines called Meridians. This energy called “Qi” circulates 50 times in a 24 hour period through all of our organ systems and the needles are used to unblock the energy lines that had been clogging up.
How often do I have to come in?
We recommend that you commit to pre-scheduling 9 visits (3 per week). It is generally understood that it takes 21 days to change a habit. When you come in 3 days per week, your mind does not have time to move back and eventually, the new set point is created.