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Let's talk about the feeling of moxibustion in A015

At the end of July, I went to Taizhou to study and opened the door to acupuncture. I finally dared to give people acupuncture (see A004 boldness and caution).
Another gain is that I have reacquainted myself with moxibustion. The purpose of this study was to learn the art of moxibustion so that I can treat my mother's illness. She has wind-cold-damp bi in her thigh, which is numb and painful, affecting her mobility. She has visited many doctors, and local treatments with herbal medicine have had limited effect. Acupuncture and cupping are effective but too painful to endure. I think in this situation, moxibustion should be the most suitable treatment.

As of today, I have used about 50 moxa sticks on my mother, and my understanding of moxibustion has far surpassed that of the first stick. This article intends to discuss the sensation of moxibustion. Moxibustion sensation is relatively unknown, and few people know that moxibustion can produce a sensation, even similar to acupuncture!

Let me quote a passage from the teacher's material about moxibustion sensation:

What is moxibustion sensation?#

Moxibustion sensation refers to the phenomenon of heat, wind, coolness, coldness, numbness, swelling, acidity, heaviness, and pain perceived by oneself during moxibustion. The occurrence of moxibustion sensation is the result of the dual effects of physical and pharmacological actions of moxa fire, which stimulates and promotes the circulation of meridian qi in the body, and the qi of the meridian interacts with the pathogenic qi of the lesion during the circulation process, resulting in a series of moxibustion sensation phenomena. These phenomena are the true manifestation of the circulation of moxa fire and meridian qi and the existence of disease qi. The occurrence of moxibustion sensation directly affects the effectiveness of moxibustion. This moxibustion sensation is just a self-perception. Some people are more sensitive and can perceive it, while others are less sensitive and cannot perceive it.
The strength of moxibustion sensation in moxibustion represents the degree of blockage of the body's meridians in a sense. The occurrence of moxibustion sensation and its intensity indicate that the meridians in the body are unobstructed, and the effect of regulation is rapid. The absence of moxibustion sensation indicates that pathogenic qi is severely accumulated in the meridians and needs to be unblocked before moxibustion can have a better effect.

Factors affecting the occurrence of moxibustion sensation#

The existence and occurrence of moxibustion sensation are often influenced by various conditions and factors such as environment, technique, pathology, time, and individual differences.

  1. The strength of stimulation and the number of stimulations. During moxibustion, the fire must be balanced and continuous, and a certain amount of action must be achieved in order for the basic rules of moxibustion sensation and transmission to appear. If the fire is interrupted, the already induced sensation will weaken, retreat, and disappear. Generally speaking, the stronger the stimulation, the longer the time, and the more frequent the stimulation, the easier the transmission of sensation will occur. However, sometimes even with a strong intensity of stimulation and a not too long time, the transmission of sensation may be very slow or difficult to occur.

  2. Individual differences. Individual differences have a significant relationship with moxibustion sensation. Among normal people, moxibustion sensation varies from person to person, which is why there is the saying of "meridian-sensitive people". There are also obvious differences due to individual factors. For example, among people of the same gender, the same age, and the same disease, when moxibustion is performed in a unified way at the same time, person A will have various sensations, while person B will be very slow or difficult to perceive.

  3. The influence of environmental conditions. In a warm and quiet environment, with moist skin and concentrated thoughts, moxibustion sensation is more likely to occur, and the transmission speed is also faster. On the contrary, in a cold, noisy environment, with dry skin and distracted thoughts, moxibustion sensation is more likely to be slow or cannot be perceived, and the speed is slower.

  4. The influence of the severity of the lesion. The occurrence of moxibustion sensation is related to the duration of the disease and the severity of the medical history. If the disease is mild, the corresponding moxibustion sensation will be enhanced and appear. If the disease is severe and prolonged, various moxibustion sensations will naturally be slow or weakened.

  5. The technique and mentality of the operator. The skill, seriousness, patience, impatience, and doubt of the operator are also important factors affecting moxibustion sensation and effectiveness.

Classification of moxibustion sensation#

The heat, wind, coolness, coldness, numbness, swelling, acidity, heaviness, and pain expressed by moxibustion sensation can be divided into three categories according to the different effects expressed by moxibustion at different stages:

  1. Moxa fire circulation: Warmth is the dynamic moxibustion sensation that appears in the first stage of moxibustion, which is the benign reaction of moxa fire automatically circulating and promoting the warming and circulation of qi and blood in the body. Because fire belongs to a dynamic nature and has the function of spreading, the warmth expressed by moxa fire circulation is also dynamic and diverse, with three forms of penetrating heat, transmitting heat, and expanding heat. Penetrating heat refers to the warmth of moxa fire penetrating from the surface of the body to the deep layers of the muscles, with the effect of penetrating before moxibustion and penetrating after moxibustion. Transmitting heat refers to the warmth of moxa fire transmitting to the distal end along a certain meridian or direction, with the effect of transmitting up and down. Expanding heat refers to the warmth of moxa fire spreading from one point of the body to the surrounding area, with the effect of expanding one point to a larger area. The appearance of these three forms of warmth will make the person feel warm and comfortable, and the symptoms of the disease will be relieved.

  2. Struggle between righteousness and evil: Numbness, swelling, acidity, heaviness, and pain are the static moxibustion sensations that appear in the second stage of moxibustion, which are the normal reactions of the struggle between the body's righteous qi and pathogenic qi. When moxa fire circulation produces a warm moxibustion sensation, it will stimulate and promote the circulation of qi and blood in the body, and when it encounters the pathogenic qi of the lesion, it will cause intense struggle, resulting in tension in tissues such as meridians and muscles, causing fluctuations in the circulation of qi and blood, and thus numbness, swelling, acidity, heaviness, and pain will appear as static moxibustion sensations in the lesion or the meridian to which the lesion belongs. The appearance of this moxibustion sensation indicates the generation of righteous qi in the body and the beginning of the struggle against pathogenic qi.

  3. Expulsion of pathogenic qi: Wind, coolness, and coldness are the dynamic moxibustion sensations that appear in the third stage of moxibustion, which are the benign reactions of the body's strong righteous qi and weak pathogenic qi, and the excretion of pathogenic qi. When the moxa fire continuously fumigates the corresponding acupoints, it will accelerate the circulation of qi and blood and enhance the righteous qi, excreting the pathogenic qi in the lesion or the meridian to which the lesion belongs. A slight cool breeze will be felt in the corresponding area. This indicates that the body's righteous qi is starting to excrete the pathogenic qi.

Common types of moxibustion sensation#

  1. During penetrating heat moxibustion, the heat from moxibustion penetrates from the surface of the skin at the moxibustion point to the inside of the body, sometimes even reaching the organs. For example, when moxibustion is performed on the Zhongwan point, the entire stomach area will feel warm.

  2. During dispersing heat moxibustion, the heat from moxibustion spreads from the moxibustion point to the surrounding area. For example, when moxibustion is performed on the Guanyuan point, the heat will not only go inward but also spread to the sides of the waist.

  3. During transmitting heat moxibustion, the heat from moxibustion starts at the moxibustion point and travels along the meridian to distant parts, and even reaches the lesion. For example, when moxibustion is performed on the Baliao point, the heat will reach the root of the thigh and even the soles of the feet.

  4. The moxibustion site is not hot or slightly hot, but the area far from the moxibustion site feels very hot. This moxibustion sensation generally occurs along the meridian. For example, when moxibustion is performed on several points on the shoulder of the small intestine meridian, the arms and back will feel hot.

  5. The surface is not hot or slightly hot, but the deep tissues under the skin, and even the chest and abdominal cavities, feel very hot. For example, when moxibustion is performed on the Shenshu point, the kidneys in the abdomen will feel hot.

  6. During moxibustion, non-heat sensations occur at the moxibustion point or at a distance from the moxibustion point, such as soreness, numbness, swelling, pain, heaviness, coldness, itching, etc. For example, when moxibustion is performed on the Sanyinjiao point, the soles of the feet will feel cold, as if a breeze is blowing, and there will be a slight coolness between the toes. This is called dispelling cold. Another example is when moxibustion is performed on the Yongquan point, there will be a slight numbness in the toes.

  7. The heat, swelling, and pain generated at the moxibustion site spread deeply and far, and the symptoms of the disease are relieved wherever they reach. This feeling is most common in patients with rheumatism and frozen shoulder. Moxibustion can quickly relieve pain in the affected area.

In summary, moxibustion sensation is very important. If you carefully feel the moxibustion sensation, the effect of moxibustion will be multiplied! The above-mentioned types of moxibustion sensation deepen in the process of moxibustion. The sixth and seventh types indicate that the pure yang qi of moxibustion is transmitted along the meridians, and the expected therapeutic effect of moxibustion is achieved. Moxibustion sensation is not limited to the moxibustion site, but can be transmitted along the meridians.

Personal thoughts#

A few days ago, I encountered moxibustion sensation for the first time when I was practicing on my senior brother's girlfriend. She would feel itchy in a certain area when moxibustion was applied, and coincidentally, I had read about moxibustion sensation in this material before, although I didn't read it in detail, I knew that there was such a thing, so I connected the two, and yes, this itchiness is moxibustion sensation! She didn't practice in vain, she felt it in just one session!

In the past few days, I have also encountered this situation when moxibustion was applied to my mother. Only a certain area would feel itchy when moxibustion was applied, and it wouldn't itch if moxibustion was not applied or if it was applied to a different area.

Later, when moxibustion was applied to the affected area of my mother, the pain would intensify.

Today, it happened again. As moxibustion was applied, my mother felt as if water was flowing into the area near the acupoint, about the size of a chopstick, and it swelled up and was unbearable.

Today, when I wrote this article, I read the teacher's material carefully for the first time. It is very comprehensive and answers all my current questions. I won't repeat what is already in the material, please read it yourself and find where my cases correspond to in the material.

Finally#

Welcome everyone to share the moxibustion sensations you have encountered.

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