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Did you know you had a ‘Calming’ nerve?

Did you know you had a ‘Calming’ nerve and you can use it to benefit your health? Let me tell you about it.

As you know, our nervous system is a very complex system, made up of the brain, spinal cord and nerves. It is our body’s communication system and controls a lot of the body’s functions.

An important part of our nervous system is the network of cranial nerves that connect the brain to our head, neck and body. They are either sensory or motor. Think of our sense of smell, taste and touch and movement of muscles. These are just some of the functions of the cranial nerves.

Parts of our nervous system operate automatically eg breathing, digestion, heart rate. Our sympathetic nerves are involved in our ‘fight or flight’ response, physical activity, heart rate and innervation of many body processes.

Parasympathetic nerves on the other hand, are our ‘rest and digest’ nerves. They regulate the function of organs during rest and have a slowing down or dampening effect.

This is where the ‘Calming’ nerve comes in. It is called the Vagus nerve and is the tenth cranial nerve. It’s also one of the most important parasympathetic nerves and one of the longest in the body. It originates in the Brain stem and travels right through the neck, chest, abdomen and the digestive system to the middle of the large intestine. Its’ name comes from ‘vagabond’ and it’s known as the wandering nerve.

The Vagus nerve is truly a calming nerve because it slows down breathing and heart rate so aids in relaxation. It communicates between the gut and the brain and decreases stress, anxiety and fear. It controls our digestion and slows down heart rate. It is also involved in the immune system and decreases inflammation.

Did you know you had a ‘calming’ nerve? We all do and can use it to benefit our health? We are living in an unprecedented time, when so much is out of our control. The news is full of drama and alarm and our stress response has never been so activated. It’s very easy to get caught up in that ‘fight or flight’ mode and never truly relax.

This is where the Vagus nerve comes in. You can work the nerve point for it on your face whenever you are feeling stressed. Do it on a daily basis and you will start to see its’ benefits. You can find the chart here.

You can also take measures to decrease your reaction to stress by avoiding the news, spending time in nature, exercising, eating healthily (most of the time), doing meditation, laughing, being creative and putting some more fun back into your day.

When so much is out of our control, it’s so important to remember what remains in our control. Working the Vagus nerve, our ‘calming’ nerve is something every one of us can do. After all, reducing our stress and staying relaxed is one of the best ways to stay healthy.

Warmest wishes,

Judy xxx

References: Multireflexology Dien Chan by Patrick Aguilar Cassara & Anna Roca, https://www.healthline.com/health/12-cranial-nerves, https://courses.lumenlearning.com/boundless-ap/chapter/functions-of-the-autonomic-nervous-system/, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318128#What-is-the-vagus-nerve, Touchpoint Denmark – Webinar on Digestion by Dorthe Krogsgaard and Peter Lund,

Disclaimer: Please note that all information in this article is the opinion of the author and obtained through her research and knowledge and the above references. It is not meant to replace medical advice and a medical opinion should always be obtained for any health condition.

first aid tools

Can Facial Reflexology be used as a First Aid tool?

First aid

If you asked me, can Facial Reflexology be used as a first aid tool, my answer would be, definitely! I’m not talking about a life or death situation, though there is a resuscitation point on the face, but I’m discussing those aches and pains that can disrupt our lives when they present. Knowing a few ‘first aid’ techniques that you can easily use, can make all the difference.

Our face contains many neurological pathways that connect directly with the Brain. Our brain sends messages to our nervous and endocrine systems to bring about a response. Dien Chan Facial Reflexology was originally developed in Vietnam by an acupuncturist, Professor Chau.

He first used it to treat those who were ill and addicted to drugs following the Vietnam War. He initially used needles, but later found that working certain points on the face using only his fingers, was equally effective. It was also more affordable, for the many who would benefit from his services.

He found that certain points were more painful than others and were specific for a particular symptom. A reflex point will only react if there is an imbalance or disease process in the organ. These tools I’m about to mention, do not replace a medical consultation. They do however, help relieve pain and discomfort until you can receive further treatment if needed.

Many of us suffer from the occasional Headache. For some it is more severe and others may even get Migraines. Try these facial nerve points next time you start to feel a headache coming on. You may very well find that you don’t need any further intervention. You can find a facial reflex chart here: https://solevitality.com.au/headache-handout/

Back pain is a very common symptom and can occur as a result of poor posture, lifestyle, sprains and strains, a lack of fitness or due to a disease process. It can be extremely debilitating and can cause significant disruption to your life. These facial points may help ease muscle spasms and relieve the pain. The corresponding chart can be found here: https://solevitality.com.au/back-pain-handout/

I sometimes wake with a sore neck, especially if I have slept awkwardly or stayed somewhere with uncomfortable pillows. It can feel really painful to have restricted movement of your head and may sometimes lead to an accompanying headache. Try these points next time you wake with a stiff neck. They can work very quickly to relieve any discomfort. Find them here: https://solevitality.com.au/neck-pain/

Do you every overeat or get abdominal cramps if you have eaten something that disagrees with you? Maybe you have had a stomach bug with abdominal spasms? I recently had some gut issues and although I needed medical intervention and consequently medication, these nerve points helped relieve a lot of my discomfort, while I was waiting for the medication to work. You can use these points whenever you have an upset stomach or abdominal cramps. Follow this link here: https://solevitality.com.au/gut-or-abdominal-pain/

This next reflex point is also known as a Resuscitation point. If someone collapses, obviously call for an ambulance and start whatever First aid is warranted. This point however, has been found to be very useful for fainting or to expel a foreign body if someone is choking. If ever you are feeling faint yourself, you can work this point too. You can find it here: https://solevitality.com.au/resuscitation-point/

These are just a few examples of how Facial Reflexology can be used as a First Aid tool. Often these nerve points will ease the symptoms without further intervention being needed. Sometimes when the pain persists, these points will support you until you can receive additional help and remember, always seek medical assistance if pain persists or becomes a serious issue.

It’s very easy to pop a pill whenever pain strikes but many medications have side effects. Of course, medication may be needed for a disease process or chronic condition but if sudden pain strikes, try these nerve reflex points to see if they can make a difference. You may be surprised at how effective they are.

Warmest wishes,

Judy xxx

References: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/back-pain/symptoms-causes/syc-20369906, Multireflexology Dien Chan by Patrick Cassara and Anna Roca.

Disclaimer: Please note that all information in this article is the opinion of the author and obtained through her research and knowledge and the above references. It is not meant to replace medical advice and a medical opinion should always be obtained for any health condition.