Eye Clinic

Acupuncture for Eye Health

Acupuncture may assist in achieving eye health

How Acupuncture May Help to Achieve Optimal Eye Health

Nowhere is the phrase, ‘the eyes are the windows to your soul’ more accurate than in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). According to TCM, each part of your eye is associated/linked to a corresponding organ and a particular element. For example, consider the following eye-body organ relationships:

  • The pupil – Kidneys
  • Lower and upper eyelids – Spleen
  • Corners of your eyes (canthi) – Heart
  • Conjunctiva – Lungs
  • Iris – Liver

So how does TCM treatment come into play regarding this eye-organ relationship? When you have a poor flow of qi (life energy) in any of the above organs, your eye’s resistance to environmental pathogens decreases along with the affected organ. Therefore, if you want to achieve optimal eye health, it may be worth considering acupuncture treatment.  Practitioners at Centre of Balance in Hamilton aim to boost your immune system, facilitate a strong qi, and consequently improve your eye health. Before we explain exactly how our acupuncture treatment works, let’s go through some of the risk factors for eye disease.

Risk Factors affecting your Eyes

Pathogens to your eyes are usually related to seasonal triggers. They can cause eye loss or damage your eyes. According to TCM, environmental pathogens can be categorized as either Yang conditions or Yin conditions. Yang conditions are often associated with acute cases as shown below.

  1. Summer Heat – Mucus discharge and inflammation
  2. Wind – Dramatic and sudden onset of vision loss
  3. Heat – Redness, inflammation, and swelling found in conjunctivitis patients
Acupuncture to treat Glaucoma

On the other hand, Yin factors such as dampness and cold are arguably the most common causes of eye complications as highlighted below.

  1. Cold – Results in slow and painful vision loss as seen in glaucoma, macular degeneration, and other chronic degenerative conditions. Cold blocks the flow of qi and hinders the circulation of nutrients and warmth to the eyes. It settles in the skin, vessels, and muscles around the eyes.
  2. Dryness – Redness and dry itchy eyes
  3. Dampness – Causes swelling and mucus secretion

What do TCM and Acupuncture say about these Pathogens?

The flow of your qi affects your whole body! This is one of the founding concepts of TCM. Any emotional, physical, or mental issue you are facing is not an isolated issue – but impacts your overall wellbeing.  To treat an eye disease, the acupuncturist will treat the associated organs to get them functioning properly and thereby achieve overall wellbeing as well as treating the eye condition.

Chinese medicine aims to facilitate proper energy flow around the body. When the energy flow along the meridians is smooth and uninterrupted, individuals often experience a sense of wellbeing and improved quality of life. However, when the flow is blocked by cold, heat, and other environmental pathogens highlighted above, illness and pain occur. Acupuncturists address this challenge by stimulating acupuncture points to gain access to the meridians and restore the optimal flow of qi (energy).

Treatments Offered at Centre of Balance

Centre of Balance offers treatment for most well-known eye conditions such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa (night blindness), and many more. Treatment incorporates a combination of acupuncture and traditional Chinese herbs to alleviate the symptoms and tackle the issue at its source. According to an article in the Oriental Medicine Newspaper, “…acupuncture is clearly an effective means of managing most chronic and degenerative eye diseases. Results have shown measurable improvement in approximately 70-80% of all cases treated.” Treatment is achieved by stimulating corresponding acupoints on the eye organ meridian discussed earlier in this post.

To improve treatment outcomes, our practitioners may prescribe moxibustion and/or traditional Chinese herbs.

For more information regarding your eye health, see  similar articles on our blog or contact us for individualized advice and treatment.

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Works Cited

Rosenfarb, Andy, ND, L.Ac. “Researching Retinitis Pigmentosa (Night Blindness) with Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine” Oriental Medicine Newspaper. February 2012