Moxibustion is a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves burning dried mugwort (moxa) on or near acupuncture points to stimulate the body's natural healing processes. Moxa therapy is also called moxibustion. It is often used in conjunction with Chinese acupuncture, another component of traditional Chinese medicine, which involves the insertion of thin needles into specific points on the body to promote balance and healing. Chinese medicine emphasizes a holistic approach to health, taking into account the interconnectedness of the body, mind, and environment. In addition to acupuncture and moxibustion, Chinese medicine may also include the use of Chinese herbs and other natural remedies to address various health concerns.
The indications for moxibustion treatment include a wide range of weakness diseases, mostly of a chronic character, such as bronchitis, asthma or diarrhea. Moxibustion is especially effective in weakness after convalescence and in depression. Indications for moxibustion chronic bronchitis, Bronchial asthma Chronic diarrhea, Depression, Bowel disease, Hypotension, Exhaustion, Feeling of coldness in the body and Chronic disease. Moxibustion for weight loss has been used. Moxibustion pregnancy moxibustion for breech is an important moxibustion at home procedure than can be useful.
Moxa therapy is not used in - Fever, Acute infections, Hypertension, Acute and chronic hemorrhage, During menstruation, Nervousness and overexcitement, Sleep disturbances.
If you are interested in trying Chinese acupuncture, moxibustion, or other Chinese medicine techniques, it is important to find a reputable practitioner near you who is knowledgeable in this area. They can help you determine which techniques are best suited to your individual needs and provide guidance on how to incorporate them into your healthcare routine.
Direct Moxibustion : Direct moxibustion is performed by putting the moxa cone directly on the selected acupuncture point and igniting it.
Non-scarring moxibustion : A moxa cone is placed on a point and ignited. When half or two thirds of it is burnt, remove the cone and replace it with another one. No blister should be formed, and there should be no festering or scar formation. Moxa also can be used, which has a sticky adhesive paper underneath the moxa cone. The adhesive paper can be removed and the moxa can be placed directly on the skin. An advantage of this form of moxa is that there are no limitations on the patient's body positions.
Scarring moxibustion : Before moxibustion, onion or garlic juice is applied to the selected site to increase the adhesion of the moxa cone to the skin and increase the amount of stimulation provided by the moxa cone during the procedure. A moxa cone is then placed on the desired site, ignited, and allowed to completely burn out. This is repeated 5 to 10 times, often leading to a local burn, blister, festering, and eventual scar formation when the area is completely healed from the procedure. This method is often used to treat certain chronic diseases such as asthma, abdominal pain, irregular menstruation, Bi syndrome, impotence, and tumors.
Indirect Moxibustion : Indirect moxibustion is performed when an ignited moxa cone is placed on an insulated material and not directly in contact with skin. Moxibustion with ginger - A piece of ginger is sliced to about 0.5 cm thickness and several holes are punched through. The slice of ginger is applied to the desired area and the moxa cone is ignited on top of it. As soon as the patient feels the scorching sensation, the cone is removed and a new one is ignited in its place. This method of moxibustion is often used to treat symptoms diarrhoea, abdominal pain, painful joints, and so on.
Moxibustion with garlic : A perforated slice of garlic about 0.5 cm thick is applied to the desired area and a moxa cone is ignited on the slice of garlic. As in moxibustion with ginger, as soon as the patient feels the scorching sensation, the cone is removed and replaced with a new one. This method of moxibustion is often used to treat scrofula, tuberculosis, abdominal masses, early-stage skin cancer ulcerations and boils, and poisonous insect bites.
Moxibustion with salt : The navel is filled with salt to the level of the skin. A large moxa cone is placed on the salt and ignited. In the event that the patient has an “outie” (the navel is convex, or even simply not concave), a wet noodle can be placed around the navel and used as a retainer for the salt.
The navel is filled with salt to the level of the skin. A large moxa cone is placed on the salt and ignited. In the event that the patient has an “outie” (the navel is convex, or even simply not concave), a wet noodle can be placed around the navel and used as a retainer for the salt.
This method of moxibustion is known to be effective in treating abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhoea, pain around the umbilicus, pain caused by a hernia, and prolonged dysentery. It is also effective in restoring Yang from a state of collapse, where symptoms of excessive sweating, cold limbs, and undetectable pulse may manifest.
Moxibustion with Monkshood Cake : A coin-sized cake of monkshood powder mixed with alcohol is perforated and placed on the site selected for moxibustion. The moxa cone is placed on the cake and ignited. A lighted moxa stick is applied over the selected point. The level of heat and the duration of the therapeutic application are rather easy to control with this method, so it is commonly used in today's clinics.
Mild-Warming Moxibustion : An ignited moxa stick is applied over the desired point until mild warmth is achieved at that point and in the surrounding area. This is done for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the area itself becomes red.
Sparrow-Pecking Moxibustion : When this method of moxibustion is performed, the ignited moxa stick is rapidly pecked over the desired point with care being taken to avoid burning the skin. The moxa stick may also be evenly moved with a left to right motion.
Rotating Moxibustion : The ignited moxa stick is applied over the desired point with rotating circles or it follows the meridian pathway until a mild warming sensation is achieved and the patient feels very relaxed. This is a commonly used technique in the micro-acupuncture system.
Warming Needle : The practice of moxibustion with a warming needle is a combination of moxibustion and acupuncture. This method is often used for conditions in which needle retention and moxibustion are both necessary in order to achieve the therapeutic effects desired in the treatment being performed. After the acupuncture needle is properly inserted into the acupuncture point and De Qi is achieved, the needle handle is then wrapped with a unit of moxa wool. The moxa wool is ignited, causing a mild heat sensation around the point as the wool burns. This method of moxibustion serves to warm the meridians and promote the free flow of Qi and blood, thus effectively treating conditions such as painful joints as the result of cold-damp, or numbness with cold sensations and paralysis.
Warming Moxa Box : There are many different kinds of warming boxes, which are made of metal or wood. They are designed to hold moxa wool in the box. Once ignited, the box can be kept in place on a specific location or can be moved along the meridians. The moxa box is able to generate a warm sensation over a larger area. Another benefit of the box is it can be used for patients who are afraid of the moxa cones or roll.
The Process and Volume for Moxibustion: The volume for moxibustion, size of the moxa cone, and duration of the moxa stick application should be considered in relation to the patient's pathological condition, general constitution, age, and the site where moxibustion is to be applied. For acute onset of disease or patients with a strong constitution, use large moxa cones and more moxa. For chronic disease, elderly patients, young children, or patients with a weak constitution, use small moxa cones and less moxa. For points located on the face, head, and chest, use small moxa cones and less moxa. For the upper and lower back, shoulders, abdomen, and both thighs, use large moxa cones and more moxa. Three to seven moxa cones are applied to each point. The moxa stick is usually applied for 10 to 15 minutes at a time.
The contraindications for moxibustion are the abdominal and lumbosacral regions of pregnant women. Scarring moxibustion should not be applied to the face, near the sensory organs, or to any area near large blood vessels.
If small blisters appear, take care not to break them. They will be absorbed and heal by themselves. However, if large blisters appear, puncture and drain them with a sterilized needle. Then wrap the area with gauze. For conditions in which pus appears, the patient needs to rest in order to strengthen the body's resistance. Keep the site clean. The blisters should be dressed to prevent further infection.
For the micro-acupuncture system, the moxibustion technique is a great way to stimulate the needled area and apply passive activity to a diseased area. By using the moxibustion technique, the needle reaction can more easily reach the diseased area. Some of the moxibustion techniques are not useful in the micro-system because of their requirements, thunder fire moxa stick, and medicinal vesiculation. However, moxibustion is useful on local diseased areas while stimulating or retaining needles on the micro-system points.
Pain relief : Moxibustion may help alleviate various types of pain, such as back pain, neck pain, and menstrual cramps.
Improved digestion : Moxibustion can enhance digestion and alleviate symptoms related to gastrointestinal disorders such as bloating, diarrhea, and constipation.
Boosted immune system : Moxibustion may help stimulate the immune system, which can help prevent illness and improve overall health.
Stress reduction : Moxibustion can help reduce stress and anxiety, promoting relaxation and a sense of calm.
Breech pregnancy : Moxibustion may encourage a breech baby to turn to the head-down position, which can reduce the need for a C-section delivery.