Care for Abdominal Pain- Aromatic Therapies and Energetic Medicine Combine
Shaida Sina, ND
As eclectic doctors, naturopathic physicians carry many tools in our medicine bags. In my practice, the energetic tools I use most include aromatic therapy, acupuncture, homeopathy, flower essences, mind-body medicine, hydrotherapy, sound therapy and Reiki.
I apply essential oil points using “drop therapy” (place the bottle with orifice reducer 3-6 inches above the point and allow it to drop freely). My first exposure with this drop technique was while using homeopathy. Dr. Drew Collins prescribed a remedy where the dosage was to fall through the air into my mouth. One’s intention and the act of dropping it work together to potentiate the remedy. This technique is also useful with essential oils and flower essences.
When a patient presents to my clinic with abdominal pain, aside from performing a thorough assessment – including history, symptom presentation, physical exam and labs – on occasion, I get a gut feeling the abdominal pain has a deep energetic tie. In those cases, I may use energetic healing modalities. This article explores a combination of those modalities.
The term aromatic-acupuncturerefers to the combination of essential oils with acupuncture. I have used essential oils and acupuncture in the following ways: essential oils only on acupuncture points (no needles); needles dipped in essential oils and then inserted; drop therapy onto the needle after it has been inserted; and hydrosol sprayed over a point with or without needle. Start simply by applying needles to some acupuncture points and essential oils to others.
Essence-puncturecombines flower essences with acupuncture. As with aromatic-acupuncture, I may substitute needles with flower essences, applying the essences on acupuncture points. Remember, the Ren meridian has corresponding points associated with chakras (energy centers). For example, Ren 17 corresponds to the heart chakra.
Following are possible ways to approach abdominal pain.
Acupuncture for Abdominal Pain
For general abdominal discomfort, the patient should lie supine so oils and flower essences can be applied with needles already inserted into the following points: Li 4, Lv 3 (4-gates), St 36 (could use either moxa or needle). To reach these appropriate back shu points, ask the patient to lie prone: UB 18 (liver), UB 19 (GB), UB 21 (stomach), UB 22 (SJ), UB 25 (large intestine), UB 27 (small intestine).
Consider using points Ren 6, Ren 12 and St 25 (the diamond). Apply essential oil of peppermint or chamomile (other oils may be used). If the patient suffers from nausea, include ginger essential oil on PC6.
Various types of flower essences are used in my office: Bach, FES, Blue Turtle and Desert Alchemy. During their education, most NDs are trained to some degree using Bach, so my examples will use these essences.
First, I assess which chakras require balancing. If two or three chakras need work, I may substitute a flower essence for a needle, and use an essential oil in combination with a flower essence.
Here are two variations of treatment of abdominal pain using flower essences.
Variation 1: A patient grieves over losing a baby and suffers from chronic lower abdominal pain. I would consider Star of Bethlehem flower essence on the second chakra (Ren 12) for the lower abdomen pain.
Variation 2: A patient fears loss of control and suffers from anxiety felt in the third chakra (Ren 6) upper abdomen. I would consider Cherry Plum flower essence.
It is not unusual to need to rebalance all chakras with a patient who goes through a miscarriage or death of a child.
Energetic medicine can get even more creative in combination.
Play sounds in the background during treatment. Choose appropriate sounds or music specific to the patient’s circumstance; a bubbling fountain, ocean sounds or tones, for example. Play at a very low volume.
The Mind-Body Connection
Sometimes it is effective for the patient to say affirmations with the flower essence. After inserting needles and applying oils, I place a drop of flower essence on the appropriate point, administer one drop under the tongue and ask the patient to repeat an affirmation.
In the case of the patient who was grieving and suffering from lower abdominal pain, I would suggest an affirmation such as, “I am filled with the healing light that soothes all grief and loss. This healing light has released all grief and trauma I have suffered. I am restored and made whole.”
Shaida Sina, ND, has been working in the field of medicine for more than 20 years. She received her BS from the University of Maryland, in the School of Medicine’s Department of Medical and Research Technology. During her first 10 years in health care, she worked in the field of laboratory medicine where she ultimately became lead technologist of a reference infectious disease laboratory. Dr. Sina began her studies in natural medicine in 1995 at SCNM and was the first naturopathic physician to do a clinical rotation at Mayo Clinic, where she trained in reproductive endocrinology. Her areas of clinical focus include women’s health care, pediatrics and general family practice.