There are many types of sinus problems, including allergy symptoms. Some sufferers
experience repetitive sinus infections. Some physicians view sinusitis as being related
to a person's genetic disposition. Chinese medicine looks at this problem with a
somewhat different view than Western medical practitioners. Traditional Chinese medicine
looks at sinusitis as fluid stasis, or the inability of the lungs to disperse water,
with excessive fluid retention causing the problem.
We know that many times sinus problems get worse when the weather is damp; the sinuses
being adversely affected by moisture. Sinus allergy symptoms occur when the body
is hypersensitive to allergens. The body's reaction is increased secretion. This
over-reaction to an allergen is the body's way of trying to flush out the allergen.
Symptoms such as tearing eyes and a runny nose are evidence of this flushing out
process. If the sinus cavity is blocked, backup pressure can cause a secondary headache
and a"stuffed-up" nose. Under these circumstances, many patients will not respond
well to antihistamines or steroids, except for systemic injections of steroids directly
into the blood stream.
As a practitioner of Chinese medicine, I view sinusitis as the body's inability to
cope with a specific allergen(s) due to fluid stasis. We notice many people develop
allergies later in life and that often times these people also have an associated
digestive disorder and/or lung problem. Persons with Fibromyalgia, kidney or liver
problems may have increased incidence of allergy discomfort because these conditions
can reduce fluid circulation in the body. With fluid trapped, circulation slows down
and the body cannot wash the allergens out in a timely manner.
Acupuncture, when gently applied to the face, has proven to be highly affective in
increasing fluid circulation in the sinus cavity. Patients have reported the experience
as"having opened the flood gates", with acupuncture having triggered the desired
response. Through acupuncture, we effectively flush out allergens and reduce swelling
of the sinus cavity, which in turn relieves discomfort such as headache and pain
in the face.