Flower at the gatesFlower at the gates Photo by: leojmelsrub

Spring in the northwest is really very beautiful. There are so many different flowers and trees in bloom at different times, it's hard (for me) to keep track. Spring is the time of waking up, and the earth opens up in beauty after a reasonably cold winter here.

This season, while full of life and new beginnings, also signals the blossoming of certain plants which can cause those with sensitive skin a lot of discomfort. Rashes and reactions to the flowers, pollen, and pollution in the air can really wreak havoc on those with "thin skin." There are a lot of great techniques and herbal formulas that acupuncture and oriental medicine use to relive pain. There are several protocols for severe skin rashes that are effective, but they do take time.

The seven-star needle (also called plum-blossom) technique (check out this link for a quick video demonstration) sounds horrible, but is really very effective for relieving the itching sensation caused by rashes. The idea behind it is to release the heat that builds up from the histamine reaction, and it is done by tapping the tool over the area the rash covers.

My personal experience has been that while herbal TCM formulas are not as quick to treat the itching as a topical steroid cream, they are more effective in the long run. Treating the root of the problem is how skin diseases need to be treated- your body is reacting for a reason! Only treating the manifestation, which is the rash, doesn't stop it from  recurring.

Talk to your practitioner about your dermatological needs- acupuncture is also great for eczema, acne, and many other skin conditions, but each case needs to be individually assessed.

Enjoy the sunshine this week!