In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), acupressure has been used for about 2,000 years. It’s like acupuncture without the needles. It targets specific points on your body to release energy and facilitate healing. In the case of erectile dysfunction (ED), experts say this form of self-massage can improve your sexual health.
How Acupressure Works
Acupressure releases energy blocks in the body, via pathways called “meridians.” Blockages in these meridians can lead to pain and illness. Using either acupressure or acupuncture to help release them can correct imbalances and restore wellness.
“Acupuncture and acupressure work by stimulating both the nervous system and the vascular system,” according to Dr. Joshua Hanson, doctor of Oriental medicine from the Tampa Center for Acupuncture. Hanson says that, much like pharmaceuticals do, these approaches can cause blood vessels to dilate, allowing an erection to occur.
One of the benefits of acupressure is that you can do it at home by yourself.
How to Use Acupressure at Home
Acupressure involves applying firm pressure to specific points throughout the body.
- Begin by relaxing, taking several deep breaths.
- Find the pressure point and apply firm pressure for 30 seconds to one minute before moving on to the next.
Use small circular motions on each pressure point. Apply firm pressure, but make sure it’s not so strong that it causes pain.
Pressure Points for ED Treatment
The pressure points useful for the treatment of ED include:
Ht7 is at the crease of your wrist. It aligns with your pinkie and is about one finger’s width in from the edge.
Lv3 is on the top of your foot between your big and second toes and about 2 inches down.
Kd3 is above your heel and on the inside of your lower leg, near your Achilles tendon.
Sp6 is on the inside of your lower leg and four fingers’ width above your ankle bone.
St36 is on the front of your lower leg about one hand’s width below the knee and on the outside of your shinbone.
Acupuncturist Dylan Stein says other areas benefit from self-massage.
“Massaging the lower back and sacrum is very good for ED,” he says. “You can also massage the same area on the front, from your belly button to the pubic bone.”
Additional ED Treatments You Can Do at Home
Stein says acupressure and acupuncture are just a few solutions. For his patients, he often recommends things like mindfulness meditation along with diet and lifestyle modifications.
Hanson takes a similar approach, suggesting that patients avoid highly processed foods, eat plenty of healthy foods, and exercise regularly.
An acupuncturist can amplify the benefits of self-acupressure at home, according to Stein. He adds that acupuncture is more powerful than self-massage techniques.