A Brief Introduction to the Meridians of AcupunctureAcupuncturists use meridians to alter the health outcomes in their patients. These pathways are located throughout the body and connect the various organs and organ systems. In general, the meridians follow the course of major nerves that conduct electrical impulses throughout the body.

Acupuncture is based upon the locations and the effects of applying needles along these lines but it is difficult for the novice to comprehend what meridians actually are. Here is a brief introduction.

What are Meridians?

When a NYC chiropractor incorporates acupuncture into his or her practice, medical treatment includes both the bones and surrounding skeletal structures that form the basis of chiropractic care with the meridian channels originally defined in ancient Chinese medicine. These meridians may be divided into two separate types: the vertical channels and the horizontal branches.

The vertical channels pass through and connect the various organs while the horizontal channels are more localized. Combined, these meridians form a network-like system that allows the transfer of chi throughout the body.

Suppose a patient came to see a NYC chiropractor for back pain. During chiropractic treatment, a series of acupuncture treatments may be used to release energy along the meridians to allow the body to heal. The acupuncture points that affect distinct parts of the body can be defined as a meridian.

The Twelve Principal Meridians

In acupuncture, the meridians are linked to yin or yang organs as well as to the pericardium. Yin organs are structured without an interior cavity and include the liver, kidneys, and lungs. Yang organs, such as the stomach and intestines, do have a cavity within them. These meridians are located within the arms and the legs, with three yin and three yang meridians located in each.

The arm yin meridians are linked to the lung, heart, and pericardium while the arm yang meridians are most strongly connected with the small and large intestines. A third arm yang meridian is known as the triple burner and affects the metabolism of food throughout the body.

Leg meridians are also both yin and yang. The spleen, kidney, and liver meridians are connected with organs that have no interior cavity and are considered to be yin while the stomach, bladder, and gall bladder fall into the yang division.

Flow Along the Meridians

Energy flow along the meridians is not one way. It includes both inward and outward flow. There is flow between yin and yang as well as flow between the arm and leg energies. During a chiropractic session, an NYC chiropractor may choose to stimulate flow between the different meridians to allow damaged spinal muscles time to heal.

Keep in mind that energy flow along and between the meridians includes both blood and nerve conduction as well as changes in the body’s electrical fields. Explorations of the flow of chi took many generations of trial and error. By preventing blockages within this internal flow, the body is able to heal itself.

This is only a very basic introduction to the meridians that are used in acupuncture. In addition, there are eight more meridians as well as the more localized branches that occur throughout the body. Understanding the interconnectedness takes many years of study.