Pain Management East & West

Updated: Apr 10

What might be the cause of your pain? Pain is a signal in your nervous system that something may be wrong. As a Shiatsu Functional Therapist I take both a western and eastern approach to pain management.


According to Western Medicine, pain theory relies on nerves, receptors and a cascade of biomarkers. But Chinese Medicine Theory perceives pain from injury for instance as “blood stagnation”. In Chinese Medicine and Shiatsu theory, whenever there is blockage in the body, or whenever the blood, oxygen and physiological fluids of the body are not moving properly or even stop, there is pain.


“When there is free flow of Qi (or Ki), there is no pain”

There are two types of pain according to Western Medical practitioners: acute and chronic. Acute pain comes on suddenly, because of a disease, injury, or inflammation. It can often be diagnosed and treated. It usually goes away, but it can turn into chronic pain, which lasts for a long time, and can cause severe ongoing problems.


Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has unique non interventionist advantages in the treatment of pain. Through targeting acupressure points and balancing the major energy centres of the body (called tan tien or hara) and clearing and healing meridians, a balance of ki/ qi and blood, relieve the pain caused by ki/qi stagnation and blood stasis as well as any meridian impassability.

For example TCM practitioners understand that all Liver blood deficiency cannot nourish the muscles, tendons or ligaments. Muscle cramp problems are due to liver problems, because the liver according to 5 Element Theory cleans and heals muscles and tendons. Shiatsu acupressure takes its cue from Traditional Chinese Medicine, and instead of acupuncture needles, I use my fingers, hands, elbows, knees to palpate and clear the body of all disharmony, pain and sickness.


Neuropathic pain is pain caused by damage or disease affecting the somatosensory nervous system. It can be shooting or burning pain. Sometimes it is unrelenting and severe, and sometimes it comes and goes. It often is the result of nerve damage or a malfunctioning nervous system and can therefore become chronic. Treat this pain as soon as possible, a multidisciplinary approach that combines therapies, including Shiatsu acupressure, can be a very effective way to provide relief from neuropathic pain.


Tight muscles are so often ignored by conventional medical professions. There are medical specialties for every organ system of the body, but there is no “muscle doctor.” Perhaps the importance of tight musculature is overlooked because it does not show on x-rays, other radiographic imaging, or in laboratory results. For this reason, manual massage therapists who are highly trained in muscle palpation assessment skills and soft tissue treatment techniques have the opportunity to help. Deep Tissue and Shiatsu both assist with this pain.


Neuralgia is a stabbing, burning, and often severe pain due to an irritated or damaged nerve. The nerve may be anywhere in the body, and the damage may be caused by several things, including: aging. diseases such as diabetes or multiple sclerosis. an infection, such as shingles.

Remedial & Swedish Massage are the high choice for this type of pain.


Shiatsu Massage returns your body mind to homeostasis. Returning your body to homeostasis returns your metabolism to high function. Metabolism is really all the chemical processes in your body that keep you alive: converting food and drinks into energy, repairing cells, breathing, and keeping your organs functioning! This is significant healing for stress disorders!

Heart Pain too may be neuralgic pain. Swedish Massage & Shiatsu Meridian Massage assist this pain. See your Doctor at once that you notice any heart pain?


If you live near or in Hobart Tasmania, Book an appointment with Ruth


Omalgia Pain in the shoulder, can be neuralgic, cardiovascular, tendon, digestive or muscular cause. Shiatsu can assist this pain amazingly well.

Elbow Pain is usually neuralgic, digestive, cardiovascular and or muscular. Shiatsu is highly effective for digestive, cardiovascular and muscular pain. Swedish massage can resolve almost all neuralgic pain.


Spasm Pain Cycle. Overuse of a muscle fatigues it. Overuse also increases its level of tension. This increases the muscle’s pulling force on its tendons and bony attachments, irritating these structures and causing pain. In response to this pain, the nervous system signals the muscle to contract, which creates increased tightness of the entire muscle. Foot Reflexology, Deep Tissue, Swedish massage all assist with this type of pain.


Knee Pain can be in this Spasm Pain Cycle and the Omalgia as it can relate to digestion, tendon, muscular imbalances aswell as fatigue.


2 views0 comments