Pain due to Stagnation

Pain is a limiting factor in life. Many of us live with chronic pain, and it can interfere with our work, our relationships, and our pursuit of happiness. But there is help available.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), pain has many different causes. These causes are categorised into patterns according to TCM theory. These include Cold Attacking (contracted and stiff muscles, relieved by warmth), Deficiency Pain (chronic, aching, weakness, better for pressure), or Damp Pain (a feeling of heaviness, aching, with swelling), among others.

One common cause of Pain is Stagnation of Qi (Chi) and Blood. Our bodies are designed to move, flow, and change. They do not respond well to lack of movement and sluggishness. In TCM there is a saying; “Where there is free-flow, there is no pain. Where there is pain, there is no free-flow.”

When there is a lack of movement, for example a lack of exercise, or movement of Qi and Blood is impeded due to a trauma (bruising) or other factors such as the presence of a pathogen, a blockage will occur. We call this blockage Stagnation.

In cases of pain caused by Qi Stagnation, the nature of the pain will be localised, have a distending quality, and feel worse for pressure. Blood Stagnation is more of a sharp pain and feels as if it is ‘boring in’. There may be bruising present and it feels worse for pressure. Often Qi Stagnation and Blood Stagnation will be combined.

To relieve pain, increase mobility, ease tension, and speed healing this stagnation needs to be moved. Different techniques can be employed, depending on your pattern differentiation. Acupuncture, guasha (scraping), cupping, moxa, and massage are all extremely helpful and effective.

If you experience pain, and the symptoms of Qi and Blood Stagnation sound familiar to you, TCM can help. Conditions that respond extremely quickly to treatment include sciatica, lower back pain, frozen shoulder, RSI, old or recent sports injuries, and many others.

Helena – Journey Healthcare

Helena Nyssen
Journey Healthcare

Helena is a registered Chinese Medicine Practitioner, and Remedial Massage Therapist at Journey Healthcare in Leichhardt NSW. Find out more about Helena and becoming pain-free as you pursue your happiness. You can visit Journey Healthcare at or call on 0404 0505 13.