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Winter Acupuncture: Governing Vessel 14

Governing Vessel 14 is called The Great Hammer. This point is located below C-7, the seventh cervical vertebrae below the head, on the spine. Traditionally the vertebrae were referred to as hammers because of their resemblance to a hammer. Governing Vessel-14 is a primary acupuncture point and used in many acupuncture treatment plans for a variety of reasons. In Traditional Chinese Medicine there are six types of pathogenic factors that can invade the body.  These six factors, called the six evils, or excesses, in Traditional Chinese Medicine terminology, are as follows: wind, cold, heat, dryness, dampness and summer heat. Governing Vessel 14 is good at expelling pathogens

in the body including invasions of wind and cold, as well as summer heat. Wind cold can enter the body through the area between Governing Vessel 14 and Bladder 12. This is why it is important to wear a scarf in the winter. You want to protect your body from an invasion of wind cold. If you do become afflicted you may get a cold, fever, flu and experience coughing. In the summer, excess heat can cause high fevers and GV 14 is effective in reducing them. GV 14 can also be needled to keep the wei qi (the protective qi, akin to the immune system) strong, thus protecting the body from external pathogens.

Due to its location on the neck, GV-14 can be used for neck pain or stiff neck, pain along the spine, headaches, toothache and sore throats. As you can see, Governing Vessel 14 is not only a great point in general, but a critical point during the winter months when cold and flu season are upon us and the threat of evil wind and cold is all around us.

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