In the middle of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many people are in fear wondering if they got infected with the virus and some are struggling against it at home with no effective medicine available yet.
Even under these difficult situations, so many alternative therapists are tying to encourage people by introducing possibly effective ways of saving yourself by maximizing your own natural strength. What I would like to introduce you is, Seitai.
“Seitai” is a Japanese traditional therapy, and it is a kind of massage and exercise in a broad sense, not medical treatment. So it is not possible to cure any disease with Seitai. However, it has quite unique techniques and theories, because Seitai has accumulated collective clinical experiences for the goal of “heal diseases by bringing out the innate power of the person” since old times when there were no medical equipment or effective medicines.
As a Seitai practitioner, I think this traditional Seitai knowledge should be useful especially during this difficult time and decided to introduce some practical tequniques you can try at home. It would be more than happy if you find any good out of this article.
The article is structured as follows:
- Guidelines for medical consultation (medical and Seitai’s standard)
- Why the lungs get inflamed
- Seitai’s approach to pneumonia
- Steamed towel on the collarbone
- Fasten collarbones
- Convalescence of pneumonia
- Conclusion (to cope with new virus wave after wave)
1. Guidelines for medical consultation
Needless to say, follow the instructions on how to prevent infection and the standard of medical institution consultation provided by medical institutions in each country.
On that premise, I will write down how Seitai judges the possibility of pneumonia (and tuberculosis.)
Determine your health by „four beats per breath” measurement method
Even with a high fever, if your breathing rate corresponds to your pulse rate, you have a good chance of recovering with your self-healing ability, but if your breathing is shallow, you will be deprived of oxygen, which indicates your condition is becoming critical.
In a healthy condition, a person beats 4 times per breath. If it decreases to approximately 2 times or less, the person’s condition is considered as a state of emergency (SARS, pneumonia, tuberculosis, etc.).
The pulse at 3 times per breath suggests that you need to be cautious.
The pulse at more than 4 times is not considered as a problem.
Here’s how to measure it:
- Measure one’s breath for one minute
- Take one’s pulse for one minute
- Divide heart rate by respiratory rate
2. Why the lungs get inflamed
Inflammation is a biological defense reaction against abnormalities. In this case, against the new virus called SARS-Cov-2, your lungs may inflame to send many white blood cells, remove dead cells and grow new cells, as necessary.
Therefore, it is not desirable to force this inflammation to stop. There are some exceptions, however, where medical measures are taken to reduce this inflammation if immunity may cause an overreaction and destroy healthy lung cells (cytokine storm), resulting in acute respiratory distress.
As I mentioned, Seitai is not a medical treatment and medicine cannot be used. However, it has its own approach to deal with it by bringing out the patient’s “the power of breathing”.
3. Seitai’s approach to pneumonia
The pectoralis major plays an important role in the many muscles that are involved in breathing. And collarbone is hanging the pectoralis major like a curtain rail. The pectoralis major uses the collarbone as a support to help breathing, but as the strain on the lungs increases, it becomes increasingly fatigued and loses the resilience, unable to support breathing.
At this point, the pectoralis major gets thin and weak, and you feel the collarbone that hangs it stiff when you touch it due to the stiffness of the surrounding tissues (ligament, tendons).
In particular, if the joint near the throat called the sternoclavicular joint becomes rigid and cannot move, the throat is tightened and breathing cannot be performed, indicating you are in a dangerous condition.
Therefore, you need to relieve the collarbone, especially the sternoclavicular joint, and regain its own function to serve as a support for the pectorails major’s motion of expanding/contracting.
4. A steamed towel on collarbone
Collarbone is a very delicate part, and takes extra care even for professionals when they treat. So, here I will introduce the safest way for anyone, which is to put a steamed towel on the upper chest.
Steamed Towel Method
- Prepare one thick towel which is about 85 cm × 35 cm.
- Fold the towel in a size somewhat larger than the palm of the patient’s hand.
- Immerse in water and squeeze it leaving moisture to the extent that water does not drip.
- Heat that up. If you find it too hot, let it cool to the temperature to avoid a burn.
– Use a microwave … Heat up for 60 to 90 seconds.
– Use hot water … Immerce in hot water and squeeze with rubber gloves to prevent a burn (it is even safer with rubber gloves over cotton gloves.)
- Apply it to the upper chest. The temperature should be a bit higher than just comfortable, but lower than scalding.
- Warm up the same towel after it has cooled down (about 4 minutes)
- Lay it on the area again. Repeat it 3 – 5 times.
(After applying this method, you may cough harder temporarily, as a healing reaction. Please try not to suppress coughs.
Please strictly follow this instruction and do not use a hot pack or disposable warmer instead. Refer to this article for the particular reason of this.)
This rise and fall of the temperature induce the expansion and contraction of the muscles, which in turn induces the expansion and contraction of the lungs. Normally, this should help breathing easier. If this gives you pain, simply stop it.
5. Fasten collarbones
A bit more difficult technique is, to have a helper to fasten the collarbones with both hands to loosen the area around the sternoclavicular joint.
On the image above, „L(blue)” represents the left hand and „R(light blue)” the right hand. Firstly, put your right hand on the patient’s upper chest and then fasten it tightly with the left hand.
The collarbones of the patient with difficult respiration have gotten stiffer, but tightening them will make the breathing easier (this may sound strange, but haven’t you ever fastened your wrist when you feel pain on it after playing tennis or other sports? Fastening joint would relieve it, in principle.)
There is no rule for how long you should fasten it, but keep it about 30 seconds, and slowly release your hands when the patient’s breathing becomes slightly calm.
Ensure that the helper keeps the balance between the right side and left side of the patient’s body and does not wobble.
6. Convalescence of pneumonia
In Seitai, we say “Do not use the arms (don’t carry heavy things) for 1 year after pneumonia.”
The biceps connect to the shoulder joint, which connects to the collarbone and plays an important role in supporting the chest. Therefore, using arms before a full recovery of lungs will lower the ribs, which compresses the lungs inside and hinders the recovery of the lungs, or equivalently vitality of the whole body.
For your information, your palm skin tells a lot about the recovery of lungs since palm is closely related to lung. You may notice that the skin of the palms flakes off a while after pneumonia. This is called “molting of lungs”, a sign of recovery.
At this moment, the novel coronavirus is all over the world. Also, we have seen the outbreak of SARS, MARS or Spanish flu in the past. Infectious diseases have always attacked humanity and will have continued in the future. While it is undoubtedly crucial to prevent and/or delay the transmission through public health and treat it with sophisticated medicine, it is equally important “to enhance the vitality of individuals”.
The treatments described in this article have been practiced for respiratory symptoms such as ordinary pneumonia, asthma, etc. Therefore, it may be applicable to COVID-19, too. I hope the wisdom of Seitai helps people in the world.
If you have any questions or any experiences to share regarding this article, please contact me.