“From an emotional perspective the most characteristic and common signs of Liver-Qi Stagnation are mental depression, alternation of moods, irritability, ‘snapping’ easily and an intense feeling of frustration.”
“Typically, the emotional symptoms fluctuate a lot: the person goes through periods of depression when all the physical symptoms also appear, and periods when the depression is lifted and the physical symptoms disappear. This fluctuation is typical of Liver-Qi stagnation.” —G. Maciocia
- nervousness, irritability, easily short-tempered/angered
- blurred or unclear vision
- dry eyes
- coarse, brittle nails or hair
- sensitivity to heat, wind, noise, bright light
- numbness, tingling of limbs when asleep or inactive
- muscle cramps of pelvis, sides, hips, calves, feet
- tension in shoulders, neck, sacrum, hips, legs
- dizzy, queasy, flushed, headache from hunger, anger
From a Chinese medical perspective, the signs and symptoms above point towards Energetic Dysfunctions of the Liver. While there are many possible diagnoses that involve the flow of Liver-Qi, a major element to look for is a psycho-emotional problem. Such imbalances range from moodiness, or a general sense of “blah” with life, to full-blown propensity to anger or hypomanic/ manic behaviors.
Liver-Qi stagnation is by far the most frequent diagnosis seen in clinical practice. Its effect on our health is far-reaching and its symptomatology is wide:
- Pain, discomfort and distention on the side of the chest (and the breasts) and just below the rib cage always indicate Liver-Qi stagnation.
- Hiccups are due to Liver-Qi stagnant in the diaphragm.
- Sighing is a spontaneous way to release stagnant Qi in the chest.
- Nausea and belching are due to Liver-Qi invading the Stomach.
- Borborygmus (the loud noises coming from the middle abdomen during digestion) are due to stagnation of Liver-Qi in the intestines.