Jumpiness according to Chinese Medicine

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Jumpiness can be the consequence of several so-called “patterns of disharmony” in Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted, leading to symptoms or signs that something is wrong (like jumpiness here). It is similar to the concept of disease in Western Medicine but not quite: a Western disease can often be explained by several Chinese patterns and vice-versa.

A pattern often manifests itself in a combination of symptoms that, at first glance, do not seem necessarily related to each others. For instance here jumpiness is often associated with dizziness, blurred vision and floaters in eyes in the pattern “Liver Qi Deficiency”. As you will see below, we have in record five patterns that can cause jumpiness.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of jumpiness we’ve identified five herbal formulas that may help treat patterns behind the symptom.

We’ve also selected below the five medicinal herbs that we think are most likely to help treat jumpiness.

The five "patterns of disharmony" that can cause jumpiness

In Chinese Medicine jumpiness is a symptom for 5 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

The Liver is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Liver in Chinese Medicine

Liver Qi Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Weak (Ruo)

In addition to jumpiness, other symptoms associated with Liver Qi Deficiency include dizziness, blurred vision and floaters in eyes.

Liver Qi Deficiency is often treated with Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang, a herbal formula made of 10 herbs (including Milkvetch Roots - Huang Qi - as a key herb). Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that tonify qi", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Tonifies Qi of the Spleen and Stomach (Middle Burner)".

Read more about Liver Qi Deficiency here

The Heart is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Heart in Chinese Medicine

Heart Blood Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Choppy (Se), Fine (Xi)

Tongue color: Pale

Tongue shape: Thin

Heart Blood Deficiency hurts the Mind (神 Shen) and it causes insomnia, dream-disturbed sleep, anxiety, poor memory, dizziness and tendency to be scared. It can be caused by Deficient Spleen Qi that fails to produce Blood, long-term anxiety and worry, a severe blood loss and excessive workload.

In addition to jumpiness, other symptoms associated with Heart Blood Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

From a Western Medicine standpoint Heart Blood Deficiency is associated with health issues such as Postpartum Depression.

Heart Blood Deficiency is often treated with Si Wu Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Prepared Rehmannia - Shu Di huang - as a key herb). Si Wu Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that tonify blood", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Restores and nourishes Blood".

Read more about Heart Blood Deficiency here

The Spleen is a so-called "Zang" Organ. Learn more about the Spleen in Chinese Medicine

Spleen and Heart Blood Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Choppy (Se), Fine (Xi)

In addition to jumpiness, other symptoms associated with Spleen and Heart Blood Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

Spleen and Heart Blood Deficiency is often treated with Gui Pi Tang, a herbal formula made of 12 herbs (including Ginseng - Ren Shen - as a key herb). Gui Pi Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that tonify qi and blood", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Tonifies and nourish Qi and Blood".

Read more about Spleen and Heart Blood Deficiency here

The Gallbladder is a so-called "Fu" Organ. Learn more about the Gallbladder in Chinese Medicine

Gallbladder Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Weak (Ruo)

More than a ‘pattern’, this is really the description of a certain character or personality. The key feature of this ‘pattern’ is the character of the person: that is, their lack of courage, timidity and lack of initiative.

In addition to jumpiness, other symptoms associated with Gallbladder Deficiency include dizziness, blurred vision and floaters in eyes.

Gallbladder Deficiency is often treated with Wen Dan Tang, a herbal formula made of 8 herbs (including Crow-Dipper Rhizomes - Ban Xia - as a key herb). Wen Dan Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that dry dampness and transform phlegm", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Clears Phlegm".

Read more about Gallbladder Deficiency here

Prepared Rehmannia (Shu Di huang) is the king ingredient for Liu Wei Di Huang Wan, a formula used for Yin Deficiency

Yin Deficiency

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Empty (Xu)

Tongue coating: Thin white coating

Tongue color: Red

In the case of Yin Deficiency, the body is short in the cooling, moistening and nurturing aspects. This leads to Heat and Dryness accompanied by weakness and lack of strength and resistance. Yin becomes Deficient by over-working, lack of sleep, over-exercising, overindulgence in sex, long-term chronic diseases, internal injury due to the seven emotions, and the over-eating of dry and hot-natured foods.

In addition to jumpiness, other symptoms associated with Yin Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

Yin Deficiency is often treated with Liu Wei Di Huang Wan, a herbal formula made of 6 herbs (including Prepared Rehmannia - Shu Di huang - as a key herb). Liu Wei Di Huang Wan belongs to the category of "formulas that nourish yin and tonify", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Nutritive tonic for the Liver and Kidney Yin Essence (nourishes the parasympathetic nervous system)".

Read more about Yin Deficiency here

Five herbal formulas that might help with jumpiness

Xiao Yao San

Source date: 1107 AD

Number of ingredients: 6 herbs

Key actions: Harmonizes the function of Liver and Spleen. Relieves Liver Qi stagnation. Nourishes the Blood.

Why might Xiao Yao San help with jumpiness?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Liver Qi Deficiency' of which jumpiness is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Liver Qi Deficiency include dizziness, blurred vision and floaters in eyes.

Read more about Xiao Yao San here

Si Wu Tang

Source date: 846 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Restores and nourishes Blood. Stimulates Blood circulation.

Why might Si Wu Tang help with jumpiness?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Heart Blood Deficiency' of which jumpiness is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Heart Blood Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

Read more about Si Wu Tang here

Gui Pi Tang

Source date: 1529 AD

Number of ingredients: 12 herbs

Key actions: Tonifies and nourish Qi and Blood. Tonifies Heart and Spleen.

Why might Gui Pi Tang help with jumpiness?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Spleen and Heart Blood Deficiency' of which jumpiness is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Spleen And Heart Blood Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

Read more about Gui Pi Tang here

Wen Dan Tang

Source date: 1174 AD

Number of ingredients: 8 herbs

Key actions: Clears Phlegm. Clears Gallbladder. Regulates Qi. Harmonizes the Stomach.

Why might Wen Dan Tang help with jumpiness?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Gallbladder Deficiency' of which jumpiness is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Gallbladder Deficiency include dizziness, blurred vision and floaters in eyes.

Read more about Wen Dan Tang here

Liu Wei Di Huang Wan

Source date: 1119 AD

Number of ingredients: 6 herbs

Key actions: Nutritive tonic for the Liver and Kidney Yin Essence (nourishes the parasympathetic nervous system).

Why might Liu Wei Di Huang Wan help with jumpiness?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Yin Deficiency' of which jumpiness is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Yin Deficiency include dizziness, insomnia and poor memory.

Read more about Liu Wei Di Huang Wan here

Acupuncture points used for jumpiness

The five Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat jumpiness

Why might Dong Quai (Dang Gui) help with jumpiness?

Because Dong Quai is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat jumpiness as a symptom, like Sheng Yu Tang or Xiao Yao San for instance.

Dong Quai is a Warm herb that tastes Pungent and Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Liver and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Blood. Lubricates the Intestines. Relieve constipation. Promotes circulation and dispels Bi Pain. Reduce Dysmenorrhea and help with irregular menstruation.

Read more about Dong Quai here

Why might Ginseng (Ren Shen) help with jumpiness?

Because Ginseng is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat jumpiness as a symptom, like Gui Pi Tang or Sheng Yu Tang for instance.

Ginseng is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Lung and the Spleen.

Its main actions are: Very strongly tonifies the Qi. Tonifies the Lungs and Spleen. Assists the body in the secretion of Fluids and stops thirst. Strengthens the Heart and calms the Shen (mind/spirit).

Read more about Ginseng here

Why might Liquorice (Gan Cao) help with jumpiness?

Because Liquorice is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat jumpiness as a symptom, like Gui Pi Tang or Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang for instance.

Liquorice is a Neutral herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Heart, the Lung, the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Basal Qi and nourishes the Spleen Qi. Clears Heat and dispels toxicity. Moistens the Lungsexpel phlegm and stop coughing. Relieves spasms and alleviates pain. Harmonizes and moderates the effects of other herbs.

Read more about Liquorice here

Why might Jujube Date (Da Zao) help with jumpiness?

Because Jujube Date is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat jumpiness as a symptom, like Wen Dan Tang or Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang for instance.

Jujube Dates is a Warm herb that tastes Sweet. It targets the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Spleen and Stomach Qi. Tonifies the Blood. Calms the Shen (spirit). Moderates the actions of other herbs in formula.

Read more about Jujube Dates here

Why might Atractylodes Rhizome (Bai Zhu) help with jumpiness?

Because Atractylodes Rhizome is an ingredient in several formulas indicated to treat jumpiness as a symptom, like Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang or Gui Pi Tang for instance.

Atractylodes Rhizomes is a Warm herb that tastes Bitter and Sweet. It targets the Spleen and the Stomach.

Its main actions are: Tonifies the Spleen Qi. Fortifies the Spleen Yang and dispels Damp through urination. Tonifies Qi and stops sweating. Calms restless fetus when due to Deficiency of Spleen Qi.

Read more about Atractylodes Rhizomes here