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LIV 3-Taichong acupoint

LIV 3 – Chinese name: TAICHONG


On the dorsum of the foot in a depression distal to the junctions of the 1st and 2nd metatarsal bones.


Temporary headache Migraine. Muscle tension. Muscle cramps(is spasmolytic). Dysfunctions of the digestive system. Gynecological and urogenital diseases. Psychosomatic symptoms associated with tension and restlessness. Enuresis. Trigeminal neuralgia. Vaginal discharge.

Adverse Events

Caution: pregnancy.



LIV 3, also known as TAICHONG, is a vital acupuncture point located on the liver meridian. Renowned for its effectiveness in ensuring the smooth flow of liver Qi and addressing a myriad of health concerns, especially those related to stress and emotional imbalances, LIV 3 plays a crucial role in traditional Chinese medicine. This article provides an in-depth look at LIV 3, covering its historical background, health benefits, proper usage, and important considerations for its stimulation.

History and Significance of LIV 3

LIV 3, or TAICHONG, has a profound historical significance in acupuncture treatments. Situated on the liver meridian, this point is particularly recognized for its capacity to move liver Qi efficiently, making it an essential point for dealing with emotional upheavals and ensuring the smooth functioning of bodily processes influenced by the liver.

Historically, LIV 3 has been used to alleviate liver Qi stagnation, which is often associated with stress, anger, and frustration. The liver meridian’s association with the wood element and its role in governing the dispersal of Qi and blood throughout the body make LIV 3 an indispensable point for fostering emotional release and systemic harmony.

Health Benefits of Stimulating LIV 3

Stimulating LIV 3 can yield a wide range of health benefits, particularly concerning emotional balance and liver functionality:

  1. Stress and Emotional Well-being: LIV 3 is renowned for its ability to alleviate stress, anxiety, and irritability, promoting emotional well-being.
  2. Menstrual Relief: This point is often employed to ease menstrual discomfort and regulate the menstrual cycle.
  3. Headache and Dizziness: LIV 3 can be effective in treating headaches and dizziness, especially those related to liver Qi stagnation.
  4. Digestive Health: By ensuring the smooth flow of liver Qi, LIV 3 supports digestive health and can help alleviate conditions like bloating and indigestion.
  5. Detoxification: LIV 3 supports the liver’s detoxification processes, aiding in the elimination of toxins from the body.

When to Use LIV 3

Understanding when to use LIV 3 is vital for effective treatment. This point is particularly beneficial in the following scenarios:

  • Emotional Distress: LIV 3 is a go-to point for alleviating stress, anger, or frustration, helping to restore emotional balance.
  • Menstrual Issues: Women experiencing menstrual pain or irregularities may find relief through LIV 3 stimulation.
  • Liver-Related Ailments: LIV 3 can be an essential part of the treatment plan for individuals dealing with liver diseases or discomforts.
  • Digestive Complaints: For digestive issues related to liver Qi stagnation, stimulating LIV 3 can be beneficial.

When Not to Use LIV 3

While LIV 3 offers numerous benefits, there are specific situations where its stimulation might not be recommended:

  • Pregnancy: Pregnant women should avoid stimulating LIV 3 as it might induce labor or cause other complications.
  • Severe Health Conditions: Individuals with serious health issues should consult a healthcare professional before engaging in any acupuncture treatment.

Do’s and Don’ts of LIV 3 Stimulation

To ensure safety and effectiveness, adhere to the following guidelines when using LIV 3:


  • Consult a Professional: Always seek guidance from a certified acupuncturist before attempting to stimulate LIV 3.
  • Be Gentle: Apply gentle pressure when stimulating LIV 3 to activate the point without causing discomfort.
  • Combine with Other Treatments: Consider incorporating LIV 3 into a comprehensive treatment plan for a holistic approach.


  • Don’t Self-Diagnose: Avoid using LIV 3 based on self-diagnosis. Proper diagnosis and treatment planning by a professional are crucial.
  • Don’t Ignore Pain: If stimulating LIV 3 causes discomfort, cease the stimulation immediately and seek professional advice.
  • Don’t Overstimulate: Overstimulating LIV 3 can lead to adverse effects. Adhere to the recommended treatment duration and frequency.

LIV 3 or TAICHONG is a powerful acupuncture point with a rich history and a broad spectrum of health benefits, especially in terms of managing liver function and emotional health. While it can be an effective tool in maintaining balance and well-being, approaching its use with caution and under professional guidance is essential. With the right approach, the stimulation of LIV 3 can be a valuable addition to one’s healthcare regimen.

For further information and a more detailed understanding of LIV 3 – TAICHONG, you can visit American Academy of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.

Meridian Points Commonly Paired with LIV 3

In acupuncture, treating a specific point is often more effective when complemented by other points within the meridian system. LIV 3, due to its significant role in the liver meridian, is frequently paired with other points to maximize its benefits and address a broader range of symptoms or health concerns.

LIV 2 (Xingjian) – Moving Between

LIV 2, located near LIV 3 between the toes, is often used together with LIV 3 to intensively move liver Qi and address heat-related issues, creating a powerful combination for dealing with emotional stress and liver-related ailments.

SP 6 (Sanyinjiao) – Three Yin Intersection

SP 6, located on the inner leg above the ankle, is a versatile point that addresses issues related to the liver, spleen, and kidney meridians. Pairing LIV 3 with SP 6 can offer comprehensive benefits, especially in treatments aimed at emotional well-being and women’s health concerns.

GB 34 (Yanglingquan) – Yang Mound Spring

GB 34, part of the gallbladder meridian and located below the knee, is known for its ability to spread liver Qi and alleviate tension. When used in conjunction with LIV 3, it can enhance liver function, promote emotional release, and ensure a smooth Qi flow throughout the body.

Incorporating LIV 3 into a holistic treatment approach, especially when paired with these complementary points, can lead to a more comprehensive and effective healing process. It’s important to seek guidance from a qualified practitioner who can tailor the treatment to individual needs and ensure the best possible outcomes.