FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a comprehensive medical system that has been used in the East for thousands of years to diagnose and treat illness, manage acute and chronic disorders, alleviate pain and promote health through prevention and maintenance.

Acupuncture is just one branch of Chinese Medicine, that also incorporates Herbal Medicine, Dietary and Lifestyle Guidance, Qigong movement and mindfulness to support balance and optimum health in the body and mind.

Regular Acupuncture treatment can help to enhance optimal organ function, stimulate detoxification, increase energy and mental clarity, reduce inflammation and promote blood circulation.

What happens in an Acupuncture treatment?

In an Acupuncture treatment, stainless steel, single-use disposable needles, similar in width to a human hair, are inserted to just beneath the skin’s surface in order to direct and stimulate the body’s electromagnetic system at specific points.  This energetic matrix is comprised of 14 main channels with about 400 Acupuncture points along these channels, which form the transportation pathways for energy throughout the body.

The channels can be compared to ocean currents, where the currents are pathways within the ocean along which the water moves with particular force and direction.  The network formed by ocean currents determines the circulation of water throughout our planet. Movement within this network effects and directs the weather, and therefore all life on this planet, and even the shape of the landscape itself.

Acupuncture channels are pathways within your body where your life-force energy, known as Qi (pronounced chee and akin to blood and lymph), moves in predictable ways as your body carries out its daily functions.  Similar to how currents affect the whole ocean as well as weather and all life on earth, the movement of energy within the channels of the body affect how your organs function, your overall health, and even your mental and emotional state.

How does Acupuncture work?

Due to a myriad of influential factors including the habits you keep, your dietary and lifestyle choices, genetic predispositions, and environmental toxicity (the list could go on) the available energy in your body can become deficient, stuck or build up excessively in certain areas.  Any of these conditions is the beginning of the disease, and homeostasis, the body’s intelligence to restore balance, becomes disrupted.  Acupuncture treatments work with the body’s infinite wisdom and intelligence to stimulate its own natural healing capacity, strength, and balance.

In biomedical terms, one of the ways Acupuncture works is by creating a micro-injury, a small disturbance that gets your body’s attention and sends increased blood circulation, bringing fresh oxygen and nutrients to speed up healing and clear out stagnation or inflammation.  

Acupuncture also stimulates the release of chemical messengers such as endorphins, which boost your mood and have been shown to be nearly a thousand times stronger than morphine at controlling pain, and cortisol, which reduces inflammation in the body.  Stimulating release of these chemicals along major energy pathways can have wide-reaching benefits for healing.

What is the diagnostic process?

Chinese Medicine has been using an intricate form of diagnosis for thousands of years, long before X-rays and blood tests were conceived. Reading the symptoms of the body were the only way to detect illness and imbalance, and a comprehensive system of diagnosis developed, based on a combination of:

Patient observation
Inquiry about symptoms (that can range from digestion/sleep/menstrual cycles)
Background Factors
Lifestyle & Emotions
Palpation: radial pulse, the abdomen, tender points on the body

Symptoms can be likened to the tip of a tree branch.  My work is to follow the branch to the trunk and down to the root, in order to discover and treat the underlying cause (root), as well as the manifesting symptom (branch). Treating the underlying energetic blocks beneath the surface symptoms is a core principle of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

How often should I get Acupuncture?

Imagine your body is a car.  Some people drive it as long as they can until something major breaks and the car breaks down, and then they spend a fortune to fix what was broken.  Another type of person performs regular maintenance, regularly checking the oil and the tires and taking it to a mechanic as soon as anything seems to be off. This type of person tends to have fewer blowouts and generally has a smoother experience with their car.

The philosophy of Eastern medicine is similar to the second type of person.  Acupuncture can be very powerful in treating severe, chronic conditions, especially as an adjunctive therapy to biomedical approaches. It shines in its element, however, as a complete system for preventative health.

We are learning that 80% of all illness is preventable, and so staying healthy by using diet, exercise and supporting the body with balancing modalities can prevent most long-term illness. You have one body for as long as you live, and regular Acupuncture can help you maintain optimum health and vitality throughout your life.

Let’s work together to transform your health concerns —I’d love to be part of your journey to discovering your most radiant, happy & healthiest self.

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