Acupuncture is the practice of sterilized filiform disposable needles inserted into the body at specific points on the meridians to balance and regulate the flow of blood and Qi according to traditional Chinese medicine principles and theories.
What is Traditional Chinese medicine?
Traditional Chinese medicine evolved over thousands of years, and is based on Daoist philosophy. The main premise of Daoist philosophy is that we live in a universe where everything is connected, and that an individual’s body is a microcosm of larger surroundings within the universe. What happens to one part of the body affects every other part of the body. Consider the metaphor of a drop of water creating concentric circles, and even ripples to the furthest shore. From this perspective, the mind, body and emotions cannot be separate from one another; they are portions of an energetic system. This energy is called Qi, the life force that protects the body from illness and disease as well as animates the body. Qi flows throughout the body via meridians, or energy pathways. In TCM treatments, acupuncture and other treatments are used to adjust and maintain balance of blood and Qi.
How can I prepare for my first visit?
You will be asked to fill out an intake and waiver form which will take about twenty minutes, so please come early to your first appointment to do this. It’s advisable to have had something to eat around an houror two before your treatment, and also to plan to have a snack or meal sometime after your treatment as well. Drinking coffee or other stimulating beverages before coming for a treatment isn’t recommended.
What can I expect the first visit?
During your treatment past life history, current symptoms and concerns will be discussed in a relaxed and supportive environment. Your practitioner will develop a personalized treatment plan towards optimal health and wellness using acupuncture and other traditional Chinese medicine treatments.
How many treatments are needed?
The course of treatments depends upon the imbalance at hand. Acute issues can be cleared up quickly if treated soon, as chronic issues can take more commitment. With acupuncture, consistent treatments create consistent results.
Are there any side effects?
People react differently to acupuncture; some people feel energized, and some feel deeply relaxed, others feel giddy. No matter what the reaction is, the relaxing effects of the treatment can continue thoughout the day, and so it’s advisable to rest or at least take a gentler approach to the remainder of the day, staying hydrated. Patients that are strongly affected by acupuncture are advised to make safe arrangements to get home.
Is Acupuncture safe during pregnancy?
TCM treatments are gentle and safe and for pregnant women. Ailments in all three trimesters can be addressed.
Acupuncture can help with:
- Morning Sickness
- Threatened Miscarriage
- Exhaustion & Anxiety
- Heartburn & Constipation
- Sciatica, Pelvic & Hip Pain
- Urinary Tract Infection
- Breech Babies & Malpresentation
- Pre Birth Acupuncture (Cervical Ripening)
Breech Babies & Malpresentation Acupuncture:
Chinese medicine has treated breech and malpresented babies for centuries using acupuncture and moxibustion. The ideal timing to treat breech and other malpresentations would be between 30 to 34 weeks.
Pre Birth Acupuncture (Cervical Ripening):
Cervical Ripening, or pre-birth acupuncture, is weekly treatments that prepare a woman for their birthing process. Weekly sessions can begin from around 36 or 37 weeks to the start of labour, with an increase in frequency of treatments with approaching due/overdue dates.
Can children receive Acupuncture?
Pediatric Chinese medicine uses other traditional treatments to treat children such as lifestyle and diet, cupping, gua sha, and tui na in addition to acupuncture.
Children respond well to acupuncture, as they have a more ‘clean slate’ of a health foundation to work with, as they don’t have the life length and health history that adults possess. They are also full of Qi, so the needles do not need to be retained. A simple insertion and withdrawal is the most needling that children under age 10 require. For children under 5, the most effective treatment is tui na, a traditional Chinese massage therapy.
What is Cupping?
Cupping is an ancient therapy used in many cultures around the world throughout history. A cup is attached to the body by using suction, opening the pores on the body and invigorating the flow of Qi and blood, therefore stimulating energy and circulation.
Cupping creates an outlet for toxins to exit the body by pulling latent impurities into the connective tissue and fascia below the skin so that the lymph system can flush it out. This helps to break down congestion and obstruction in the body in the form of toxins such as excess fluid and accumulated debris.
By relieving the stagnation and increasing blood flow to undernourished skin and muscles, the flow of Qi in the body can be balanced and realigned.
Some Benefits of Cupping are:
- Sore Muscles
- Common Colds and Respiratory Issues
- Joint & Muscle Pain
- Rheumatic Diseases
- Circulation and Detoxification
With proper lifestyle adjustments, including diet and exercise, a series of cupping treatments can greatly affect cellulite, both smoothing and tightening the skin. Some people see a smoothing of the skin in as little as one treatment, but generally after a treatment strategy has been created, around the 3rd or 4th session results are usually noticed. Results may vary.
What is Gua Sha?
Gua Sha is a scraping technique using a round edged instrument which helps to move and raise stagnation in subcutaneous tissue to the skin surface. The action mimics sweating and creates redness and bruising that fades within a weeks’ time. Similar to cupping, gua sha allows congestion and obstruction to exit the body naturally and effectively.
Some Benefits of Gua Sha are:
- Acute and Chronic Pain
- Strains & Sprains
- Muscle Spasms
- Common Cold and Flu
- Asthma & Bronchitis
- Post Work Out Muscle Soreness
What is Moxabustion?
Moxibustion is a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves the burning of mugwort, a small, spongy herb, to facilitate healing. The purpose of moxibustion, as with most forms of traditional Chinese medicine, is to strengthen the blood, stimulate the flow of Qi, and maintain general health.
What is TCM Diet Therapy?
TCM dietary therapy considers foods for their five flavors, five energies, movements, the common actions of foods (e.g., to lubricate dryness, soften hardness, or nourish blood), and organic actions (the specific internal organs on which certain foods can act).
According to TCM a balanced diet means two things. The first is that one should eat a variety of whole foods in order to benefit from all the flavors, energies, and organic actions a varied diet offers. The second is that foods are selected according to one’s particular needs and physical constitution. A prescribed diet can be used not only for treating disease, but also for maintaining a person’s good health.
What is Tui Na?
Tui Na is a form of Chinese massage meant to invigorate Qi and Blood in the body. Techniques used during Tui Na are pressing, rubbing, kneading, and pinching to restore balance, and promote structural and locomotive health increasing mobility and range of motion in the body.
Tui Na is helpful for:
- stiffness and soreness
- joint and soft tissue problems
- musculoskeletal disorders
- acute and chronic pain
- frozen shoulder
Pediatric Tui Na is helpful for:
Pediatric Tui Na can be used on children up to age 12, however its effect is most pronounced in children under age 5.
Our acupuncturist: Leonie Bedet