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Please visit my Services page for more details.
Absolutely not! Most people are used to hypodermic needles which are hollow to inject medicine or to withdraw blood. Acupuncture is surprisingly painless because the needles are hair-thin. I only use sterile, disposable, one-time use needles in my practice. You shouldn’t feel the insertion of a needle, but once it’s in place, the needle is stimulated and Qi is obtained. Qi can be described as a heavy sensation, warmth, or movement of energy at the point of insertion or along the energy channels. When the Qi is flowing, a feeling of deep relaxation will arise. Many people even fall asleep.
A typical visit to the acupuncturist involves an extensive evaluation of your symptoms. First you will be given a thorough medical history, where the entire body is taken into account, even the patient's lifestyle. In TCM, even symptoms that appear insignificant or unrelated to your chief complaint can help to the acupuncturist uncover a pattern, leading to a diagnosis. The tongue and pulses are also examined. They reflect the organs, meridians, and the state of Qi throughout the body. I primarily use Kiiko Style Acupuncture in my practice. This is a palpatory method is designed to provide instant feedback to both patient and practitioner. Palpation allows the practitioner to gain information through touch. Areas of palpation include the neck, spine, scars, and most importantly, the hara. The hara is not only the physical abdomen, but an energetic area as well. It reflects the root of the body’s energy, so releasing blocks within the hara allows us to move towards optimum health. When I palpate the hara, I can discriminate between point choices, locating the one that has the greatest healing potential for the patient.
It’s exactly what it sounds like. The key to health is proper energy flow throughout the body. Tight muscles can create a physical blockage, constricting blood, lymph, and Qi circulation. On occasion tight muscles can irritate nerves, causing pain and numbness. I will place one hand on the tight muscle, and the other on a trigger point. When the correct trigger point is chosen, the patient will immediately feel the muscle relax. That point is then needled to ensure a release. Muscle melting is very successful in aiding Qi to flow unimpeded and uninterrupted throughout the body to treat tight necks and shoulders.
Medical Qi Gong is one of the modalities of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi means life force energy and Gong means skill. Medical Qi Gong is the skillful practice of gathering, circulating, and applying energy for health maintenance, longevity, and disease prevention. It is an energetic medicine that helps to restore the harmony between body and spirit and is used to balance a patient’s energy, similar to acupuncture, only without needles. Rather than using needles, a Medical Qi Gong practitioner relies on their ability to direct Qi with the mind and hands, working in the energetic fields over the body. The practitioner can also touch the body to fill it with Qi directly. A Medical Qi Gong practitioner can feel Qi (energy), its density, texture, and emotional content. These qualities are then used to diagnose, regulate and replenish the Qi, and purge out impurities for medical benefit. Medical Qi Gong is also an exercise system, not unlike Tai Chi, that emphasizes soft, flowing motions with controlled breathing and visualization. There are different exercises for each organ and illness. Sometimes, the exercises can be given as homework and are prescribed like medicine, so that the patient can take control of their own health. When a Medical Qi Gong is combined with an acupuncture treatment, the healing results are absolutely amazing.
Acupuncture can be used solely as preventative medicine. Many come for regular visits to improve their general well-being, vitality and stamina. You will become sick less often and recover quickly from both illness and injury. Maintaining your health with acupuncture will help you to live longer, have a higher quality of life, and reduce the cost of your long-term health care.
Each patient’s health concerns and response to treatment is unique; the number of treatments are individualized. After your initial acupuncture session, it is best to begin with weekly one-hour treatments. Usually, it takes between 5 to 10 weekly appointments to see dramatic results. However, some respond in only one or two visits. Treatments will shift to every other week, or every three weeks, to a few times per year for a “tune up” (prevention and health maintenance). Generally, acute problems need less sessions, while chronic problems need more.
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