Thousands of years ago, Chinese Medicine began with shamanistic roots where a man (or woman, rarely but sometimes) would dance in front of a fire with a spear to scare “evils” out of the body and thereby heal.
Over millennia the evils were defined, the dance and spear became a precise method of pattern diagnosis with needle insertion, and Acupuncture as we know it today came to be.
What many people don’t know, is that illness is STILL defined in terms of “evils” in modern Chinese medicine today. The evils we refer to are internal and external factors that can occur separately or together to create various patterns of illness. They are:
They can occur at different energetic levels, in different organs, and in combination with different constitutional factors (Yin, Yang, Qi, Blood) to further complicate things. Identifying evils - also called “Evil Pathogenic Invaders” or EPI’s for short - and constitutional factors allows Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine to get to the root of illness and create long term healing.
Stress and Inflammation - Big Brother Evil
In Springtime, Wind is key because it is also knows as the “Big Brother Evil
that can pick up and carry other evils into the body. The Liver is also especially sensitive to wind externally, and can generate wind and heat internally when out of balance.
Something else the Liver is sensitive to? STRESS, and stress - we know - contributes to inflammation in the body which can be defined as heat and can create internal wind when unchecked from an energetic perspective.
By this energetic mechanism, stress can cause all sorts of symptoms, such as
to name a few. Any of those things sound familiar?
In this way, stress and inflammation are the root of many illnesses and keeping stress and inflammation managed and in check is a primary focus and concern in Acupuncture treatment, especially in Spring - the season of the Wood Element and the Liver specifically.
Finding Ways to Manage Stress
If you can only choose one health focused activity this Spring, I highly recommend you focus on stress management. The sooner you learn to manage stress, the more of the bodily evils above you will avoid and the healthier you will be long term.
Also realize that stress is something all of us encounter - we can’t avoid it, its part of human life. The important things are to:
Tips for Stress Management
Everyone has to find their own combination of what works for them around managing stress to a degree, but I can share some tips from professional experience that are proven methods for success. I encourage you to explore the options below and experiment with different combinations until you find the most potent stress and inflammation managing recipe for you:
Spring is in the air - as the fragrant Daphne at my front door reminds me every day! Tomorrow, March 20th, marks the official first day of Spring 2014. Can you believe its here already? Spring is the Wood Element season in Chinese Medicine; a time for growth, change, detox, renewal and celebration of creative endeavors. For our health, Spring marks the beginning of allergy season, and the beginning of body taxing Spring cleaning projects, gardening and renewed efforts to get out and get fit as the weather warms up.
The result? A number of Spring ailments such as:
If you’re suffering from any of the symptoms above or getting ready for a Spring project requiring some elbow grease, consider including Acupuncture in your health regime in the coming months both to treat and avoid common Spring ailments. Chinese Medicine is a natural medicine which is tied to the seasons - treatments in the Spring are actually different from treatments in the Fall, Winter and Summer specifically to help the body handle the environmental and energetic changes associated with the season. Acupuncture can make you healthier this Spring by:
Spring Health Tips
As the Wood Element season, Spring is also a critical time for Liver and Gallbladder health in Chinese Medicine because the Liver and Gallbladder are considered Wood element organs. That means Spring is the perfect time to detoxify the body and focus on Liver health. Also critical to Liver health? Stress and Stress management, because stress affects the energy of the Liver first and foremost.
So here are some tips to help you manage the change of seasons and support the Liver and Gallbladder this Spring:
If you’re interested in getting some help managing stress, aches, pains, allergies or just preparing the body for the change of seasons, please come in for a free consultation or appointment. You can book online anytime! Also, check out my pinterest Healthy Eating board for more detox drinks and health recipes for the season.
Yours in Health,
#SpringHealthTips #HealthTips #AcupunctureandHealth
The Affordable Care Act or ACA has been constantly in the news since October last year when the (largely faulty) exchange websites went live. Yes, the health care exchange rollout has been fraught with difficulty and enrollment has been challenging, but despite these issues, I personally feel the Affordable Care Act is an amazing success - over a million uninsured Americans have signed up for coverage already! It is truly is a landmark piece of legislation not only for America as a whole, but for Acupuncturists in particular.
Though insurance companies have been able to extend existing plans a little longer due to the 2 year grace period the feds announced last week, under the Affordable Care Act more people have access to Acupuncture and alternative medicine coverage in the United States than ever before. Under ACA, alternative medicine is poised to thrive because:
As to the last clause above, this kind of research is being done slowly but surely in Europe and has resulted in some great advances for Acupuncturists in Germany in particular. A study on back pain and knee arthritis called The German Acupuncture Trials showed that Acupuncture and standard care both resulted in approximately the same outcome. Subsequently, Acupuncture is now covered by socialized German healthcare for these conditions.
More studies like this conducted in (and therefore recognized by) the U.S. will result in everyone making better decisions about medical intervention at various stages. If you had a choice between arthroscopic knee surgery for osteoarthritis ($50,000 price tag) and acupuncture (6-12 visits at $70 each) which would you, and your insurance company, choose knowing the outcome would be approximately the same? Acupuncture is the clear winner for the average case - less expensive, less invasive, virtually risk free, natural and research-proven to be effective!
An Acupuncturists Perspective on the Affordable Care Act
From an Acupuncturists perspective, these things are a big win for our industry. The Affordable Care Act has resulted in increased access to Acupuncture by
The Affordable Care Act is an incredible first step towards something desperately needed in our country - true health care access for all as a national right. Is it perfect? Not quite. Is it going to continue to go through changes in the coming years? Undoubtedly. But the standard has been set and (hopefully!) there’s no going back now.
Wondering if your insurance covers Acupuncture? I’m always happy to check benefits for potential patients, so if you want to check your benefits please email me your name, date of birth and health insurance information and I’ll be happy to verify your benefits before your first visit or consultation!
Until next time,
Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture is one of my favorite tools in my toolbox because it is a natural Botox alternative that really does work. Really, it does! Is it a quick fix? No, like all forms of natural medicine it takes time, but the time is worth the results because it creates lasting change that can be maintained with minimal effort.
Facial Acupuncture can:
Why Facial Rejuvenation Works
Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture, also called Facial Rejuvenation or Facial Acupuncture, works by combining the ancient holistic approach of Traditional Chinese Medicine with a focused localized treatment to create both short term and long term change in the skin. Local treatment focuses on improving Qi and Blood circulation as well as decreasing lines and wrinkles with specialized Acupuncture and Gua Sha techniques. These techniques act on the face in several direct ways:
Aging in Chinese Medicine is defined as the natural decline of Kidney Qi and specific facial concerns relate to different additional underlying factors. Big pores and oily skin? These are often combined with puffiness around the eyes and indicate issues with Dampness - an issue with Spleen/Stomach Qi. Oily skin and big pores, therefore, are commonly combined with digestive issues both big and small. Facial Acupuncture treatment in this case will focus not only on bolstering Kidney Qi, but also on physical and energetic digestive function.
Dry skin combined with redness? Perhaps acne around the chin in addition along with intermittent insomnia? These issues relate to Kidney Yin balance and heat production. Facial Acupuncture for these concerns will include treatment for hormone balance, heat clearing and Kidney Yin stregnthening. Your sleep may improve in addition to your skin!
This is just a sample, but as you can see, a holistic approach to anti-aging can have far reaching results.
What Can I Expect from Facial Acupuncture Treatment?
Generally speaking, Facial Acupuncture is considered a natural Botox treatment or a Botox alternative because the visual results are similar. It is not as instantaneous as Botox and a course of treatment is required for success, but since Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture treatment addresses skin, muscle, hormone balancing and circulation at the most basic level, the changes wrought by treatment are not a temporary fix through chemical alteration - they are lasting changes to the composition and structure of the face on physical, cellular and energetic levels.
Some patients see up to 10 years of aging come off the face. Most patients find that their peers start asking them if they’ve gone away for the weekend because they look so bright and well rested. The changes in the skin are also palpable - most patients can feel that their skin is plumper and smoother.
A standard course of treatment is 12 treatments completed over 9 weeks (2x/week for 3 weeks and then 1x/week thereafter) with follow up treatments recommended every 4-6 weeks. The younger you are the less treatment is required to create change. The addition of home care - such as gua sha/massage protocols, regular traditional facials and individually suited skin care regimes - can improve results and are highly recommended adjuncts to therapy.
If you’re interested in learning more, please don’t hesitate to contact Rebecca or book a free consultation any time. Facial Acupuncture is an exciting natural Botox alternative for both treatment and prevention!
Until next time,
Rebecca M H Kitzerow is a Licensed Acupuncturist practicing in La Center, Washington. With over a decade of experience she has won 10 Nattie consumer choice awards from Natural Awakenings Magazine since 2014.