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moxibustion on hand

“I used to think that acupuncture was hocus pocus.  But now I am happy I tried,” a once skeptical now relieved patient said to me. People new to acupuncture are sometimes wary because they think it’s magical.  But after experiencing an acupuncture treatment, they usually feel very different.  This is because acupuncture relaxes the body, decreases pain, and regulates the nervous system, so you physically feel different after an acupuncture treatment. Research has shown that acupuncture works by regulating pain relieving chemicals in the brain , modifying pain patterns within the nervous system, as well as stimulating the release of anti-inflammtory chemicals in cells close to the needles. (1,2,3) A Language of its Own While acupuncture has real physiological effects on

Acupuncture close on back

I used to have back pain and back spasms on a regular basis. Thanks to acupuncture and tai ji practice I have not had a back spasm in years. Until last week. A lot has been going on recently with me, moving into our new acupuncture office, we remodeled our apartment, and we have a little one on the way. I’ve had a lot on my mind. Also the New York weather has been humid which tightens my back muscles. When my back seized up, the pain was mostly on the right side of my lumbar. My lower back was so tight I could not stand straight and the pain was intense in my lumbar and sacrum. I could barely

Skin diseases are one of the most common reasons to see your doctor. Yet, they are often stubborn conditions which do not respond to medications.  Or even worse the medications have side effects. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine offers a natural and effective treatment for many skin conditions, such as acne, eczema, psoriasis, perioral dermatitis, and others. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine has been treating skin diseases for at least 3000 years. The treatment of many skin diseases were discussed in the first known book of Chinese medicine, The Yellow Emperor’s Inner Classic (Huang Di Nei Jing). In the thousands of years since, Chinese medicine doctors and scholars discussed and debated the best approaches to treatment of skin conditions. Traditional Chinese Medicine Understanding

It finally warmed up here in New York (well kind of) and I was out for a bike ride in Central Park.  It was a beautiful sunny blue sky day.   The tulips are in bloom and buds on the trees are coming out.  Everyone is excited to get out on their bike or go for a walk in the park.  Spring is in the air. Spring being in the air also means pollen is too.  During my ride, my throat became a little scratchy.  My eyes were becoming dry and irritated.   After I returned home, my sinuses felt full and heavy.  Allergies have arrived. Acupuncture and Herbal Formula for Sinus Congestion Acupuncture and herbs work wonders to prevent

The introductory class for Acupressure for Self Healing at the New York Open Center is on Monday November 5th 2012 at 6pm.   Interested in learning more about how you can use acupressure to relieve headaches, menstrual cramps, digestive problems, and improve overall health? Then you should come to my class at the New York Open Center in November 2012. What is acupressure? Acupressure is a traditional Chinese healing art in which physical pressure is applied to acupuncture points with the hand (rather than with needles as in acupuncture), so it can be practiced by everyone. How does acupressure work? Acupressure can helps to circulate and balance our qi (energy) to improve our overall health and wellness or help address specific conditions

The process of treating back pain with acupuncture, or any pain for that matter, is complex.  As an acupuncturist, we have many factors to consider in the treatment. Important factors for the acupuncturist to decide are what acupuncture points to use, how long the needles stay in, what position the patient should lie, the use of electro-acupuncture, additional use of cups, and other factors. 1. How to choose acupuncture points: Acupuncture points can be chosen based on location of the pain, type of the pain, and the underlying imbalances causes the pain.  Some pain, such as pain from sciatica, is best relieved by acupuncture locally in the lower back, around the sacrum, and throughout the course of the sciatic nerve.

Patients in my New York Acupuncture clinic are always curious how acupuncturists choose the correct acupuncture points.  There are a number of ways to choose the acupuncture points. The basic idea with acupuncture is to correct the underlying imbalance in the body.  This can help to stimulate the body to heal itself.  We acupuncturists will determine the imbalance by our examination.  For example, if there is lack of circulation  of the energy, what we call qi stagnation, we’ll choose points to move the qi.  A common combination for moving the qi is Liv 3 and LI 4. I find that acupuncture is most effective by changing the focus of the treatment overtime. At first, we may focus on releasing tension

Electroacupuncture on abdomen

Acupuncture is a constantly evolving art.  Electro-acupuncture was only developed within the last 100 years. Electro-acupuncture can be used for many conditions such as hormone imbalances, menstural cramps, poor digestion, stroke, Parkinsons and other issues.   But it is most often used to augment the pain relieving and anti-inflammatory aspects of acupuncture.(1,2) The pain relief with electro-acupuncture can be so dramatic it has been used for certain types of surgery in China. Electro-acupuncture is very similar to regular acupuncture.  That is the acupuncture point selection is generally the same.  Electro-acupuncture provides additional small amount electric stimulation to the acupuncture needles.  The electric stimulation enhances muscle relaxation, the release of natural pain killers in the body, as well as decreases inflammation.(3) History

Moxibustion on Hand

The Meaning of Zhen Jiu ( 针灸) Acupuncture is not just acupuncture.  In fact, the word for acupuncture in Chinese, Zhen Jiu, actually  translates to “acupuncture and moxibustion”  which shows how central moxibustion is within acupuncture. Moxibustion is the warming of acupuncture points or needles.  Most often, this is done through burning an herb called mugwort.  It can also be done with heat lamps as well as herbal lotions. In my office, we use smokeless moxibustion because it is treated and does not create much smoke. How does Moxibustion work? Just like with acupuncture, moxibustion focuses on correcting the underlying imbalance in the body. Because it is warming, generally moxibustion is used when there is cold in the body.  Moxibustion

Winter is here.  It comes as no surprise that the cold and damp weather means achy and painful joints and an exacerbation of arthritis. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine have understood this seasonal phenomena for thousands of years.  According to acupuncture, cold and damp can become stuck in the joints disrupting the normal function and circulation which leads to pain. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine work to warm the body and increase circulation leading to a decrease in pain.  Warming the acupuncture points and acupuncture channels helps to dislodge the cold. How can acupuncture warm the joints? In the west, most people think of acupuncture as the use of acupuncture needles with acupuncture points.  But really, acupuncture therapy encompasses much more. In