Smell the Flowers: Acupuncture and Allergies

Flowers 1Acupuncture offers an effective drug free treatment for allergies.  So you can smell the flowers without worrying about being too drowsy and foggy brained.

Acupuncture is different than taking a pill

Antihistamines are commonly taken for allergies.  These are medicines which block the chemicals called histamines that cause the symptoms of allergies.

Acupuncture is different than taking a pill.  Rather than a medication that will temporarily block a receptor, histamine in the case of allergies, acupuncture works to regulate the body’s functioning. The goals is for long term improvement from the acupuncture treatment.

How does acupuncture work?

The idea is … Read More

Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatment of Perioral Dermatitis

Perioral dermatitis is a condition of the face that causes troublesome bumps, dry skin, irritation, and a red rash around the mouth. Those with perioral dermatitis (POD) know that it affects more than just the skin causing worry and anxiety about your appearance, what you use on the skin, what you are eating, and anything that may be causing this upsetting dermatitis on the face!

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine are powerful natural treatments for perioral dermatitis and have been used for thousands of years to treat skin conditions.

Perioral Dermatitis in Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine

Acupuncture and Chinese … Read More

What is Chinese Medicine?

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a term that refers to medicine practices developed in China and other parts of Asia.  Traditional Chinese Medicine generally covers many types of modalities including acupuncture and moxibustion, Chinese Herbal remedies, Tui Na or Chinese Medical Massage, as well as other manual therapies including gua sha (spoon massage or coining) and cupping.

In China, the term Chinese medicine (in Chinese it is called Zhong Yi 中医) often refers to the practice of Chinese herbal medicine.  Although it can also refer to the entire practice of Chinese medicine. While acupuncture refers to acupuncture and moxibustion.

Some of … Read More

Acupuncture and Moxibustion

The Meaning of Zhen Jiu ( 针灸)

Moxibustion on HandAcupuncture 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 … Read More

Traditional Chinese Medicine: A Literary Medicine

“And when you do find one, observe with care…they almost always have crystals in their hearts.”

From Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

To understand Chinese medicine better, we also have to think about how acupuncture and Chinese medicine conceptualize and describe the body.

The Language of Acupuncture and Chinese medicine

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese medicine is a comprehensive medical system with it own diagnosis and treatment.  The terminology and language is also unique.

Sometimes, acupuncture language may sound a little magical.  We may say that a headache is caused by liver qi stagnation in one … Read More

How Long is an Acupuncture Treatment

Acupuncturists have a choice in terms of how long the acupuncture treatment is. Different times have different clinical effects.

Most often, the acupuncture needles are retained in the acupuncture points for 20-30 minutes.  Traditionally we say it takes 30 minutes for the qi, the body’s energy, to circulate in the channels.

But if it is an acute situation, such as a back spasm, it is generally better to leave the acupuncture needles in for 15 minutes or less.  This is because the muscles will relax quicker in an acute injury like a back spasm.

When the energy is weak, what … Read More

What Acupuncturists observe in a tongue

Observing the tongue and taking the pulse are two of the most common diagnostic techniques in Chinese medicine.

Why look at the tongue?

Chinese medicine uses diagnostic approaches, like the tongue and the pulse, because they reflect the imbalances that are causing your health problem.

What are we looking for in the tongue?

When I am looking at the tongue, I am looking at the the color of the tongue, the size and shape of the tongue body, and the coating on top of the tongue.

If the tongue is very red, or very pale that can show there is … Read More

Natural Remedies for the Common Cold

I have often written about herbal remedies for treating common colds.  Today, I will expand on the two most common herbal formulas I use for preventing common colds: Ling Zhi and Gan Mao Ling.1.  Ling Zhi (ganoderma or Reishi): This Chinese herb is a mushroom that has powerful immune boosting properties.  We say it can boost the body’s qi, or energy. It can also be effective for fatigue and poor digestion.

This herb is best for preventing colds.  Now, the change of seasons, is the perfect time to begin taking Ling Zhi. When the seasons change it is

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Healing Soup for the Change of Seasons

As we all know that the change of season can easily cause a common cold.   Eating soup is a good way to boost up your qi.

There is no big secret to vegetable soup.  I eat it all the time, especially during the change of seasons to prevent colds from coming on.  I particularly like it during the colder months, summer to fall, because it helps to warm the body and open the respiratory system with aromatic vegetables.

Ingredients:
1 large yellow onion
4 carrots
2 turnips
2 celery stalks
1 bay leaf
fresh parsley
1 teaspoon of sea salt … Read More

Back Pain after a Car Accident

Chronic back pain and neck pain often develops after a car accident.   It can happen directly after the accident or gradually over a period of time.   Sometimes, people with chronic neck and back pain just doesn’t seem to get better, no matter what they try, even if there are no findings on the x-rays and MRI tests.

Acupuncture is very effective at reducing chronic back pain after a car accident.

In acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine  the concept of circulation is unique and can be the reason acupuncture works when other therapies do not.

Acupuncture Meridians

The body is interconnected … Read More