What is Acupuncture?
Several thousand years ago, East Asian practitioners discovered that the body forms disharmonies as a result of the various physical and mental stresses of life. Oriental medical theory explains these disharmonies as an imbalance of the metaphorical opposing forces called yin and yang (hot and cold, acid and alkaline, etc). This imbalance disrupts the proper movement of the body’s blood and fluids, causing pain or disease. By inserting and manipulating needles at specific points on the body, I am able to restore the proper flow of your blood and fluids in order to return the body to its natural balance and promote the body’s ability to heal itself.
What Does Acupuncture Feel Like?
Many first-time patients are concerned that acupuncture needles will feel like hypodermic injections at the doctor’s office. They won’t. Acupuncture uses hair-thin, flexible needles that you will hardly feel when I insert them. When I gently stimulate the needles they may produce a unique sensation that Oriental medicine calls de qi. Patients often describe de qi as a heavy, achy pressure, or spreading, traveling feeling. You may also feel an “electrical” sensation moving down the body, though this is less common. Most patients find these acupuncture sensations deeply satisfying and leave the treatment feeling relaxed both mentally and physically.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
The benefits of acupuncture are cumulative, so more then one treatment is necessary. For acute conditions you can expect to have 10 to 15 treatments, but you will usually begin to feel relief after just the first few. Chronic conditions may take longer to respond, depending on the type, severity, and duration of the condition. Preventative treatments and treatments for general well-being may also be scheduled on an as-needed basis.
Is Acupuncture Safe?
Yes. Acupuncture is used by millions of Americans every year. Acupuncturists are required to undergo extensive education, including detailed study of human anatomy and training in Clean Needle Technique. I have passed comprehensive national board examinations administered by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) and am licensed by the state. As required by law, I use pre-sterilized, disposable, single-use needles to ensure your complete safety.
Your First Visit
When you arrive for your first acupuncture appointment I will ask you to complete a comprehensive intake form. The acupuncture intake form asks questions about your current state of health, past illnesses, and family history. These questions are important because the holistic approach of Oriental medicine takes everything into account. Your current symptoms may not seem related to past health issues, but our bodies are complex landscapes and everything that happens to them leaves its mark.
After reviewing your intake form, we will discuss your condition, and I will examine your pulse and tongue, which are two of the basic diagnostic methods of Oriental medicine. The acupuncture points I choose will depend on your condition, but you can expect approximately 20 needles. Once the needles are inserted, I will leave you to lie comfortably for 15-20 minutes with the needles in place. Many people find acupuncture treatment deeply relaxing, and it is not uncommon for patients to fall asleep during this time.
What Can Acupuncture Treat?
Acupuncture works by activating the body’s own healing powers, so it can be beneficial for many health conditions. The World Health Organization (WHO) has documented many symptoms, diseases, and conditions that have been shown in controlled clinical trials to be effectively treated with acupuncture.
Although acupuncture is known to successfully treat a vast array of medical conditions, Purple Cloud specializes in emotional/spiritual wellness, as well as the common conditions that are most likely caused by emotional/spiritual disharmony:
- Panic attacks
- Chronic fatigue
- Adrenal fatigue
- Hormone imbalance
- Brain fog
- Back, neck and shoulder tension
- Hip pain
- Jaw pain (TMJ Syndrome)
- Heartburn, Acid Reflux
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Chronic indigestion
- Chronic loose stools or constipation
- Acute and chronic gastritis
- Morning sickness
- Nausea and vomiting