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These modalities include the options of acupuncture, herbal prescriptions, dietary therapy, tui na (Chinese medical massage), Mayan abdominal massage, cupping, and gua sha. See below for more details.
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This will include a thorough intake with an in depth discussion to fully evaluate the patient's health history and current condition and includes a treatment session.
This includes a brief review of the current condition to assess progress with most of the time spent on treatment.
This includes a brief review of the current condition to assess progress with most of the time spent on treatment. This can also be a distance appointment that includes acupressure points instead of acupuncture.
Pay in advance for your follow-up visits and get a discount ($40 off).
This consultation is for COVID patients to be able to receive an herbal blend. Please note that the cost of the herbs are separate.
Patients must give by text or voicemail at least 24 hours notice to reschedule or cancel an appointment. Failure to do so will incur a $50 fee. Appointment reminder texts/emails are given as a courtesy by the office. Failure to receive one does not change the reschedule policy or fee. Please do not wait for a reminder
Services will be determined at the time of intake by the practitioner as deemed necessary at time of treatment. All services rendered are included in the price of the office visit. Herbal formulas, if prescribed, are a separate charge. In a one-hour treatment session, one or more of these modalities may be utilized.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is the insertion of thin filiform single use sterile needles at specific points of the body by a well trained and licensed acupuncturist. The needles are inserted quickly and relatively painlessly as they are not hollow nor meant to draw blood as hypodermic needles do. The needles are the width of a few strands of hair and are flexible. Once inserted many people go into a state of deep relaxation which is conducive for healing and some patients even fall asleep.
Acupuncture works by allowing the body to relax, while helping the body to get more out of its own natural healing resources. These internal resources include increased blood flow, release of endorphins, hormone stimulation, immune system enhancers, natural anti- inflammatory chemistry, etc. In this way acupuncture helps rebalance the body’s systems to regulate and maintain homeostasis.
What is Chinese herbal medicine?
Chinese herbal medicine is made up of organic substances mostly from plants including leaves, flowers, roots, rhizomes, seeds, peels, barks, resins, and fruits and sometimes includes minerals. These herbs have their own unique flavors and medicinal properties and are hand chosen by the practitioner to combine in such a way to make a formula that is unique to the individual user.
I prescribe Evergreen herbal granules. This brand is thoroughly tested for the utmost in purity, safety and efficacy, they are pesticide free and contain no contaminating constituents. Granules are easy and quick to prepare and are made from raw herbs in a concentrated form. Unlike decoctions (raw herbs you cook for hours yourself) these granules have no strong smells or unpleasant taste and use about a shot’s worth of liquid to be taken.
Some benefits of Chinese herbal medicine is that it is non addictive, when properly prescribed and taken it is safe, and does not cause harmful side effects as many pharmaceuticals do.
What is Tui na? ( pronounced twee nah)
Tui na is one of the main branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is a form of Chinese medical massage. Tui na uses a variety of techniques including pressing, pulling, kneading, rolling, stretching, and gentle shaking. This system of techniques is designed to decrease pain, aids in speeding healing time, increases range of motion, breaks up scar tissue as well as it increases circulation throughout the entire body.
Techniques are chosen to suit the patient’s chief complaints and can be used alone or after acupuncture treatment. It is done without oils or lotions, over the clothes either lying down or in an upright seated position.
Tui na is a vigorous form of bodywork that can sometimes feel stimulating and at times very relaxing. The best part about tui na is that it feels good! It makes one feel good as it helps restore the body’s natural balance.
What is cupping?
Cupping is an ancient practice in Chinese medicine that traditionally involves the use of glass vessels of various sizes and a flame to create a vacuum when placed on a body part. To increase safety and efficacy of control over the amount of suction, I now use modern silicone cups that no longer require the use of a flame to work. The silicone cups can be left stationary in one place such as on the back, shoulder areas, calves or hamstrings. I may also use herbal medicated oils on the skin to allow for gliding cupping over the areas to be treated, this feels like an inverse massage as the skin and muscles are suctioned into the cup. Cupping brings stagnant blood and old cellular debris from deep down up to the surface. In doing so it increases blood flow to the area and breaks up adhesions in the fascia. This helps to relax muscles, relieve pain, tension and will increase range of motion in the area. It is also used to end a cold or flu quickly. Many gold winning Olympians use it to get the most out of their performance and help in recovery.
Can anyone receive treatment?
Although a non-invasive form of treatment, Chinese cupping is not recommended for pregnant women in their third trimester. Patients that have bone fractures or muscle spasms also cannot be given treatments. Further, in cases of patients that have a form of cancer that is spreading from one part of the body to the other, cupping is not advised. If the patient suffers from a condition of which they bleed easily or they have high fever with convulsions, the therapist may refrain from providing treatment. There are certain areas of the body where cupping must not be used such as an artery, ulcer, pulse points or any part where there is evidence of deep vein thrombosis. Since cupping treatments are usually performed on the soft tissues such as the fleshy parts of the body, therapists might not provide treatment to very thin patients.
Are there any side-effects?
Patients usually do not experience any serious side-effects. There will be some minor bruising or discoloration where the cups have been which is to be expected. These effects are generally not painful and disappear in a few days to a week and leave no lasting impressions. If you are going to be wearing something revealing and do not want others to see the marks, you may want to postpone treatment.
What is gua sha? (pronounced gwah shah)
Excerpted from an online article in breakingmuscle.com called, “Scrape Away The Pain- Gua Sha” by Traver H. Boehm
“I am typing today while sore as heck with a nose that’s running like a faucet. Today is no fun. Fortunately, I have a lovely live-in acupuncturist who is going to make me feel much better using a little known, but extremely effective tool – gua sha.
Gua translates directly from Chinese as, “to scrape.” While sha translates as, “sand” for the sandy like appearance of redness that appears after the scraping with a specific gua sha tool, usually a plastic spoon or a round metal lid or cap. Traditional Chinese Medicine has long believed illnesses such as colds get trapped on the exterior of our bodies where they meet the “troops” of our immune system.This confrontation is why we suffer effects on the exterior of our bodies - when we get colds, we feel them as aches in our necks, headaches, runny noses, and the like. This is in contradiction to an “interior” illness such as liver cancer, that is not going to present itself with watery eyes, sneezing and coughing.
Traditional Chinese Medicine also believes muscle soreness and injuries are in essence traffic jams of blood and Qi. “Qi” literally has entire volumes written about it in the form of explanations, but for our purposes, we’ll just call it - energy. Put simply, when you wake up and feel great, you have a lot of Qi. When you wake up and feel like you can’t get out of bed, you don’t have a lot of Qi.
Whether you believe in Qi or not, we’ve all found relief from rubbing an injury or sore muscle – which is clearly promoting an increase in blood flow, thus lessening the pain.
Performing gua sha involves taking a gua sha tool and repeatedly rubbing or scraping the tool on the skin over the sore area. Often oil is applied to the skin first. In my case, due to my cold, the treatment will be given over my upper back, neck and shoulders. This will also help lessen the soreness I have in those areas as well.
"Sha" is best defined as the red splotches or petechia that appear on the skin from rubbing the spoon or tool repeatedly over the affected area. Blood flow is decreased anytime we have a spasm or injury. Both lactic and uric acid can get trapped underneath the skin or within a bound up muscle due to the lack of drainage caused by the decreased blood flow. One theory is that this metabolic waste turns crystalline and breaking these crystals with the spoon or gua sha tool can lead to microscopic trauma to blood vessels. Signs of these metabolic waste products being released into the tissue become evident in the form of sha. This sha is a positive sign for an initial treatment as it lets you know changes are happening in the underlying muscle tissue and fascia.
After an acute illness or injury the amount of redness, or sha, will be heavy post treatment. It may even appear there is bruising to the area. This bruising and redness will decrease over time. Usually within a week. Repeated treatments will illicit less and less of the sha with each session. This gives us insight into the fact that something is being released and then cleared out from the area and is seen as another positive sign. The lessening of the sha should also be accompanied by a significant decrease in symptoms.”
The benefits of gua sha include a marked decrease in pain. There is also greater range of motion in sore muscles, and it helps to clear out a cold or flu much quicker, giving relief to symptoms of soreness and achiness.
What is dietary therapy and nutritional counseling?
After your initial intake which covers discussing your whole body system to find out which areas are in need of balancing, the practitioner in cooperation with the patient will decide if dietary therapy/nutritional counseling will be beneficial. Awareness of what the patient is actually putting into their body including the types of food and drink, the time, amounts and how it affects their mood will be recorded for one week with a food journal. The practitioner will then evaluate the information given and make healthy suggestions as to balance the health of that individual. Traditional Chinese Medicine assigns various temperatures and flavors to the nature of various foods and the practitioner will advise the patient on ones to include and/or avoid according to their unique underlying condition. No two people will be given the same recommendations.
For example if the patient has been given a diagnosis of an underlying heat condition from the perspective of traditional Chinese Medicine then the practitioner would like to balance that by suggesting foods that are cooling in nature etc.
In addition to this approach, the practitioner will look at the patient’s condition and help identify and eliminate food sensitivities or triggers as well as foods that can cause inflammation or difficulties in digestion.