Can Acupuncture Be an Antidote to Addiction?

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Life can be stressful. And when things are a little hectic, it’s understandable to want to unwind a bit with a drink or other substance. But for many among us, the ability to control those impulses is much more difficult. Alcohol and many drugs are designed with addictive properties in mind. For many, a brief dalliance can soon turn into full-fledged addiction. One in seven people in the U.S. will experience a problem with alcohol or drug use in their lifetimes, and approximately 20 million people currently have substance abuse issues. Sadly, 78 people die of overdose every day.

What compounds the problem is that the far majority of people suffering from addiction don’t receive any help towards recovery. Many rehabilitations and recovery centers can be expensive and difficult to access. What if there were a relatively inexpensive, safe, and effective way to treat substance addiction? Recent research from Daegy Haany University and Qiqihar Medical University in China suggests that acupuncture may be just that solution.

They studied acupuncture as a means of suppressing addiction related to self-administration of intravenous methamphetamines. The controlled experiment tested two specific acupuncture points, HT7 and LI5. “Acupuncture at the specific acupoint HT7, but not at the control acupoint LI5, markedly suppressed the methamphetamine self-administration behavior,” the study determined.

The researchers chose these points for a reason. HT7, specifically is a yuan source point for the heart channel and is a target for treatment of many neurological disorders, including addiction. Thankfully, research suggests that treatment of this point has wide-ranging benefits when it comes to misuse of substances:

“The researchers cite eight independent investigations finding HT7 effective for ameliorating the effects of drug addiction. The investigations found acupuncture effective for ameliorating the addictive effects of nicotine, methamphetamines, morphine, alcohol, and cocaine.”

Nobody should suffer from alcohol and substance addiction. Thankfully, it appears as though there’s a safe, effective and accessible step to take in the road to recovery.

 

 

Making Acupuncture More Accessible

The benefits of acupuncture are wide-ranging. It’s one of the safest, most natural ways
to heal pain, discomfort, and symptoms from a number of diseases and disorders out
there. However, there are too many people out there who aren’t able to afford holistic
treatments like acupuncture. And it doesn’t help that many insurance companies have
been slow to respond to acupuncture’s popularity and recognize it as a viable, safe way
to treat pain and cover it in their plans.

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One wellness center in Philadelphia is doing its part to make a difference. At Village
Wellness, the licensed acupuncturists have begun offering a low-cost acupuncture
treatment by treating patients in groups—they’re calling it community acupuncture.
“To make it more accessible for people, the way we do that is we can lower the price if I
can see six people at once, instead of seeing one person at a time,” explained Gabrielle
Geib, an acupuncturist at VillageWellness.


It is worth noting that the the community setting may not be best for every patient, as
Geib notes that during the community sessions she only works on patients’ hands, feet,
and head—though many different conditions throughout the body can be treated
through points in these areas.


Still, the community setting has an added benefit for many of the patients.


“I like the camaradiere even though there’s not talking,” says patient Maryann Schofield.
Group settings can have great benefits for our mental health. Many people who haven’t
tried acupuncture before may be more willing to try it out knowing they will be amongst
others who either have had a great experience with acupuncture in the past or are also
experiencing it for the first time.


While community acupuncture is not widely available and might be limited in its scope of
what it can treat, it’s a great thing when more and more people are able to afford and
experience the amazing benefits of acupuncture.

Acupuncture for Allergies

As we hit the middle of May, we’re right in the middle of springtime and everything that comes with it. Nice temperatures, the blooming of flowers and trees, plenty of sunshine, spring cleaning. All great things, right? But for many, it’s also allergy season.

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You know the feeling. You walk outside on a beautiful day and all of a sudden you’re sniffling and sneezing and constantly pulling from the tissue box. Many people’s first instinct is to pop an antihistamine like Zyrtec or Claritin and go about their day.

Others with more severe allergies take medications consistently to try and prevent the side effects.


But researchers in Germany have found that there’s an alternative for antihistamines when it comes to treating allergic rhinitis and sinus disorders—acupuncture.

All of the patients involved in the study suffered from seasonal allergic rhinitis for over two years and fell within the age range of 16-45. They were broke into three groups—one receiving acupuncture, one receiving dummy acupuncture, and one receiving the antihistamine Cetirizine (in the U.S., commonly known as Zyrtec).

While the folks receiving both the “real” and “fake” acupuncture treatments were encouraged to take antihistamines on their own throughout the 8-week trial period, the study showed that the group receiving acupuncture didn’t feel the need to take their antihistamines as often as the others. That’s because acupuncture was found to be a far better alternative than merely taking medication.


“The researchers add, seasonal allergic rhinitis ‘symptoms decreased significantly in the acupuncture group compared with the other study groups,’" the study says.


When the weather turns for springtime, allergies can really put a damper on quality of life and the ability to live an active lifestyle. If you’re one of the many people who dread the coming sniffles and sore throats, acupuncture can help you get back to enjoying this beautiful time of the year.

Acupuncture Shown to Improve IVF Success Rate

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Infertility is one of the most under-talked about issues facing women and families across the world. There are many reasons women may struggle with infertility, and every women is different. Whether the cause of infertility is known or unknown, it can be a stressful and difficult thing for women and families to cope with.

When struggling to get pregnant naturally, many families will turn to alternative fertility methods. Success rates vary depending on the individual, but intrauterine insemination (commonly known as IUI) has an average success rate of 20%, while In Vitro Fertilization (commonly known as IVF) has an average success rate of 40% for women under 35, with decreasing rate at older ages.

These treatments are incredible modern medical marvels, and their success rates will only likely rise, but they can be very costly and time consuming for families. What if there were a natural, safe way to increase the chances of a procedure like IVF working to bring a beautiful baby into the world?

That might just be happening. A recent study conducted at Homerton University Hopsital in London, UK reveals that acupuncture has been shown to significantly increase the success rate of IVF. In the study, the ongoing pregnancy rate of those who received acupuncture was over 53%, and just under 28% for those who did not.

“The protocol uses acupuncture points to stimulate blood circulation to the ovaries in order to achieve good follicle quantity and size,” says Karen Gillerman,LAc, BSc (Hons), MBAcC, the lead author of the study. “It also uses points to stimulate blood flow to the uterus and improve the uterine lining, as well as points to relax the patient.”

Infertility can be one of the more trying things for a family to endure, something we wish on nobody. But acupuncture is here to help.

 

Is Acupuncture replacing opioids as the treatment of choice for pain?

Stephen Newman of Cleveland, Ohio has for years dealt with two rare and painful conditions. Ankylosing Spondylitis is an inflammatory arthritis of the spine, and common variable immunodeficiency, which is an inherited immune disorder. Both conditions bring with them painful side effects, which Stephen had been dealing with since his teens—back then, he was told it was probably merely growing pains.

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But the pain continued into adulthood. Primarily, Stephen had been treating the discomfort with prescription painkillers. Additionally, he received infusions of antibodies to support his weak immune system. 

Of the medications, Stephen said: "They don't address the underlying cause, so I was still in pain and the damage is being done from the inflammation and autoimmune disorder It was only treating the surface symptom.”

Eventually, Stephen tried acupuncture. "Once I started doing the acupuncture and everything to treat the underlying cause, that's when I really started to get better…my doctors can't believe how well I'm doing now." Acupuncture has helped Stephen so much that his immune disorder recently went into remission.

Hopefully, there will be many more Stephens out there in the future who turn to acupuncture to treat pain and discomfort rather than rely on opioids. In Ohio, Medicaid has recently expanded to cover acupuncture treatments after an opioid task force determined that additional treatments be available for people dealing with chronic pain.

The trend appears to be going in the right direction. According to government surveys, 1 in 67 people say they get acupuncture every year; it may not seem like a lot, but that’s up from 1 in 91 people just a decade ago.

“We have a really serious problem here,” said Dr. Mary Applegate, medical director for Ohio’s Medicaid department. “If it’s proven to be effective, we don’t want to have barriers in the way of what could work.”

The evidence is certainly showing that acupuncture does work, and is much safer than opioids for treating pain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Versatile Benefits of Acupuncture

Acupuncture is becoming more and more popular around the world as its wide-ranging benefits become more well-known. But exactly how many different disorders and diseases can acupuncture treat? While the number is by no means exact or binding, the World Health Organization currently recognizes acupuncture as an effective treatment for 47 diseases.

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Many people seek out acupuncture as a treatment for general pain. But that pain is usually associated with a larger disease or disorder that is acting as the root cause. Those diseases are too often treated with medications that, while come can be effective, many times bring about a whole set of negative side effects as well. And we’ve learned more and more about the addictive properties of opioids, which many people are prescribed to treat all sorts and levels of pain.

“A lot of people are seeking a natural treatment in order to reduce the number of medications they take,” says Ning Qian, licensed acupuncturist with the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners who has been performing acupuncture for decades.

Qian treats patients who have consistently dealt with what are considered common illnesses, such as sinusitis, the flu, allergies and tonsillitis, as well as diseases and disorders like Parkinson’s Bell’s palsy, hypertension and more.

The fascinating and thing about acupuncture is that it doesn’t input anything into our body that isn’t already there. That’s why it is both such a safe and versatile treatment. Licensed acupuncturists know the body’s 360 major acupoints and which ones need to be stimulated based on the patient’s pain or disease they may be suffering from.

“When the needle is placed into the acupoint,” Ning says, “it allows blood and energy to flow into the targeted area.”

Acupuncture is also beneficial to people who haven’t been diagnosed with any disease or disorder, but want to increase their day to day energy and vitality. Qian treats patients who have consistently dealt with what are considered common illnesses, such as sinusitis, the flu, allergies and tonsillitis, as well as diseases and disorders like Parkinson’s Bell’s

 

Acupuncture for Kids - Yay or Nay?

Acupuncture for your kids…yay or nay?

You may have experienced the benefits of acupuncture yourself. Or perhaps you’ve been lucky enough to never have to seek it out as a treatment, but have a friend or family member who swears by it. But when you’ve tried everything else to manage your child’s chronic headaches, stomachaches, common cold and more, you hesitate. Can acupuncture really be safe for my kid? Won’t sticking needles into them totally freak them out?

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It’s understandable that parents would be at first apprehensive about bringing their child to receive acupuncture treatment. But the good news is that there’s no reason not to: acupuncture is safe for children.

"Disorders that are common to children such as common colds, cough, flu, allergies, asthma, digestive disorders, anxiety, depression, and adolescent-related hormone imbalances are all treated very successfully by acupuncture," says licensed acupuncturist and mom Jill Harrison to mindbodygreen.com. "When my daughter was an infant and she had a fever, I used needles and successfully lowered her temperature. Now that she is 6, I use acupuncture, herbal medicine, and cupping to help her treat all of the common ailments that kids get."

Not only is acupuncture totally safe for children, it’s also preferable to giving them medications to treat all sorts of illnesses and disorders. The side effects and addictive properties of many stronger medications can be even more harmful to children than they are to adults.

Many children understandably don’t love needles, so they might be scared of receiving acupuncture. Every child is different, but one general positive is that in children, acupuncture needles don’t need to be in as long as they do to treat adults.

"When they see how thin they are and that they look nothing like the hypodermic needles given with shots, it puts them at ease," Harrison says. "The other thing I do is ask if I can do one quick needle on them before they lie down on the table just to see how it feels. At that point they can see for themselves that it doesn't hurt. In fact, oftentimes they don't even feel the needle go in."

Before you seek treatment for your child, so make sure that the acupuncturist is licensed to treat children. As long as they are, the next time your child is in need of a safe treatment, there’s no reason to be worried that acupuncture won’t be incredibly helpful. And it just might help them get over their fear of needles, too!

 

 

 

Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia Pain

Pain, fatigue, feeling like you’re just in a fog. For some of us, these symptoms come and go and are easily manageable. But for those who suffer from fibromyalgia, these symptoms persist and greatly affect quality of life. For many sufferers, symptoms can begin after a physical trauma, infection or event that causes major psychological stress, but for others there may be no single cause.

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According to the Mayo Clinic, “Repeated nerve stimulation causes the brains of people with fibromyalgia to change. This change involves an abnormal increase in levels of certain chemicals in the brain that signal pain (neurotransmitters).”

There are many ways people try to treat fibromyalgia pain, including medication. However, one treatment in particular is proving to be most effective in potentially restoring fibromyalgia patients to a fruitful and pain-free life.

A recent study performed at the Oregon Health and Science University showed that Individualized acupuncture in a group setting significantly decreases fatigue and pain in fibromyalgia patients, compared with standard group therapy—a treatment that has previously been shown to be helpful for fibromyalgia patients. Thirty patients who reported moderate to severe pain were treated, half of which underwent standard educational group therapy and half of which received individualized acupuncture treatments within a group setting. The half who received acupuncture treatment did so in 40-minute sessions, twice a week for a 10-week period.

The results were clear.

“Those who underwent group acupuncture showed significant improvements, which were sustained and even improved four weeks after treatment,” the results of the study said. “Fatigue scores in this group improved by 25%, and pain decreased by 2.8 points.”

With nearly 10 million people across the US suffering from fibromyalgia, chances are you may know someone who is in need of treatment from the pain, fatigue and “fibro fog” associated with the disease. If so, acupuncture may be just what they need.

 

 

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Can Acupunture Help You Lose Weight?

It's seemingly impossible these days to scroll through social media, turn on the television, or listen to the radio without being exposed to at least one advertisement regarding the latest fad, supplement or workout that is "guaranteed" to help you lose weight.

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Amongst a society that appears to be hyper-focused on health, body image and even vanity - it's important to navigate advertisements and promises with some insight into exactly what weight-loss should look and feel like, and that's health. A healthful diet and exercise are always the best way to try to achieve a healthy weight.

But, can acupuncture help?  In short, maybe. 

Psychology Today recently explored the possibility, specifically noting how ear acupuncture points can help control appetite which can then, in turn, theoretically result in weight loss. It cited a 2017 study where they examined, "18 randomized controlled studies of ear acupuncture for weight loss, though not big ones—the largest had 200 subjects. Most of the volunteers were middle-aged Asian women.  All in all, this review concluded that ear acupuncture was linked to an average loss of about 3 lbs.  Treatments that went on longer than six weeks had the best results."

Promising, right? 

It also cited research linked to the microbiome, which is the bacteria in your guts, and explained how one study actually found acupuncture can reduce them. The results? 

"Forty-five overweight or obese women in Shanghai were randomly split into three groups, including a control group that got no treatment. The other two groups received 20 acupuncture treatments focused on the abdomen for a half-hour, every other day. The points were the same for both groups, but executed by different doctors. The results: In the 30 women who received acupuncture, the average BMI dropped from close to 28 at the beginning to a bit over 25, while the control group didn’t change much."

Again, supportive that acupuncture can help with weight-loss.

If you're looking for holistic treatments to help aid you in your weight-loss journey, come in for an acupuncture consultation, and ask about our trademarked service, AcuScuplt.

How To Find Out if Acupuncture is Covered By Your Insurance

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Medical bills and dealing with insurance companies can often be quite stressful, to say the least. When trying to find a holistic treatment that can help solve an array of. Different maladies and symptoms, it can be even more frustrating. To help, here are some helpful tips that can make navigating the process a bit easier, and hopefully lead to a resolution.

Know The Terms

This may sound simple, but so many people are not aware of what. Is considered a covered expense, and what is not. Terms like “in network”, “out of network”, “deductible” and “out of pocket max,” are also enough to make your head spin.

This might help:

In-Network: A provider has agreed to join the network of providers for your specific insurer, and accept their rates/amounts for services.

Out of Network:  A provider who does not accept the plan or insurer and often is not covered, or is covered at a lesser amount that is reimbursable.

Deductible: A deductible is a specific dollar amount that your health insurance company may require that you pay (of your own money) each year before your plan starts to make payments for claims. But, not all health plans require a deductible. Most of the. Time, HMO plans typically do not require a deductible, while most Indemnity and PPO plans do. (So it’s important to know which one you have.)

Out of Pocket Max: A set figure that once. You have met, you no longer have to pay your own money for any covered services within that specific year.

Ask Your Provider & Insurer

Next, what’s most important is to first ask your desired acupuncture provider if they, in fact, even accept insurance. (NJ Acupuncture Center does!) Then, ask if they “take” and are “in or out of network” with your specific plan. If they are out of network, it is then important to call your insurance company (or check your coverage online) to see if they provide any coverage or reimbursement for out of network services. If not, it can never hurt to ask your preferred provider if they offer any special rates or discount specifically for cash-pay, or uninsured patients.

It’s also really  important to know where you stand with your deductible. If it has been met, then your coverage has kicked in. If it hasn’t yet, you might be responsible to pay in full for services until it is met. What’s even better, is if by chance your out of pocket maximum has been met, then you may not have to pay anything for the remainder of the calendar year.

For any insurance questions or concerns, we are always more than happy to help navigate and find out your coverage for you! 

Acupuncture shown to restore facial movement in stoke patients

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease and Prevention, stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States. 140,000 people in the US each year die due to a stroke. However, there are many different levels of stroke, and not all are fatal. In fact, stroke is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the country.

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Strokes occur due to restricted blood flow to the brain. When that happens, oxygen is cut off and can’t reach the brain. Depending on the level of the stroke, even a survivor may incur physical ailments as a result of the episode. These include numbness, soreness, muscle weakness and more. One common side effect is facial paralysis, one that can have a very long lasting and difficult, day-to-day impact on health and quality of life.

Thankfully, a recent study shows that one treatment in particular can help restore facial movement in stroke patients: acupuncture.

In fact, it’s a combination of acupuncture treatments that was deemed most successful. Fujian Ningde Hospital in China conducted a study of 60 patients diagnosed with post-stroke paralysis over a two-year period. All patients were administered body acupuncture, while half of the group were administered an additional acupuncture procedure to the scalp.

It’s not surprising that the body acupuncture was found to be quite successful on its own. The results of the study showed a 71% effective rate for those who received only the body acupuncture. But the addition of the scalp acupuncture raised the effective rate to just over 93%. The combination of the two was shown to bring back facial movement in nearly every patient.

“In related findings, laboratory research confirms that acupuncture supports brain repair after a stroke,” the study notes. “Yang et al. note that acupuncture “promote[s] the proliferation and differentiation of neural stem cells in the brain.”

Acupuncture is a safe, non-invasive and effective way to treat many stoke side effects, including one of the most common and life-altering.

Treating side effects of chemotherapry with acupuncture

Chemotherapy is one of the most widely-used and most-aggressive forms of cancer treatment. Even though often times the treatment is successful, it can put a tremendous amount of strain and discomfort on the recipient. Chemotherapy, while necessary in many cases, also brings along with it a wide range of symptoms and side effects. Depending on the type of treatment and type of cancer being treated, side effects can include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, infection, and more.

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At just age 32, Kim Buettner was diagnosed with breast cancer. She began chemotherapy treatment, and endured many of its side effects. Often times, doctors will prescribe medications to deal with individual side effects. But sometimes they don’t work, as they didn’t for Kim.

“I tried a lot of the other options that they gave me, but it just wasn’t working,” Kim said. “So, one of the treatment suggestions they provided was acupuncture.”

Acupuncture is an approved treatment for chemotherapy side effects by the American Cancer Society, and for good reason. Many of the body’s reactions to chemotherapy are due to the body’s energy being thrown out of whack.

“It sends a signal up to the brain and the brain secretes out opioids, a natural pain killer. Or endorphins,” said Dr. Quang Lee, who treated Kim. “It helps shifts your mood or relax you.”

“I know it’s making a difference,” Kim said.

It’s making a difference for Kim because licensed acupuncturists can create treatments to specifically treat the side effects each patient is experiencing. By creating specialized and targeted treatments, acupuncture can correct, recalibrate and restore the body’s energy. With consistent treatment, symptoms will reduce.

That makes a huge difference for those who are in their fight against cancer. While acupuncture will not sure the disease, it can greatly improve the quality of life for patients who have to endure chemotherapy. If you or someone you know is suffering from side effects due to chemotherapy, acupuncture is here to help.

 

Aches and pains? Ditch the Ibuprofen.

We all know the feeling. Maybe you slept in the wrong position, or upped your physical exertion in an effort to exercise more. Maybe you banged a knee or elbow playing a sport or stretched too far while horsing around with your kids. Or maybe you’re just getting old (it happens!). Worse off, those who complain about consistent aches and pains may suffer from arthritis.

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It’s almost like second nature for many of us to head straight to the medicine cabinet and grab for the ibuprofen bottle. Pop a few in and go on with your day. The problem is that medications like ibuprofen only address the symptom and don’t have any regenerative ability. While tears and serious injuries may require surgery and/or physical therapy, the root cause of every day aches and pains can get worse if only treated with something like ibuprofen and physician prescribed pain killers (not to mention the addictive properties of the latter).

Thankfully, there is another way—acupuncture. And a recent study performed in China has put some data behind what is becoming more commonly known; that aside from being the safer, natural alternative, acupuncture is more effective at treating arthritis than ibuprofen.

Researchers at Yueyang Hospital sampled 80 patients who suffer from arthritis, administering either ibuprofen or a combination of acupuncture and tui na massage. The second group received acupuncture treatment daily for 20 minutes for 20 days, followed by a 20 minute massage treatment. The acupuncture and tui na treatments were successful in 90% of patients as opposed to 87% in the ibuprofen group – a small but meaningful difference given the safety and holistic differences in the two approaches.

A further study showed that of acupuncture and tui na, acupuncture was the more meaningful and effective of the two treatments for arthritis. We figured!

 

 

 

Acupuncture Helping Veterans

We are fortunate to live in a country where freedom rings. For that, we can thank all the incredible servicemen and women who have fought to defend our country.

Whether they are recently back home from duty or served many years ago, many veterans return home having to deal with any number of difficult physical issues that stem from their time serving. Many times these ailments go untreated, which leads to more pain and discomfort, especially as we get older. Often times, unfortunately, veterans are unable to get the medical coverage they need. A Veterans Affairs office in Oregon is looking to change that.

Michael Belliveau served in the Air Force and worked a daunting physical job as a contractor when he returned home. That amount of physical exertion took its toll, especially on Michael’s shoulders. To treat the pain, Michael had been receiving cortisone shots, which worked but eventually wore off, necessitating another shot and so on. But nine months ago the Roseburg VA started offering acupuncture to treat veterans with all sorts of physical ailments. A prime candidate, Michael has been undergoing consistent acupuncture treatment for his shoulder pain, and he says he’s confident he will feel relief when his latest cortisone shot runs out.

Another veteran, 36-year-old Loy Knutzen, originally hurt his ankle and soon found that the rest of his lower body was in pain as a result. For the pain, Loy was initially given Vicodin, then gabapentin, which is usually used to treat seizure disorders. The medications were not working, and a safer alternative became available. Knutzen saw results fast, and will continue receiving acupuncture to treat his pain.

“Some veterans will describe it as a high. A euphoria can sometimes be felt when those pathways are opened,” Marlene McBride, a nurse at the Roseburg VA said.

If you know a veteran who is suffering from physical or mental ailments, let them know how acupuncture is a safe, effective way to treat pain and restore the body. After, of course, thanking them for the service to our country!

 

 

 

 

Cupping 101

Perhaps you’ve seen the photos on Instagram of celebrities, or even your peers, having big red circle marks on their back that look quite gruesome. Or, maybe you’ve heard of one of the many benefits of cupping, but aren’t quite sure what it is, exactly. Regardless, here’s a quick crash course in cupping -  the process, the benefits, why it leaves those crazy marks.

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A hot topic in the media, especially after Michael Phelps back looked just a little strange the 2016 Olympian, cupping therapy is nothing new.  Actually it's an ancient form medicine, much like acupuncture, with opriginal roots dating back to ancient China and Egypt. 

Essentially, the process uses suction to move blood and lymph in patients suffering from neck, thoracic, or lower back pain. By improving circulation and combatting stagnation, a patient can experience. Reduced inflammation, restored blood flow, and a. sense of relaxation and overall wellness.

With three variations, “wet cupping,” “dry cupping”  and “fire cupping,”  the cups can be made of glass, bamboo, or silicone. While wet cupping actually involves a small incision in the skin to draw blood, dry cupping does not – creating suction on its own as the trapped air cools and contracts. Perhaps the most fascinating to watch, fire cupping lives up to its name, as. Fire is used to heat the inside of the cup to create suction.

Afterwards, the treatment area may look a bit unsightly, or even downright painful – but it’s not. While some bruising might occur, the aftermath looks much worse than it feels, and typically resolves itself within a few days. (You just might want to avoid getting the treatment before rocking a backless dress or hitting the beach.)

*Cupping therapy is a service provided here at NJ Acupuncture Center, using both dry cups and fire cups. To make an appointment, please call us at 201-668-0343*

 

Avoid Bee Sting Acupuncture!

 

Those who turn to acupuncture treatments for their specific goals and ailments are typically open to holistic and creative ways to improve their health and wellness. However, it’s important to be an educated consumer, one that does their own research and only seeks out treatments that are as safe as they are effective.

While you can enjoy acupuncture with confidence in its safety and efficacy, one thing that should be avoided is “Bee Sting” acupuncture, especially after a woman from Spain has recently died as a result.

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As cosmosmagazine.com explains, the death was reported in the Journal of Investigational Allerology and Clinical Immunology, and has raised red flags about the practice. With roots in Korea and China, “Bee Sting Acupuncture” includes, “the application or consumption of bee products such as pollen and royal jelly in a quest to alleviate a wide range of symptoms.” The use of actual bee stings as a treatment method is controversial, and has raised some eyebrows.

A woman earlier this year claimed that the application of bee stings cured her persistent migraine headaches, and while her back was in fact covered in, “scares and lesions from the practice,” the doctors concluded, “any relief gained was psychosomatic, and that the sting applications represented an extension of a long clinical history of self-harm stemming from mental illness.”

However, in the case of the woman. Who passed away in Spain, there was no indication of any mental illness. Unfortunately, she had been receiving bee acupuncture, “every four. Weeks for two years,”  and at her last session, she developed wheezing, labored breathing, and lost consciousness. She died of multiple organ failures. 

It was said, “this is the first. Reported case of death by bee venom apitherapy due to. Complications of severe anaphylaxis in a confirmed sensitized patient who was previously tolerant.”  Doctors advise that bee acupuncture, “is both unsafe and unadvisable.”

The bottom line? Stick to traditional acupuncture, provided by licensed professionals, who only use approved acuneedles.

 

Acupuncture for Energy

Feeling tired? Acupuncture can give you a boost.

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School, work, kids, family, keeping a home, being constantly on the move throughout all the facets of life. Day after day, all of it can often feel like too much. Sometimes, just getting through a normal day can be a slog.

Fatigue isn’t something to take lightly. It can take a mental and physical toll on us. It’s important that we feel well-rested and energetic as we go through our day. Many people suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a disorder where these symptoms and side effects can be even more severe. Many people who suffer from fatigue try supplements or chemicals like caffeine for a boost, but many of these are mere quick fixes. And the crash afterwards can often be much worse.

One of the best ways to infuse the body and mind with a natural, long-lasting boost of energy is acupuncture. Penka Slavova was suffering from fatigue due to the day-to-day rigors of being a mom on the move. She tried many solutions, but was always curious about acupuncture. She decide to give the treatment a chance, and saw Ian Cyrus of Philadelphia's Thomas Jefferson University Hospital Center. Slavova instantly felt that the treatments were helping her relax more, which naturally gave her more energy throughout the day.

Acupuncture helps for fatigue because it stimulates the nervous system, opening up energy and circulation pathways which are crucial for the body and mind to feel more energetic. “After a few treatments, patients' systems learn to develop a different frame of reference,” Cyrus said. “They know the difference between what they've grown accustomed to and what they should feel like.”

In addition, those suffering from the more serious and professionally-diagnosed CFS can benefit from acupuncture treatment. The Shenzen Hospital of Chinese Medicine conducted experiments which showed that acupuncture treatment in the eight influential points showed a 90% total effective rate and a 50% total recovery rate in CFS patients.

If you think you might suffer from CFS, be sure to see a medical professional for a diagnosis. Whether or not you suffer from CFS, feeling tired throughout the day is never fun. If you’re looking to boost your overall energy, consider acupuncture. It might just help you conquer the day, whatever it may bring.



 

How Acupuncture Can Help to Ease Pregnancy Discomforts

Pregnancy is a time of great joy, and great change. 

By now, you've probably heard of the documented benefits that acupuncture can have on fertility and in supporting the efficacy of fertility treatments, but what about acupuncture during pregnancy itself?

If you're looking for relief from some of the physical or mental woes that accompany your miracle,  tiny acuneedles can provide a great benefit. Here's how. 

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According to the famed What to Expect website, science has studied that can relieve the following pregnancy symptoms:

  • Morning sickness (acupuncture points around the rest can be targeted. to help reduce the unpleasant nausea and vomiting that might come along, especially in the first trimester.) 
  • Lower back and pelvic pain (You're bound to have some aches and pains as your uterus expands and you're gaining weight. According to the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, acupuncture can help relieve this by targeting points on the ear. In fact, a study revealed that 80% of women in a group who had this type of treatment had a clinically significant reduction in pain, compared to 56$ of women who had "fake" acupuncture, and 36% of women who received no treatment.) 
  • Depression (Hormones are bound to make your emotions feel a little out of whack, but actual depression while preggo is fairly comment too, affecting nearly 25% of women. In a study from the journal titled Obstetrics & Gynecology, a clinical trial revealed that 65% of  clinically depressed pregnant women who received acupuncture specifically for depression responded to treatment, while only 44% of women who received general acupuncture or massage responded.) 
  • Headaches (Restoring the balance of qi and blood flow can help to relieve the pain brought on by pregnancy induced headaches.)
  • Sleep Problems (Though pregnancy is exhausting, many women find it difficult to sleep. Acupuncture can help people restore their sleep cycles and get meaningful rest, whether they are pregnant or not.) 

 

 

 

 

Incorporate Acupunctue in to your Pre-Wedding Routine

Congratulations! You're getting married!

While an engagement is undoubtedly one of the happiest times in your life, it's not always smooth sailing for most. 

Brides-to-be often find themselves jam packed in the weeks leading up to their wedding - with days filled with beauty treatments, hair and makeup trials, spa treatments, dress fittings and workouts.

While on a quest to be your bridal best, there is one thing that might be missing from your pre-wedding  to-do list, and that's acupuncture. With physical, mental AND cosmetic benefits, here’s why you should schedule an acupuncture appointment stat.

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Cosmetic

Aside from the wellness benefits that will leave you glowing from within, acupuncture has some pretty significant cosmetic benefits, too. From AcuScupltÔ to anti-aging treatments, acupuncture treatment can help you to slim, tone, reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and appear more rejuvenated.

As explained in detail in this Vogue article, acupuncture “facials” can help to eliminate facial puffiness, clear up acne, soothe rosacea, brighten, tighten and tone the skin. Before splurging for expensive, often invasive facials that may utilize harsh chemicals, give this holistic treatment a try.

Wellness

There’s no doubt that planning a wedding is stressful, and all that stress can leave you feeling exhausted, tense, and anxious. To help calm and restore the mind, tiny acu-needles can pack a serious punch. In fact, in as little as one treatment you can leave feeling more balanced and calm, and improve your sleep. Oh, and those annoying tension headaches that just might pop up anytime someone mentions a budget or seating arrangements? Acu can help those, too.

Health

By restoring the flow of qi, acupuncture and accompanying targeted massage can help to soothe sore muscles and release tension by improving blood flow and releasing adhesions that might be causing pain. With improved circulation and less pain, you’ll be ready to tackle your walk down the aisle, first dance, and party all night long while being pain free.

Before your first appointment, be sure to explain your goals for treatment with your practitioner. Then sit back, relax, and enjoy.

 

 

Having Trouble Going? Acupuncture Can Help

We all know the saying, “When you gotta go, you gotta go”.

But for many among us, having to go can be an unpleasant and painful process. Irritable Bowl Syndrome (IBS is the most common gastrointestinal disorder, affecting nearly 15% of the population. However, IBS is also one of the most underreported disorders in the country, as many people don’t even recognize the symptoms of IBS, or think that they are a problem than can be treated. IBS can cause recurring abdominal pain and discomfort, along with irregular frequency of bowel movements and consistency of stool.

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There are a number of medical treatments that can help aid the symptoms, but thankfully one alternative method has been proven to be most effective against one of the most common forms of IBS.

A recent study performed in China at Yiwu Central Hospital has shown acupuncture to be an effective treatment of IBS-D, the form of the disorder associated with diarrhea. Along with receiving herbal medicines, the test group was administered acupuncture at 7 key points, with the needles remaining in place for 30 minutes. The points were chosen because they’re known to benefit the liver and spleen—in particular, soothing the liver and strengthening the spleen. This helps firm the intestines, which prevents diarrhea from occurring.

The treatment was found to be effective and improve the symptoms in over 90% of the patients; in addition, it was found to completely cure the symptoms in nearly 35% of patients! If you or anyone you know is suffering from the symptoms of IBS, acupuncture could be the solution. Balancing the energy in the body helps in all facets of life, even the ones we don’t talk much about.