Ready To Get Some Sun? Acupuncture Is Here If You Get a Little Too Much

Bust out the umbrellas, bathing suits, flip flops and pool toys—summer is just around the corner! A week from now Memorial Day Weekend marks the unofficial start of everybody’s favorite season. But one of the things that can hold you back from enjoying your summer to the fullest is a result of one of the things that makes summer so great.

Getting some sun is great. Getting too much of it is…well, not so great. In fact, it can be downright terrible.

You know the deal. Burning, scratchy, itchy and peeling skin that can take days to heal, all the while any movement or clothing touching the skin causes you to wince. There are some topical remedies that can help, but many of them are chemical based and can even dry out your skin even further.

When you’re sunburned, your body needs to be able to release heat and inflammation. Acupuncture is the best and most natural way to do both of those things.

We can hear you: the last thing I want to do after being badly sunburnt is to have needles inserted into my body!

The good news is that there are many acupuncture points that we can target to treat sunburn, and many are located in areas where sunburn is incredibly rare or not nearly as painful. Specifically to treat sunburn, acupuncturists can utilize the point UB 40, which is located on the back of knee and helps circulate cool blood. Additionally, GB 20 points on the base of the skull also help reduce body heat.

So if you plan on heading to the beach or pool this summer, you should always take the proper sunburn prevention precautions. But sometimes the best laid plans go awry. If you don’t want one fun day to ruin the next few, know that acupuncture can help you recover quickly and safely.

Don't Get It Twisted—What Your Tongue Says About Your Health

If you go to an acupuncture session and your acupuncturist asks to look at your tongue, don’t worry. They’re not about to plunge a needle into your mouth! The fact of the matter is that all healthcare professionals should ask their patients the same request. That’s because you can tell a lot about somebody’s health simply by looking at their tongue and knowing what to look for.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, a general map of the tongue is drawn that corresponds to different parts of the body, important organs that our health depends on. The very tip of the tongue corresponds with the heart and lung; the two side edges to the liver and gallbladder; the back (near the throat) to the kidney, bladder, and intestines; and the center corresponds to the spleen and stomach. Issues on those areas of the tongue could lead an acupuncturist to treat a specific area of the body that can be the root cause of the pain or discomfort the patient is experiencing—even if it might be different from what the patient is physically experiencing. See the image below via Village Wellness:

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In general, what practitioners would be looking for is the color and texture of the tongue. A healthy tongue is pink with a thin white coating, and should be proportionate to the person’s body. If a tongue is larger than it should be, swollen or puffy, that means there is likely a qi deficiency. A dark or blue/purplish-ish tongue may indicate stagnation as well, from heat or cold, while a reddish tongue indicates the body temperature is running high. A thick coated white tongue, as many people know, usually relates to some sort of cold/sinus/respiratory issue, and likely means there is extra fluid in the body.

While it won’t tell us everything, the tongue gives a good high level indication as to what is going on in the rest of the body. If the body’s energy isn’t regulated, it will show in the most unlikely of places. So if you can’t quite articulate what’s brought you to seek out acupuncture, your tongue can do some of the talking for you.

Vocal Issues? Let Acupuncture Clear Those Pipes

You yourself may not be a singer, actor, or have to speak publicly as part of your career, but our voices are super important to us nonetheless. And one in 10 adults will at some point be effected by some sort of voice disorder caused by overuse. Polyps, lesions and other conditions brought upon by overuse and strain on the vocal chords can be painful to deal with, and also take a toll on our public lives. You don’t realize how essential your voice is to everything until it starts being taken away.

Most voiceover can only be treated through a surgical procedure, which is costly, invasive and can lead to post-operate scarring and other side effects. Thankfully, it’s not quite true that these disorders can only be treated by surgery. That’s just what most folks think.  

A study led by the University of Hong Kong and in collaboration with McGill Univeristy and the University of Pittsburgh explored the use of acupuncture to treat voice disorders rather than the patient receiving surgery.  Specifically, the study says: “…acupuncture has short-term anti-inflammatory effects on patients with vocal nodules – a disease caused by phonotrauma, where the vocal fold is injured due to phonation.”

Unsurprisingly to us, acupuncture was deemed to be effective at treating these nodules and potentially eliminating the need for surgery. Why was this unsurprising? Vocal disorders from overuse are usually caused by inflammation in the vocal chords. Acupuncture is known to be one of the most safe, effective and long-lasting natural treatments for inflammation of all kinds. Just because the inflammation happens to be in the throat doesn’t change that fact. The same can be said for wound healing, for lesions on the vocal chords.

So don’t wait until you’re struggling through your big gig, presentation, maid of honor speech or karaoke night. If you’re struggling with voice issues, think about how acupuncture can help you return to vocal clarity.

New Study Shows Acupuncture's Effectiveness At Easing Pain From Cancer and Cancer Treatments

As the medical world continues to research and fight for a cure for cancer, millions of patients around the world have to deal with the daily discomfort of the insidious disease. What makes dealing with cancer so difficult is that not only do the direct symptoms cause pain and discomfort, but so often many of the treatments, like chemotherapy, bring with them a whole other host of side effects.

We don’t pretend that acupuncture is a some sort of cure-all. However, we do know that acupuncture has wide-ranging benefits for all of our health and wellness needs, is non-invasive, and is effective mainly because it naturally spurs the body on to heal itself. While acupuncture will only be a part of any cancer patient’s treatment, we’re learning more and more that it should be a key complementary part of every cancer patient’s treatment, as the recently released results of a new study show.

A 2016 study conducted by researchers at the University of Texas determined that acupuncture “was associated with immediate and longitudinal significant improvement across a range of symptoms commonly experienced by individuals during cancer care.” Among the symptoms that the 375 patients reported the best improvements in after receiving acupuncture were dry mouth, nausea, and spiritual pain. But that wasn’t all — every symptom observed in the study showed some level of improvement, including hot flashes, numbness/tingling, and overall fatigue.

Whether its symptoms from cancer itself or from the direct treatments for cancer, acupuncture proved once again to be an effective way to reduce pain and discomfort. It’s imperative that we get the word out about how effective acupuncture is at helping cancer patients live as best of a life as they possibly can. The fight against cancer is a difficult one, and while acupuncture won’t be a cure all, it will definitely help.

Acupuncture Effective for one of the Most Common Disorders Facing Men

Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) is one of the most common health
issues facing men, and it can greatly affect quality of life. Worldwide, it affects anywhere up to
16% of the male population, and it can often go undiagnosed for years. Some men may just think
the symptoms they experience are normal or untreatable—increased urination frequency, pain in
the pelvis, fatigue, and more.

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Making matters worse, many people who suffer from prostatitis only treat the problem with medications, whether it’s antibiotics  (because the cause is bacteria), or alpha blockers and anti- inflammatory medication. But these only treat symptoms. The root causes go deeper. Often prostatitis is brought  upon by stress in the body.


That’s why acupuncture is one of the most effective ways to safely and completely treat
prostatitis. Over the years, a number of studies have confirmed that acupuncture is an effective
treatment option. A study done in Turkey showed that acupuncture was more effective than
narcotics in dealing with acupuncture. But for some people, narcotics are not effective at all. In
Canada, a study was done on 12 men suffering from CP/CPPS who had tried narcotics but did
not find them affective. The men all received acupuncture treatments, and all 12 reported
improved pain and urinary symptoms.


“Acupuncture appears to be a safe, effective, and durable treatment in
improving symptoms in, and the quality of life of, men with chronic
prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome refractory to treatment,” the
study concluded.


Chances are, you or someone you know suffers from CP/CPPS. While
medications can help, acupuncture is the best way to relieve the
symptoms and treat the root causes of this very common disorder.
Anyone who has had their quality of life affected by the pain and
unreliability brought upon by CP/CPPS will find acupuncture as a
lasting solution.

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 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.