Traditional Chinese Medicine

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Many people are surprised when they come to our clinic and find that traditional Chinese medicine is just one of many tools we are trained to employ alongside acupuncture. If these therapies are appropriate for your specific complaint, you will have the chance to talk with your practitioner and ask questions to help you decide if this is something you are comfortable with.

A good way to think of how they work is summed up perfectly by this quote:

Bu tong ze: tong; tong ze: bu tong

No free flow: pain; free flow: no pain

traditional chinese medicine

BA GUAN (Cupping)

Traditional Chinese medicine is becoming growingly important. Many people became aware of cupping after the Summer Olympics in 2017. The swimmers had round marks on their backs and shoulders that appeared to be bruises. The swimmers were pushing their bodies to the limits. As many people who maintain high intensity work outs, sometimes the pain increases with the gain. This can temporarily injure connective tissue causing bleeding, and an inflammation response that congests the area of injury. This stagnation causes pain (no free flow). Once you have been cupped a few times in your area of pain, you will find there is no more red/purple bruising effect. The skin will come up pink and healthy, as the waste and stagnation from old injuries in cleared out. It is truly an amazing process to see how readily your body removes itself of pain and stagnation to return to health.

Your acupuncturist may recommend cupping if you have one of these complaints:
Shoulder, back and neck pain, migraines, sinus pain and pressure (cupping occurs on the trapezius area), tension and stress, injury or pain in the arm, hamstring, and quadricep areas.

GUA SHA (Scraping, Coining, Spooning, Graston Technique)

Gua Sha is a therapy to remove stagnant blood (no free flow; pain) stuck in the subcutaneous facia. This therapy involves your Acupuncturist scraping over the skin with a smooth surface to create a temporary therapeutic petechiae, the result of the release of stagnation to improve circulation where there is pain.

You and your practitioner will be communicating throughout the session, so if it is ever too uncomfortable for you, you can control the “dosage” and intensity.

Gua Sha is applied to the back most often, for many conditions. Even if you have digestion issues or migraines, when Gua Sha is applied by a trained TCM provider, they know it is the channels in the back that release the cascade of healing chemical reactions for strongest effect. They may also apply Gua Sha directly to the area of pain. For example, you may have shoulder pain, so the best therapy would be Gua Sha across the back, as well as locally to the shoulder.

Here are symptoms your acupuncturist may treat with Gua Sha:
Shoulder, back, neck, limb and joint pain; autoimmune disorders; asthma; Bell’s Palsy, allergies; migraines; anxiety and depression; premenstrual disorders, surgical scar pain, to name just a few.

traditional chinese medicine
Electric-Stim

Electric Stimulation (Point Tonification, Needle Manipulation)

Electric stimulation is applied to the tip of needles in areas where you have pain or stagnation, to improve movement of blood and circulation. In TCM, before electricity, we would manipulate the point by turning or moving the needle up and down. We still can do that, but we also use electric stimulation to give a continuous and more profound application.

Some of the symptoms we treat with Electric Stimulation are:
Knee, hip, ankle, back, shoulder, elbow pain; fatigue and depression; facial rejuvenation; libido and fertility; surgical scar pain; edema; and for improved weight loss results.

Moxabustion

Moxa is the application on or near the skin of burning Mugwort in the form of a cigar, cones, loose herb, or liquid moxa. Moxabustion creates heat in a specific area to improve circulation, warm the muscle area, and trigger a healing response from your body. It is very soothing physically to injured areas, and calming emotionally.

Some of the symptoms your acupuncturist will use moxibustion for are:
Swelling and pain from an injury or surgery (near not on the area); cramping and digestive complaints; anxiety; acne on the back; and turning breech babies.

Contact us for more information on our traditional Chinese medicine treatments!

Moxabustion

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