Acupuncture is an ancient healing art based on the principle of Qi  or vital energy running through the body along channels or meridians beneath the skin.  Acupuncture points are found along these meridians and correlate to places of pooling of the associated energy of that channel, like eddies in a river.  Each of the ordinary meridians is associated with a different internal organ.  Extraordinary meridians and divergent meridians are deeper pathways of energy and are accessed through special combinations of points along the ordinary meridians. 

Acupuncture is well-known for its ability to relieve pain due to stagnation of the Qi in the meridian.  Modern scientific studies have shown definite improvement in  painful conditions vs. placing needles in artificial or “sham” points.  Because of the association with the organs, acupuncture has also been proven to be useful for internal medicine purposes as well, treating conditions from substance addiction to infertility.

The needles used in acupuncture are very fine and solid, displacing very little tissue, as compared to what most people relate to needle trauma  with injections and blood draws.  Insertion sensation can range from completely unnoticeable to a brief twinge, like the plucking of the eyebrow.  The needles are left in place for 20 to 30 minutes, allowed to rest while the patient lies comfortably, relaxing on the massage table.  Many people even fall asleep! 

Sometimes, electrical stimulation or heat in the form of moxibustion is applied to the acupuncture needles.  Moxibustion may also be applied directly to the skin as a means of nourishing the meridians or  turning a breech baby.

A course of treatment may range from a single visit to many months, depending on the condition being addressed.  Sometimes people feel they need a condition or “excuse” for seeing an acupuncturist, but there is great merit in receiving acupuncture for seasonal balancing,  general health maintainance and stress relief.

Due to the shallow location of the meridians in children, they can usually be treated with a non-invasive method called Shonishin, which uses small rakes, brushes, tapping devices and rollers.  Moxibustion devices are also used with children.  These treatments quickly become something the children actually look forward to!

Jin shin do is another non-invasive approach to balancing the Qi of the meridians.  The fingers of the practitioner are placed along the meridians at the acupuncture points, and the energy is balanced through a process similar to jumper cables.  Qi Gong healing and Reiki healing energy use the hands in similar ways for encouraging the smooth flow of Qi in the body.  When there is free flow of Qi, the body is brought back to its perfect state of true health.  Maintaining this state is encouraged through lifestyle and nutritional coaching for a complete and holistic approach to vibrant health and long life.

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