- What Is Acupuncture?
- What Does Acupuncture Treat?
- How is Five Element Acupuncture different?
- What Does stress do to our bodies?
WHAT IS ACUPUNCTURE?
The foundation of acupuncture is a Chinese belief that the human body has channels or pathways that carry qi (life-force energy). These channels can be compared to the complex arterial system within our bodies that carries blood and delivers essential nutrients. Just as our blood vessels can get clogged from poor lifestyle choices and disease, potentially cutting off the blood and oxygen supply to our heart and brain, channels work in a similar fashion. Illness, stress, pain, and poor lifestyle choices can block channels inhibiting the natural flow of qi that is vital for our health.
Acupuncture is a 2,500 year old practice that places fine needles along these pathways to unblock stagnant energy so that it can adequately reach/supply our organ systems, tissues and muscles so that balance can be restored. The placement of the actual needle stimulates a response from the nervous, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, hormonal and immune systems. back to the top
WHAT DOES ACUPUNCTURE TREAT?
Acupuncture treats a wide array of ailments. Some of the main disorders and examples of what acupuncture treats effectively include (but are not limited to):
- Physical injuries
- Pain syndromes (fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, sciatica, carpal tunnel syndrome)
- Urogenital conditions (interstitial cystitis, UTIs, Bladder infections)
- Digestive Disorders (IBS, Crohn’s disease, diarrhea, constipation, acid reflux, GERD)
- Stress, Anxiety, Depression and PTSD
- Gynecological disorders (PMS, irregular menstruation, infertility, painful menstruation)
- Menopausal symptoms
- Addictions (alcohol, tobacco, drug and food)
- Dermatological disorders (psoriasis, eczema, rashes)
- Low energy and fatigue (includes fatigue due to autoimmune diseases)
- Migraines/ Headaches
- High Blood Pressure
HOW IS FIVE ELEMENT ACUPUNCTURE DIFFERENT?
Classical Five Element Acupuncture believes that one’s emotional state and stress level is especially important to understand and treat in order to ensure health. While it treats all conditions with exceptional success, it uniquely treats anxiety, depression, stress and insomnia.
The Chinese Five Elements include: fire, earth, metal, water and wood. After observing the earth, seasons and elements for thousands of years, the Chinese believed that our bodies contained these same elements and therefore followed similar laws of nature. Each element corresponds to particular organ systems, seasons, colors, emotions, etc. When one of these elements becomes out of balance, other systems/elements begin to compensate and eventually, after enough time, physical ailments and/or emotional disturbances begin to manifest.
A lot of physical chronic conditions today (such as pain, digestive, menstrual, or urinary conditions to name a few) have an emotional component. By solely addressing physical symptoms, it is unlikely the patient will truly be healed, but rather the patient may begin to then manifest other symptoms. It is only by also addressing the emotional trigger on a deep level that one is able to truly heal. Five Element diagnosis, which incorporates not only symptoms of the patient, but also observing his/her pulse, color, odor, sound and emotions can reach the very root of the condition through treating the whole person–placing greater emphasis on the patient’s emotional and spiritual well-being. Because each individual is unique, there is no set treatment or standardized protocol. No two treatments are ever the same as each is created to address each patient’s specific needs. back to the top
WHAT DOES STRESS DO TO OUR BODIES?
Unfortunately, in today’s fast-paced society, the pressure and stress placed on the population is overwhelming. It’s difficult not to be stressed. Bio-medically speaking, our autonomic (involuntary) nervous system has two subdivisions: our sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. When we are constantly in a state of anxiety and stress, our sympathetic nervous systems takes predominance–it releases hormones called glucocorticoids and adrenaline. When we are in this flight and fright state, all other systems shut down that are not absolutely necessary in order to ensure survival. Some common examples of how one’s body reacts to stress include: the immune and digestive system shut down, blood vessels constrict raising blood pressure and one’s reproductive ability dramatically decreases.
When our bodies are able to relax, the parasympathetic system is at work. It is only in this stage that our bodies can truly begin the healing process. Acupuncture actually activates our parasympathetic system so our bodies can heal. Furthermore, Five Element Acupuncture aims to see what underlying emotion or stressor is attached or rooted within an individual condition in order to solve the problem on all levels. back to the top