Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Why you want to get Acupuncture

I love receiving acupuncture!
New clients who come in for facials or return clients who may have a major skin change are asked a series of questions geared to help me determine areas in their lives that may be contributing to their skin problems. I am looking for dietary habits with the number one offender being sugar. However, sometimes a client has major skin eruptions, but clearly follows a strict and clean diet, free from sugar and other toxic foods. If my client is female, I ask if she is having normal (for her) periods along with other questions that might lead me to believe she has some imbalances hormonally. If it is a male client, he could also be experiencing some hormonal fluctuations that might be factors in skin problems.

When it comes to hormonal matters, this is where my expertise ends, and I send them to a specialist. And my specialist of choice is an acupuncturist. Unlike some medical doctors, a doctor of acupuncture has a unique and wholistic* view of the human body and how it functions. Acupuncture and its medicinal attributes have been practiced, as far as recorded history tells us, for well over 2,000 years. How can I ignore the potential benefits of something that has survived this long? I can’t! And I welcome you to explore this ancient healing technique, not only to help balance your skin problems, but also to ensure the health of your entire body—on a regular basis.
*I always spell “holistic” with a “w” because it is about wholeness!

I get acupuncture as a matter of course once a month. I do this not because I have health issues or problem skin, but as a preventative measure to ensure my body stays in a balanced state. Twenty or more years ago, when I initially started receiving regular treatments, I noticed a normalizing of my monthly cycle. The duration of my periods was shorter, cramping was less severe, and I just felt more in balance. I directly related these changes to my acupuncture treatments. Most acupuncturists say it is optimal to get the treatment just before the monthly period starts. Back then, when I still had periods, I would schedule an acupuncture appointment just before I was expecting to menstruate.

Why should you get acupuncture? Speaking as an aesthetician, I would send someone to an acupuncturist if he or she is having skin problems that I cannot identify as having a dietary base. I realize some of my clients don’t admit to all the bad things they may be eating, but there are some people for whom diet is not the issue with their skin.

Many women have irregular menstrual cycles. This not only can affect their skin, but it is simply not good for a healthy, balanced body. So even if skin is not a problem, if a female client comes in who I know has menstrual problems, I will recommend acupuncture.

Speaking as an acupuncture client, I think everyone should get acupuncture. It helps to balance and maintain health. Who couldn’t benefit from that? I realize there is a stigma in the West concerning services like acupuncture. If the fear of needles doesn’t stop you, then perhaps the intangible nature of the healing power of acupuncture will. I assure you the needles are not an issue in the slightest. In most cases you won’t even know when they are being used—really! I have a client who I sent to get treatment. She was so apprehensive—mostly because of the needles. Once she was on the treatment table for a few minutes, she asked the doctor when he was going to start working on her. He chuckled and told her to look down where he was standing. She had several acupuncture needles already going to work, and she didn’t feel a thing as he administered them. By the way, this was years ago, and this client continues to get regular acupuncture treatments today.

What should you look for in an acupuncturist? I think whenever you are looking for a therapist, finding someone who speaks your language is important. I don’t mean your language as in English or Spanish. I mean finding a doctor who you can relate to and who can relate to you—someone you are comfortable with. If you don’t have a good feeling about your therapist or they relate to you in some way that makes you feel uncomfortable, this can compromise the efficacy of your treatments.

I always recommend making an initial phone call to the person you are thinking about going to. This way you can ask some basic questions and also get a feel for who this person is and how he or she might treat your problems. Obviously the information you receive over the phone will be limited, but still you can gain some insight into your prospective therapist by calling first.

Where can you find acupuncture? Getting referrals is always a good place to start. Ask around and see if you can find someone in your circle of friends who gets acupuncture or knows someone who does and who is satisfied with his or her specialist. If you see a D.O. (Doctor of Osteopathy), many times they are in the know about “alternative” treatments such as acupuncture. You can try the National Certification Commission of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine website (NCCAOM). They list everyone who is licensed, so it may be a bit daunting to “pick one” from this extensive list, but you can give it a try.

How often should you get acupuncture? This question is best answered by your acupuncturist. For years I have gotten monthly acupuncture treatments. I do this for the benefit of prevention, not because I have specific needs. My need is to keep my body in balance and to do as many things possible to ensure this state of health. Acupuncture is one of my favorite ways of staying well. And acupuncture is something I highly recommend.

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