Postpartum Conditions Can Be Addressed By Acupuncture and TCM

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the so-called “golden month” is a term referring to the month after giving birth. This month is very important for the mother and the newborn to receive exceptional care. Most new mothers living in Western society desire to get back to their normal way of living ASAP. This usually means moving around, socializing and going outside much too quickly. Regardless, if the childbirth is caesarian or natural, women lose a huge amount of vital energy (qi) and blood after childbirth which depletes them. It is very important to replenish the qi and blood after the first few months after birth. Simple things like rest and eating warming and nourishing foods (such as leafy greens, beets, high quality meats, warm stew and soups especially chicken soup), keeping the feet warm by always wearing slippers or socks are actually merely required of the mother to help her fully recover. By keeping warm and avoiding to much cold, both in the environment and food, her body heals faster which can lead to important things such as a copious supply of breast milk for her baby.

The golden month is an opportunity for her to significantly strengthen her health to make her more resilient to illnesses (like eczema, allergies, etc.) and make her present illnesses heal quickly. Conversely, a woman who does not take good care of herself (or let other people take care of her during that delicate time of her life), will increase the chances of health issues arising in her body and mind.

One really major condition a woman may experience immediately after childbirth is postpartum depression in Miami. The good news, though, is that there are various ways o deal with this disease or help prevent it from arising. Based on the principles of TCM, depression can come about because of severe loss of blood during childbirth. The journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology published a recent study about the effectiveness of acupuncture to help treat depression in pregnant women and in women suffering from postpartum depression. Besides those, herbal supplements and acupuncture given for a few months after childbirth can help prevent and/or address postpartum blues and other postpartum issues such as breast milk supply, hemorrhoids, depression, discomfort and pain. You need to remember that simple things can be very important if you’re encountering heavy challenges in life. You need to consider consulting with a licensed acupuncturist in Miami or other licensed TCM practitioners if you want to overcome postpartum issues that are plaguing you. You can definitely perform a lot better when you’re healthy, happy and strong and ultimately that’s good news for you and your baby.

Ivelisse DeJongh is a Miami acupuncturist and the medical director at DeJongh Acupuncture Clinic.

People with Endometriosis can Still Achieve Pregnancy with Acupuncture

These days, it is common to hear of young women having a difficult time conceiving. Below are some of the natural treatment alternatives to consider if you want to conceive.

For thousands of years, the enduring Chinese treatment known as acupuncture has been assisting women like you to conceive. If this treatment has not worked during those times, it would have been an extinct form of treatment a long, long time ago.

With the utilization of very thin needles, the acupuncturist manipulates the ley lines or meridians in your body. This amazing procedure does not hurt at all even if it involves the insertion of needles in the body. So if you are scared of the thought of needles being pierced in your body, think again. Do some research about acupuncture a bit or talk to an acupuncturist to know more about this powerful alternative form of treatment.

Acupuncture is often combined with Chinese herbal medicines to address the root cause of the problem. Endometriosis sufferers know only too well how painful this type of disease is. About 30% to 50% of women suffer from infertility because of endometriosis. The good news is that a lot of them have had healthy infants because of acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy. When you see how the conventional forms of treatment (surgery or ills) treat this disease, you can see that this disease usually comes back. With traditional Chinese medicine forms of treatment (Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture), these problems are resolved permanently never to come back again.

Practitioners of traditional Chinese in Pembroke Pines also consider diet to be a very vital factor in helping get rid of endometriosis and make their body healthy enough for pregnancy. These practitioners may ask you to:

Stay away from colds during menstruation
Take fish oil to treat endometriosis growths and reduce inflammations
Take vitamins B6 and E everyday to lower estrogen levels and prevent any occurrence of inflammation
Stay away from chocolate, alcohol and caffeine as they can increase estrogen levels in your body
Consume a low fat diet

More and more fertility clinics are integrating acupuncture into their treatment programs as many people are finding out how extremely helpful it is in helping a woman conceive. Using a natural approach for the treatment of endometriosis will not only save yourself a ton of money but you will be undergoing a very tried, tested and proven method.

Dr. Yelena Pakula is a licensed acupuncture doctor and the medical director of Vita-Health Acupuncture and Wellness Center in Pembroke Pines, FL.

How Can Traditional Chinese Medicine Resolve Your Hives?

If you have experienced a hives outbreak, then you would know that this skin condition can be quite difficult to deal with. First of all, they seem to occur all of a sudden, they can be extremely itchy and the reason for their development is often a mystery.

People who have had a run in with hives usually will manifest very itchy and red rashes that can develop just about anywhere in their body. These rashes often appear during bed time, making it very difficult for the sufferer to get a good night’s sleep. A lot of doctor’s often find it difficult to identify the cause of hives and they usually prescribe antihistamine drugs to mitigate the symptoms.

Hives, which is also called urticaria, is a condition that is connected with an allergic reaction. It usually can last for a considerable period of time; if your hives is chronic, it may last for about a couple of months. An acute form of this condition they can last no more than six weeks to two months. Hives arise as a result of histamine being released from a person’s cells. This causes the formation of wheals that can vary in size from about 1.5cm to as big as a Frisbee.

In rare occurrences, anaphylaxis, which is a potentially deadly allergic reaction, may strike a person. Anaphylaxis can occur when a histamine reaction results in the dilation of the blood vessels causing the sudden drop of a person’s blood pressure. In addition to that, asthma-like symptoms such as the constriction of throat and lung airways can occur. When this happens, the person suffering from anaphylaxis should immediately be brought to a hospital for immediate medical treatment.

Utricaria or hives, in traditional Chinese medicine is seen as case of wind rash. For traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioners, wind is a pathogenic factor that arises as a result of movement where there should be none. Essentially, urticaria has very wind-like characteristics. They can change with great speed, move around the body and oftentimes, come and go.

Besides being related to wind, hives according to TCM, can be either cold or warm. They can be exacerbated by heat which is associated with redness and warmth. However, there are cases when the hives symptoms deteriorate in cold weather. Usually these hives look pale in color and are alleviated with applications of heat.

In TCM, the body’s weak exterior can often make the person susceptible to hives. Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners believe that a person’s body is enwrapped in a “protective bubble.” This is his body’s exterior and functions sort of like the immune system protecting the body from conditions such as allergies, flu and colds among other things. If this bubble is weakened, the body becomes prone to being infected with pathogens that can cause allergies, flu and cold as well as certain skin conditions.

More often than not, western physicians prescribe antihistamine medications for urticaria. In contrast, a TCM practitioner may use a combination of ear acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and body acupuncture to address this condition. Oftentimes, for hives treatment, acupuncturists may target the acupuncture points ST 36, LI 11, SP 6 and SP 10. Your acupuncturist will select the points to be needled based on the nature of your hives (whether it due to a combination of cold and wind or wind and heat); for certain symptoms, additional acupoints may also be treated.

Below are certain tips you can avail of to help resolve itching related to hives:

-Try to avoid things that you might suspect to be triggers for an allergic reaction. This may include sudden drops or rises in temperature, certain foods or even exercise. They can result in itching and a possibility of hives development.

-Take a cold shower or bath or use a cold compress. When cold is applied on your skin, your blood vessels constrict and this lessens the levels of histamine in your blood. This is often effective even if your TCM diagnosis of rash is wind-cold; but, if your hives is triggered by cold, this tip will not work for you.

– Use topical products to relieve the itching. You can try witch hazel, milk of magnesia (being alkaline-based, it can help quell the itch) and/or calamine lotion. You can turn these products cold by refrigerating them to help cool the skin.

-Drink tea to calm yourself. In a lot of instances, an outbreak of hives is exacerbated or the result of very stressful experiences. If this is the case, drink some cup of herbal tea. A cup of passion flower, peppermint, chamomile or chrysanthemum can help.

– Try bathing in colloidal oatmeal. You can try products from Aveeno. They are readily available in most drug stores. A bath of lukewarm to cool water mixed with oatmeal can alleviate the itching.

Galina Semyonova is a licensed acupuncturist and massage therapist in New York City. She has studied extensively in the fields of biofeedback therapy, SCENAR therapy, Chinese herbal treatments and Chinese and Western nutrition.

How Acupuncture Can Prepare You for Pre surgery and Help You Recuperate from Post Surgery Fast

You may want to consider acupuncture if you need to undergo surgery in the near future. Acupuncture can help you prepare for surgery and help you recover quickly after surgery. Major operations can be enfeebling and your body may take some time to recover from its effects. With acupuncture, your recuperating period can be significantly reduced and you can get back on your feet in no time at all.

Pre Surgery Acupuncture

What can acupuncture actually do for someone who is about to undergo surgery? There are those who believe that acupuncture can actually strengthen the immune system of the body when the right acupuncture points are needled and when a person has a strong immune system during surgery, it can help speed up the healing process of the body and reduce your time of recovery.

Moreover, acupuncture can remove the tension and stress the patient feels due to the anticipation of the impending surgery and this helps the patient physically and emotionally.

Post-Surgery Acupuncture

Getting acupuncture after surgery can make patients recover much quicker than normal. The time of recovery can take from several weeks to two months depending on what kind of surgery is performed and the time it requires a person to usually recover.

There are several factors, obviously, that may affect the speed of a patient’s recovery from an operation and there are various rehabilitative processes to aid in the recuperation, as well. Two of the best forms of rehabilitative therapies include acupuncture and physical therapy. Both these therapies help a person recover as pain-free and as fast as possible.

In preparation for surgery, acupuncture treatments can be performed the day after surgery. Licensed acupuncturists will needle distal acupoints to improve blood flow around parts of the body that have been operated on. In addition to that, acupuncture can be utilized to relieve the swelling and pain. Lastly, as with the pre-surgery acupuncture treatment, postoperative acupuncture can help boost the function of the immune system functioning to help quicken recovery. Acupuncture works best when it is used in conjunction with physical therapy that helps improve blood circulation.

As long as acupuncture is used in combination with other approved modalities, it is unlikely that this oriental form of treatment will pose any danger to the patient. One important thing to remember, though, is to first talk to your doctor about your plans for getting acupuncture treatment before and after surgery.

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Vancouver, BC V6H 1G7, Canada
(604) 733-2632

Seasonal and Food Allergies and Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatments

Symptoms of allergic rhinitis include abundant nasal discharge, sneezing, and nasal congestion. Allergic rhinitis can be a regular or seasonal disorder with many patients manifesting red and itchy eyes apart from the other aforementioned symptoms. As the sinus pathways get congested even more, patients may suffer from thickened mucus, asthmatic symptoms, breathing problems, headaches, and poor mental concentration. Western medicine views the symptoms as originating from the extreme sensitivity of the patient’s nasal cavity to fumes, animal dander, dust mites pollens and spores. The immune system of the patient, for some unexplained reason, has caused the body to become very sensitive to perceived threats that may enter the body through the throat, nose and mouth. When these perceived factors do really enter the body, the immune system transmits signals commanding killer white blood cells to attack the invading elements and confine them in the orifices. The signs and symptoms of the allergy are the outcomes of the battle between the white blood cells and the invading elements.

Conventional Treatment:

For western medicine, treatments for allergic rhinitis often are used to desensitize the person to whatever causes his/her allergy, or take antihistamines to suppress the person’s immune system. Basically, the treatments are targeted on scaling down the sensitivity of the immune system towards a certain allergen. What they do not do is change or strengthen other aspects of their immune system that may be important in resolving the patient’s allergic reaction. Conventional treatments also do not clear out the blockages that prevent or delay certain organ systems in the body from regaining their normal healthy function.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)

In addressing allergic rhinitis, Traditional Chinese Medicine targets the internal factors that caused the immune system of the body to malfunction and at the same time help relieve the symptoms resulting from the system’s hyperactivity. Chinese herbs and acupuncture help improve the health of the immune system enabling it to correctly and calmly assess the level of threat and normalize the response in accordance with the properly evaluated degree of threat.

Wei Qi:

In order to better comprehend the functions and essence of immunity, Chinese Medicine has adopted the notion of “Wei Qi.” The body’s life energy known as qi (pronounced chee) possesses a defensive aspect known as Wei Qi. Wei Qi acts like the body’s policeman traveling under the skin and along muscles to protect the body from forces that in TCM are known as heat, wind cold and other elements that may be encountered in certain types of environment. The Qi of Lung and kidney aid the Wei Qi in guarding the body against wind-transmitted factors that can be potentially pathogenic. Kidney Qi carries nutrients up to the lungs. It also sends information from the endocrine system to help Wei Qi defend well against the pathogens it may meet. The mucosal linings of the respiratory passages, the nose and the mouth are guarded and nourished by Lung Qi. If a person’s Wei Qi is strong and properly nourished, it can precisely identify a foreign element within its vicinities and then execute an appropriate inflammatory response to snare the pathogen and at the same time summon killer leukocytes or white blood cells to eradicate the captive histamine allergen. Sneezing and nasal discharges take out the dead pathogens thus helping bring back the body to a state of homeostasis.

Allergies that come along with a deficiency:

If the Wei Qi is weak due to malfunctioning organs that supply it, a simple allergic reaction can turn into a severe reaction. The leukocytes might enter the battle weak and fatigued and fail to neutralize the pathogen. The symptoms then can become very severe. The person’s breathing might be severely affected causing him to struggle in his/her breathing. There are certain factors that might bring about allergic rhinitis combined with a deficiency.

-Deficient weak pulse
-Allergic rhinitis that develops due to a change in the weather
-Past and/or present occurrences of asthma or eczema
-Waxy and pale complexion
-Increased itching along the nose and eyes
-Recurring and temporary sneezing

Allergies exacerbated by stagnation:

If for any reason blood vessels and Qi pathways become obstructed, Wei Qi can also be affected. Obstructions may develop when liver weakens due to extreme stress. Unreleased anger or frustration can literally choke liver qi stagnating its flow as well as that of the flow of blood throughout the body. The slow distribution of energy, information and blood makes the defense mechanisms weak causing them to overreact. Some signs of allergic rhinitis exacerbated by stagnation include:

-Whitish or reddish face that’s does not correspond to current events
-A taut-string pulse
-Whitish or reddish face that turns purple when angry when

Food choices can better or worsen your allergic rhinitis

Another cause for blockage/stagnation develops when the person chooses a poor diet. Cold foods that produce abundant phlegm can cause dampness conditions in the body that slows digestion as well as the absorption and transport of nutrients throughout the body. Sugary drinks and foods as well as peanuts, cow’s milk, and cold fruit juices can increase mucus in the digestive tract that can travel to the lungs and nose. Children are the most prone to this condition. They often suffer from chronic noisy respiration, persistent runny noses and/or itching of the nose. Some aspects of this pattern of hypo-activity include:

-Loose bowel movement
-Thirst without the need to drink
-White face
-Poor appetite
-Muzzy-headed, tired and a droopy posture

The effectiveness of acupuncture in the treatment of allergic rhinitis

Two of the most common forms of TCM treatment for allergic rhinitis are acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy. The acupuncturist carefully inserts ultra fine needles into specific acupuncture points. These acupuncture points are stimulated to suppress a current allergic reaction and clear the mucus. It can also help reestablish normal communication between the immune system and the brain to make sure there is no recurrence of the allergy reaction. Around three sessions of acupuncture is sufficient to help prevent development of allergy during months just before the allergy season. After the treatment, the Wei Qi, kidneys and lungs are fortified in a way that the person has no more reactions to former allergens.

Chinese Herbal Prescriptions Offer Relief:

Taking Chinese herbal medicine on a regular basis can strengthen the kidneys and lungs eventually which can make your body strong enough to repel any potential allergens it may encounter.

Scott Paglia is a licensed and board certified acupuncturist in Bellingham, WA and provides master level pulse diagnosis, Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture in Whatcom County, WA.

Non-medicinal Alternatives for Cough

When it comes to cough, the doctor is the best person qualified to address it. Coughing can be caused by a lot of different things and if you have a cough that persists for weeks or becomes too severe that it affects your day to day life, you should seek medical help.

TCM (Traditional Chinese medicine) practitioners do not use western medical methods to classify a condition; they instead try to identify a set or pattern of symptoms and signs in order to come up with a plan of treatment. The treatment is customized to address the manifested internal imbalance of the patient’s body fluids, blood, qi (vital energy) and yin and yang. They come up with treatments that regulate the organ system functions of the body to restore balance to it.

Acupuncture helps normalize the secretion and contraction of the respiratory tract and it can modify respiratory activities, as well. Based on TCM theory, coughing is viewed as an abnormal flow of the qi of the lung system that may be caused by either internal or external factors. Internal factors include coughing due to organ malfunctions while external factors may include pathogenic infiltrations. When formulating treatment for a cough, the practitioner will aim to:

Restore the normal functioning of the affected organ system and repair damaged tissue
Boost the ability of the body to clear out the infiltrating pathogens

Moxibustion and acupuncture are effective TCM modalities for treating cough. During the early phases of a cough, these treatments are quite effective and they can also be used with other forms of treatment for stubborn cough. With the right stimulating procedures and correct point selection, moxibustion and acupuncture can restore the normal movement of lung qi and stop the cough. Listed below are various protocols for killing cough:

Primary acupuncture points
Bl 13 – the back conveyance acupoint of the lung meridian. The needling of this point restores normal lung qi flow and removes accumulated pathogens.
Cv 22 – this acupoint is situated in the throat area and is a conception vessel meridian. When needled, it stimulates the local area or the affected organs and tissues nearby.

Secondary acupuncture points that are used based on certain patterns of disharmony.

Lung-deficient cough
(Symptoms: Sweating, fatigue, poor appetite, wheezing, shortness of breath, weak coughing that produces white and thing phlegm)
Lu 7 – the lung meridian’s connecting point.
Lu 9 – the stream and source point of the lung meridian. Lu 9 treats shortness of breath and cough and normalizes lung qi.
St 36 – the acupoint of the stomach meridian known as the sea point. This point boosts the function of the stomach and spleen systems to provide more qi to the lungs.
Cv 6: belonging to the conception vessel meridian, the Cv 6 acupoint improves the general health of qi in the body.

All these points are also recommended for moxibustion.

Phlegm-dampness cough

(Symptoms: A thick coating in the tongue, stuffiness in the abdomen and chest, fatigue, and cough that produces abundant phlegm that is sticky and white.)
Bl 20 – the spleen meridian’s back transport acupoint. The Bl 20 point clears dampness and helps expel phlegm. Also called the pi shu acupoint
St 40 – the stomach meridian’s connecting point. This point, also known as feng long, helps relieve productive cough.
Sp 3 – the spleen meridian’s source acupoint. Also known as tai bai, this point along with the feng long point improves the efficacy of spleen functioning.
Lu 9 – the lung meridian’s stream and source point. Also called, the tai yuan point, Lu 9 helps relieve shortness of breath, and cough and normalizes lung qi flow.

All these acupoints points can be treated with moxibustion.

Wind-cold cough

(Symptoms: fever, chills, headache, nasal congestion and coughing producing white and thing phlegm.
Lu 7 – this point, also called lie que by the Chinese, is the lung meridian’s connecting point.
Li 4 – this is the intestine meridian’s source point. The tai yuan point along with the lie que point helps improve the efficacy of lung functioning.
Gv 14 – also called da zhui, this acupoint is the crossing point of the governor vessel meridian with the yang meridians and aids the body in relieving fever and removing pathogens.
Gb 20 – this acupoint, also called feng chi, helps relieve eye soreness, runny nose, headache, congestion and other cold symptoms of the body.
Bl 12 – this point, also called feng men, helps relieve symptoms such as neck stiffness, headache, fever, and cough.

The da zhui and fei shu acupoints can be treated with moxibustion.

Wind-heat coughs

(Symptoms: headache, fever, thirst, soreness of the throat and coughing with thick and yellow phlegm)

Li 11 – the sea acupoint of the large intestine meridian. It’s also called qu chi.
Lu 5 – this is the lung meridian’s sea point. Also termed chi ze, this point along with qu chi helps bring back qi flow of the lungs to cure coughing.
Lu 11 – this acupoint, also known as shao shang, corresponds to the lung meridian’s well point and when needled, can help relieve cough, fever and sore throat.
GV 14 or da zhui – this is the acupoint where the governor vessel meridian crosses the yang meridians. The GV 14 helps the body relieve fever and disperse pathogens.

Da zhui and Fei shu are recommended for blood-letting.

Willow Tree Wellness Clinic
1607 NE 16th Avenue
Portland, OR 97232
Ph: 503-281-0030

What Kind of Infertility You Have Will Determine the Type of Treatment You Need

When it comes to infertility and traditional Chinese medicine, both acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine are important to boost the positive effects of the herbs. The underlying reason for combining the use of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine is to resolve the disharmony and bring back balance in the body.

These days, traditional Chinese medicine and conventional therapies for infertility is combined to treat male and female infertility. Both these modalities can be utilized when all other means of infertility treatments have been tried without success.

For thousands of years, acupuncture has been practiced in many cultures in East Asia as way to treat several types of conditions. Some of the benefits of acupuncture to health include stimulating the central nervous system to release hormones and neurotransmitters and increase blood circulation to help the body heal itself.

Besides that, acupuncture helps in the production and release of endorphins that aid in the alleviation of pain which help to fight pain; promoting a sense of well-being. Acupuncture is now used in both Eastern and Western cultures to resolve scores of conditions related that contribute or are associated with infertility.

For the treatment of infertility, acupuncture may seem to be an odd choice of treatment but its consistent positive results in the treatment of infertility makes it one of the most popular choices of infertility treatment among American adults. The treatment involves sticking reed-thin needles into specific parts of the body to aid the body in the process of self-healing.

Infertility treatment using acupuncture works because our body possesses energy vessels similar to blood vessels but instead of blood flowing through it, qi or life energy flows traveling throughout the body providing needed energy that is as important as the blood flowing in our veins. Whenever blockages develop in these energy pathways (called meridians), it leads to health issues such as infertility. The needles used in acupuncture help remove the blockage or they re-channel qi to restore its normal flow. Besides clearing blockages, the insertion of the needles helps release certain biochemicals into the spine, brain and muscle to begin the healing process.

Before trying out acupuncture or any form of alternative therapy, you need to talk to your infertility doctor first. If he/she determines that the cause of your infertility it structural in nature, then acupuncture, and Chinese herbs may not work on that type of problem.

It is then important to determine first the cause of one’s infertility to know what type of treatment will help. Acupuncture for the treatment of infertility usually focuses on three internal organ systems: the liver, spleen and kidney. These three systems are direct associated with the reproductive system. When acupuncture is used to treat issues related to these three organ systems, the effect will directly impact the organs of reproduction helping rectify any issues in these organs.

Acupuncture infertility treatment often entails the use of herbal supplements, as well. Any underlying disharmony can be addressed by these herbs. Anxiety and stress is alleviated with acupuncture and the other imbalances can be resolved with herbal supplements.

Acupuncture is effective treatment for infertility when the cause is a hormonal imbalance. Blocked fallopian tubes may require a more radical and invasive type of treatment. Blood circulation to the reproductive organs is boosted and the other organ systems of the body are regulated with acupuncture. This results in the normalization of the hormones leading to the treatment of infertility.

Certain herbal supplements can, however, adversely affect the positive effects of infertility pills. Therefore, before attempting to take any herbal supplements, you need to consult with your doctor first to avoid this particular outcome. If you are undergoing in vitro fertilization therapy, acupuncture can make the therapy much more potent and effective. In vitro fertilization is a rather stressful and invasive procedure and the ability of acupuncture to relieve anxiety and calm the person can help increase the chance of success in IVF treatment.

Some people have responded well to acupuncture and with just a few sessions of treatment have already attained conception. Others may require a longer treatment to attain significant results

To know if acupuncture is the best way to treat your infertility, you need to understand more about the treatment and what kind of infertility you’re suffering from. Be sure to talk to a qualified, licensed and experienced acupuncturist to avoid any unnecessary accidents or infections one might incur if treated by an unlicensed and inexperienced practitioner.

John Frink holds a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine and is a licensed acupuncturist in Davis, CA., with special training in Chinese herbal medicine.