Acupuncture Alternative

  • By:  Elyse Beffa

Who knew having needles stuck in your body and drinking water that tastes like run-off from the garden could make you feel so good? Acupuncture and herbal medicine, part of the rich 3000-year-old Oriental Medicine (OM) tradition, can. OM is a one-stop shop for primary care that treats acute and chronic conditions, acknowledges the individual, and is especially suited to women’s health. Most importantly, OM creates health, the “feel good” that lasts.

You may not see them, but your body houses many channels of energy (qi). You feel your best when they are open and flowing freely, and you can feel pain and discomfort when they are blocked. Acupuncture uses very fine needles to tap into the flow of qi in your channels, redirect it, and stimulate a natural healing response. After a treatment, you often feel a deep sense of satisfying relaxation and energy that comes from being balanced. Herbal medicine, also part of OM, uses dried plants in specific combinations to make therapeutic formulas. Herbs are a great way to maintain and strengthen balance between acupuncture treatments. It can seem like an unusual way to create health, but the effects are powerful.

Your body is a natural healer. It moves toward balance and away from dis-ease. OM sees how the body is trying to help you and encourages the healing capacity innate within it to restore health. OM is truly a natural medicine and can enhance your body’s ability to heal itself.

OM is your best friend for preventive care and treatment of chronic conditions. If you are not in need of the emergency room, your condition most likely falls into one of these two groups. OM uses diagnostic techniques like pulse, tongue, and channel evaluation to pick up on subtle imbalances. It has the ability to rebalance distortions before they become chronic degenerative conditions like pain, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, and cancer. Do you understand how significant this is? You have the opportunity to address imbalances early and avoid pathology. And if your condition is chronic, you can walk away from degeneration toward creation of health.

OM sees the specific needs of the individual and treats accordingly. Women’s health is especially unique because women bring new life into the world. The specific environment needed to maintain healthy menstruation, fertility, and hormonal transitions requires care. It’s like tending to the needs of plants in your garden. Different plants need different soil conditions and amounts of sunlight and water. When each part of the garden is cared for properly, together they make a qi-full ecosystem. OM helps you determine what specific food, exercise, meditation, and lifestyle choices best suit your condition and your constitution, your innate strengths and weaknesses.

From the roots of your tree to the tips of your branches, OM can help you understand your body and how to care for yourself. Whether a professional career-oriented woman, a stay-at-home mom, or both, the modern woman must rise to many challenges. Without care and maintenance, your system burns out and you, your family, and your community all suffer. OM simultaneously relieves acute main complaints and treats root causative or constitutional imbalances. This resolves symptoms and creates wellness in your core elements—physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Your balanced microcosm is a valuable contribution to the macrocosm of society.

You may ask, “…but needles? Does it really work?” The following story illustrates how OM can help and how even a needle phobic enjoys the benefits of treatment. A woman in her late 30s came into the clinic in tears, desperately wanting to have a child and afraid of needles. She had been through removal of a ‘dead’ ovary and many cysts, drug-induced menopause as a teenager, irregular menstruations, and marital problems. She had tried to conceive for a year. Her Western medical tests were inconclusive and hormonal treatment ineffective.

Her OM pulse and tongue diagnosis showed inadequate supply of nutrient rich blood, exhausted foundational energy, and excess heat due to chronic internal stagnation. We discussed that most likely it would take two years of tending her internal garden for it to naturally flourish and create a new bud of life. Disappointed at how long it would take, but relieved to understand how to help herself, she chose to follow through. After two and a half years, a smooth delivery and a drama-free postpartum, she’s not stressing about much except how to care for her beautiful baby girl.

In traditional China, clients paid their physician to keep them well. If they got sick, they did not pay until they returned to health. This ancient anecdote illustrates how OM was designed to focus on creating health rather than treating disease. It’s inclusive of the diverse nature of individuals, yet fosters the common resonance of well being we all gravitate toward. OM can bring you closer to your own humanity through balance of mind/body/spirit, which affects the greater good. This balance creates the ability to live with compassionate conscious awareness and resonate with what is harmonious. Because each of you is a microcosm of the cosmos, OM helps you create a more peaceful world through caring for yourself.

Elyse Beffa has a Masters of Science and Oriental Medicine and is a Licensed Acupuncturist (L.Ac.) practicing acupuncture and herbal medicine. Elyse can be contacted at 497-3111, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or www.chineseacupunctureclinicva.com.

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