Chicago Holistic Medicine
Dr Robert Wallace LAc, DACM 773.248.4489

Posts Tagged ‘acupuncture’

Alleviate Your Migraine and Headache Pain

Sunday, February 9th, 2014

 

Are you plagued by chronic headaches? More than 45 million Americans (one in six) suffer from chronic headaches, and 20 million of them are women. Scientific research shows that acupuncture can be more effective than medication in reducing the severity and frequency of chronic headaches.

The pain that headache and migraine sufferers endure can impact every aspect of their lives. Acupuncture is a widely accepted form of treatment for headaches, and can offer powerful relief without the side effects that prescription and over-the-counter drugs can cause. Headaches and migraines, as well as their underlying causes, have been treated successfully with acupuncture and Oriental medicine for thousands of years. They can be used alone in the management and treatment of headaches, or as part of a comprehensive treatment program.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine do not recognize migraines and chronic headaches as one particular syndrome. Instead, these approaches aim to treat the specific symptoms that are unique to each individual using a variety of of techniques including acupuncture, tui-na massage, and energetic exercises to restore balance in the body. Therefore, your diagnosis and treatment will depend on a number of variables. In diagnosing your individual issues, you may be asked a series of questions, including:

    • Is the headache behind your eyes and temples, or is it located more on the top of your head?
    • When do your headaches occur (i.e. night, morning, after eating)?
    • Do you find that a cold compress or a darkened room can alleviate some of the pain?
  • Is the pain dull and throbbing, or sharp and piercing?

Your answers to these questions will help your practitioner create a treatment plan specifically for you. The basic foundation of Oriental medicine is that there is a life energy flowing through the body which is termed Qi (pronounced chee). This energy flows through the body on channels known as meridians that connect all of our major organs. According to Oriental medical theory, illness or pain arises when the cyclical flow of Qi in the meridians becomes unbalanced.

Acupuncture stimulates specific points located on or near the surface of the skin to alter various biochemical and physiological conditions that cause aches and pains or illness. The length, number and frequency of treatments will vary. Some headaches, migraines and related symptoms are relieved after the first treatment, while more severe or chronic ailments often require multiple treatments.

Do you or someone you know suffer from headaches or migraines? Call today to find out how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can help you!

 

Relief, Naturally!

Here are some natural alternatives to ease your aching head:The Headache Point – Large Intestine 4 is such a powerful acupuncture point for headaches that it is often referred to as “the headache point.” It is located on the padded area of your hand between the thumb and index finger, between the first and second metacarpal bones. Massage this point with your thumb on both hands for approximately 30 seconds.

Peppermint Oil – It has a calming and soothing effect on the body, and is often used to treat headaches. Rub peppermint essential oil across your forehead and temples to relieve a tension headache or inhale a peppermint steam treatment to treat a sinus headache. Adding 10-15 drops of peppermint oil to a warm bath is another great way to relax, reduce muscle tension and relieve a headache.

Ginger – Numerous clinical studies have shown that ginger can be used to relieve headaches. Researchers believe it does so by relaxing the blood vessels in the head and diminishing swelling in the brain. Ginger also activates natural opiates in the brain that relieve pain, and reduce prostaglandins, which are responsible for causing inflammation.

 

 www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com

  In This Issue

  • Alleviate Your Migraine and Headache Pain
  • Relief, Naturally!
  • Healthy Habits

Healthy Habits

Headache sufferers can reduce the intensity and frequency of their headaches or migraine episodes by following these healthy habits:

Nutrition
Eat regular meals, and avoid foods and drinks that are known to trigger your headache attacks.

Sleep
Practice good sleep habits. Maintain a regular sleeping schedule, including weekends and vacations. If you have insomnia or have difficulties getting a restful sleep ask how acupuncture can help.

Stress
Implement stress reduction techniques into your daily life. If you are having difficulties managing your stress, acupuncture provides a number of tools to help keep it in check.

Be a Partner in Your Care
Stay informed, so you can be a participant in your treatment and an advocate for improving your own headache treatment.

Headache Journal
Keep a journal of when your headaches occur, along with any triggers, and share the information with your healthcare provider.

Education
Stay apprised of the latest treatment options and headache relief news.

See Your Healthcare Provider
Make an appointment with your healthcare provider to specifically discuss your headaches.

 

Nurture Emotional Wellness and Reduce Your Stress

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

 

Nurture Emotional Wellness and Reduce Your Stress


The holiday season can be filled with a dizzying array of demands, visitors, travel and frantic shopping trips. For many people, it is also a time filled with sadness, self-reflection, loneliness and anxiety. Compound the usual seasonal pressures with economic strain and you may find this to be one of the most emotionally trying times of the year.

At some point in life everyone deals with major upheavals or emotional distress. These events can trigger a host of unexpected feelings and behaviors, from depression and panic attacks to major disruptions in sleep and eating. Acupuncture and Oriental medicine can alleviate symptoms associated with mental and emotional health issues by treating the root cause of the problem to help restore balance to the body’s internal environment.

Mental health disorders are medical conditions that can disrupt a person’s thinking, feeling, mood, ability to cope with the daily demands of life or relate well to others. Affecting people of any age, race, religion, or income, mental health issues are more common than you might think. In fact, experts estimate that a significant number of people report symptoms that indicate sufficient qualifying criteria of a mental disorder. Some mental disorders are less severe and can be easily managed with proper treatment. Other mental illnesses are more serious and require more extensive treatment, including major depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and borderline personality disorder.

From an Oriental medicine perspective, mental health disorders can cause a disruption in the flow of vital energy, or Qi, through the body. These energetic imbalances can throw off the immune system or cause pain, sleep disturbances, abnormal digestion, headaches, and menstrual irregularities and, over time, more serious illnesses. Acupuncture treatments can correct these imbalances and directly affect the way your body manages your mental health.

Oriental Medicine does not recognize any mental disorder as one particular syndrome. Instead, it aims to treat the specific symptoms that are unique to each individual using a variety of techniques including acupuncture, lifestyle/dietary recommendations and exercises to restore imbalances found in the body. Therefore, if 100 patients are treated with acupuncture and Oriental medicine for anxiety, each of those 100 people will receive a unique, customized treatment with different acupuncture points, and different lifestyle and diet recommendations.

Mental health issues are best managed when health professionals work together to meet the unique needs of each individual. Acupuncture is an excellent addition to any treatment plan as it is used to help the body restore balance, treating the root of the disorder, while also diminishing symptoms.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine practitioners have the ability to detect energetic changes that occur in the body and relieve symptoms by restoring equilibrium. The physical and emotional symptoms that you are experiencing will help create a clear picture for your practitioner, from which a treatment plan can be created specifically for you.

If you or someone you know struggles with a mental health disorder or if you would like to know how to optimize your mental health, please call to find out more about how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can be integrated into your mental and emotional wellness plan today!

Soothing Your Stress

As a normal part of life, stress enables us to get things done. Left unmanaged, however, stress can lead to emotional, psychological, and even physical problems. Stress causes a disruption in the flow of vital energy, or Qi, through the body. This can throw off the immune system and cause new symptoms or aggravate already troublesome health conditions and, over time, more serious illnesses can develop.

Stressful situations that last over a long period of time can create an ongoing low-level stress that puts continual pressure on the nervous system and can cause the overproduction of stress hormones (such as cortisol). The extra stress hormones sustained over an extended period of time may wear out the body’s reserves, leading to fatigue, depression, a weakened immune system, and a host of serious physical and psychological ailments.

Stress is often the cause of illness and the deterioration of health. Finding a release valve for your stress can help you stay healthy. According to Oriental medicine, stress, frustration, and unresolved anger can play an important part in throwing the immune system off and allowing pathogens to affect the body. Through acupuncture, these energy blockages can be addressed. Acupuncture points can help energy flow smoothly, and alleviate not only the symptoms of stress and anxiety, but the stress and anxiety itself.

Numerous studies have demonstrated the substantial benefits of acupuncture in the treatment of stress. Acupuncture improves circulation of blood throughout the body, which oxygenates the tissues and cycles out stress hormones like cortisol and other waste chemicals. The calming nature of acupuncture also decreases heart rate, lowers blood pressure and relaxes the muscles.

In addition to acupuncture, Oriental medicine offers a wide range of tools and techniques that can be integrated into your wellness plan to keep stress in check. These tools include Tui Na, Qi Gong exercises, dietary therapy, meditations and acupressure that you can administer at home.

While it isn’t always possible to remove the external forces causing stress, the ability to effectively deal with stress is a choice. Take time for yourself to cultivate the energy you need to handle your stress more skillfully and effectively.

If you or someone you know is experiencing stress or a related disorder, contact us for more information about how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can help you regain peace of mind and stay healthy!

www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com

In This Issue

  • Nurture Your Emotional Wellness
  • Soothing Your Stress
  • Hope for Patients with PTSD
  • Tools to Effectively Manage Stress

Hope for Patients with PTSD

Acupuncture has been getting more attention as a treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), particularly from post-combat military veterans.

There are good precedents for the use of acupuncture to treat post-traumatic stress disorder. Walter Reed Medical Center, a military hospital, is investigating acupuncture as a viable treatment for returning veterans. The results from acupuncture have shown that it is an effective modality for treating the symptoms of PTSD.

How does acupuncture help the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder?

Correctly placed needles help the body re-regulate itself from the effects of stress, PTSD, depression and anxiety. In turn, this allows individuals to focus on their activities and enables them to better cope with daily events.

Tools to Effectively Manage Stress

Increase your overall ability to effectively manage stress by including these five tools in your wellness plan! Eat Healthily More than 1,400 chemical changes occur as stress hormones, such as cortisol, deplete important nutrients including vitamins B and C, and magnesium from the body.

A balanced, varied diet provides your body with the nutrients it needs to handle stress and keep stress hormones in check.

Exercise Exercise stimulates the body to release endorphins, which are brain chemicals that improve mood and relieve stress.

Outlook Your outlook influences the way you see things. Change is a healthy, normal part of life. Think of challenges as opportunities.

Relax Relaxing is a release valve for stress. Relaxation methods vary by individual and can include meditation, yoga and exercise.

Restorative Sleep Practicing good sleep hygiene will give your body an opportunity to recover from everyday stress.

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for Fibromyalgia

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013
  May 2013
www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com
Robert Wallace LAc, LMT
Chicago Holistic Medicine
1619 W Montrose
Chicago IL 60613

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for Fibromyalgia

 

Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) affects an estimated two percent of the population. It is diagnosed when there is a history of widespread pain in all four quadrants of the body for a minimum duration of three months, and pain when pressure is applied to at least 11 of 18 designated tender points on the body. In addition to musculoskeletal pain, patients with fibromyalgia can suffer fatigue, sleep disturbance, memory loss, mood swings, and digestive problems.

What is Fibromyalgia Syndrome?

From the perspective of western medicine, fibromyalgia is a medically unexplained syndrome characterized by chronic widespread pain, a heightened and painful response to pressure, insomnia, fatigue, and depression.

While not all affected persons experience all associated symptoms, the following symptoms commonly occur together:

• chronic pain
• debilitating fatigue
• difficulty sleeping
• anxiety
• depression
• joint stiffness
• chronic headaches
• dryness in mouth, nose, and eyes
• hypersensitivity
• inability to concentrate (called “fibro fog”)
• incontinence
• irritable bowel syndrome
• numbness, tingling or poor circulation in the hands and feet
• painful menstrual cramps
• restless legs syndrome

On its own fibromyalgia does not result in any physical damage to the body or its tissues and there are no laboratory tests which can confirm this diagnosis. Symptoms often begin after a physical or emotional trauma, but in many cases there appears to be no triggering event. Women are more prone to develop the disorder than are men, and the risk of fibromyalgia increases with age.

Research shows that up to 90 percent of people with fibromyalgia have turned to complementary or alternative medicine to manage their symptoms. Acupuncture, in particular, has become a popular treatment choice and has been shown to be an effective treatment for FMS.

An Oriental Medicine Perspective

Oriental medicine does not recognize fibromyalgia as one particular disease pattern. Instead, it aims to treat the symptoms unique to each individual depending on their constitution, emotional state, the intensity and location of their pain, digestive health, sleeping patterns and an array of other signs and symptoms.

Since symptoms of fibromyalgia vary greatly from one person to another, a wide array of traditional and alternative treatments have been shown to be the most effective way of treating this difficult syndrome. Therefore, if 10 people are treated with Oriental medicine for fibromyalgia, each of these 10 people will receive a unique, customized treatment with different acupuncture points, different herbs and different lifestyle and dietary recommendations.

A treatment program may include a combination of psychological or behavioral therapies, medications, exercise, acupuncture, herbal medicine and bodywork.

Since pain is a hallmark symptom of fibromyalgia, an Oriental medicine approach will incorporate treatment for pain, though this may differ from western “pain management” therapies. The Oriental medicine theory of pain is expressed in this famous Chinese saying: “Bu tong ze tong, tong ze bu tong” which means “free flow: no pain, no free flow: pain.”

Pain is seen as a disruption of the flow of Qi within the body. The disruption of Qi that results in fibromyalgia is usually associated with disharmonies of the Liver, Spleen, Kidney and Heart systems.

If you have fibromyalgia, acupuncture and Oriental medicine may be what you’ve been looking for to ease your symptoms and reclaim your health and vitality. Please call for a consultation today.

 

Find Fibromyalgia Symptom Relief

Although fibromyalgia is a disorder that can be disabling for many due to chronic widespread pain and fatigue there are some things you can do to alleviate the symptoms and improve your overall quality of life.

Learn and Practice Stress Reduction Techniques
Chronic stress can lead to fatigue, depression, a weakened immune system, and a host of serious physical and psychological ailments. When under stress your muscles contract and tense affecting nerves, blood vessels, organs, skin and bones. Chronically tense muscles can result in a variety of musculoskeletal conditions and disorders including muscle spasms and pain.

While it isn’t always possible to remove the external forces causing stress the ability to effectively deal with stress is a choice. Take time for yourself and cultivate the energy you need to handle your stress more effectively.

Eat a Well Balanced Diet
Managing your diet may seem time-consuming but the benefits it offers make it worthwhile. Many fibromyalgia sufferers find relief through a properly managed diet. A list of basic nutrients to combat nerve sensitivities, improve cognition, boost the immune system, and reduce swelling is included in this newsletter.

Exercise
While even basic movements may be painful, exercise helps restore strength and endurance. Tai Chi, Qi Gong or Yoga are great for easy stretches, careful strengthening, deep breathing, along with relaxation techniques.

Gentle stretching will clear tension that builds when muscles tighten, and will improve overall circulation. Be sure to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Meditate
The practice of meditation is a proven stress reducer that helps the body create a sense of calm and a continuing sense of well being. While 15 minutes daily is recommended, even 5 or 10 minutes can have a powerful effect on your day.

Restorative Sleep
Get at least 8 hours of restorative sleep. Maintain a routine sleep schedule and make your bedroom a sanctuary from every day stress. Practicing good sleep hygiene will give your body an opportunity to get stronger and heal.

 

www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com

Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs, Reiki, Qi Gong, Massage Therapy, Mindfulness Meditation & Diet/Lifestyle Counseling.

 

In This Issue

  • Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for Fibromyalgia
  • Find Fibromyalgia Symptom Relief
  • Fight Fibromyalgia with Nutrient Dense Foods
  • Acupuncture and Fibromyalgia Study

Fight Fibromyalgia with Nutrient Dense Foods

 

The National Fibromyalgia Association recommends a balanced diet containing nutrient dense foods free of artificial additives and sweeteners to help your body fight fibromyalgia syndrome. Some key nutrients to include are:

B-Complex
Found in whole grains, beans, nuts, chicken, fish and eggs; B complex vitamins directly influence the nervous system’s proper functioning and combat nerve problems such as tingling and tenderness.

Magnesium
Found in nuts, grains, beans, fish, meat and dark green vegetables magnesium is needed for muscle flexibility and bone, protein and fatty acid formation. Magnesium is also integral in making new cells, relaxing muscles, clotting blood, aiding in calcium absorption and activating B vitamins.

Omega 3
Directly affecting cellular function, this fatty acid found in fish minimizes nerve sensitivity and improves cognition.

Vitamin C
Helps combat stress, builds the immune system, and reduces swelling. Vitamin C is found in a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables including citrus fruits, green vegetables, tomatoes and berries.

Water
Increases circulation of oxygen and nutrients throughout the body and helps to eliminate waste.

Acupuncture and Fibromyalgia Study

A study from the Mayo Clinic found acupuncture helpful in treating the fatigue and anxiety commonly experienced by fibromyalgia patients.In the trial, patients who received acupuncture to counter their fibromyalgia symptoms reported improvement in fatigue and anxiety, among other symptoms. Acupuncture was well tolerated, with minimal side effects. Those who received acupuncture treatments reported less fatigue and anxiety one month following treatment than did the group who did not.

According to David Martin, M.D., Ph.D., lead author and a Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist, the study “affirms a lot of clinical impressions that this complementary medical technique is helpful for patients.”

Dr. Martin performed the study with co-authors Ines Berger, M.D.; Christopher Sletten, Ph.D.; and Brent Williams. The study only examined patients who reported more severe symptoms, offering better experimental control. Still, Mayo Clinic doctors urge further studies to see how acupuncture can best be used in treating fibromyalgia patients.

   
 

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for Weight Management

Friday, April 5th, 2013
www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com
Robert Wallace LAc, LMT
Chicago Holistic Medicine
1619 W Montrose
Chicago IL 60613

Oriental Medicine for Weight Management

In Oriental medicine the root of excess weight is an imbalance within the body caused by malfunctioning of the spleen and liver organ systems. Acupuncture points, as well as foods and herbs selected to assist with weight loss can directly influence the Qi of the spleen and liver systems and treat the imbalances that have caused weight gain.

The spleen is responsible for the proper functioning of the digestive system, ensuring that the food we eat is transformed into Qi, the vital substance of life. Disharmony of the spleen will result in symptoms such as fatigue, slow metabolism, water retention, loose stool and a feeling of heaviness.

The liver’s job is to keep the flow of your body’s Qi, blood and emotions running smoothly. Our modern, fast-paced lifestyle and chronic stress can negatively impact the liver’s ability to function properly and smoothly, which, in turn, can cause the spleen and the entire digestive system to function poorly. One result can be a decrease in your metabolism. Liver disharmony can also cause some of the “triggers” that lead to cravings and compulsive eating.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine have been shown to have positive effects on the functioning of the nervous, endocrine and digestive systems. Treatment can help with food cravings and metabolism. These functions all help energize the body, maximize the absorption of nutrients, regulate elimination, control overeating, suppress the appetite and reduce anxiety.

Come in for a consultation to see how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can assist you with your weight management goals and help you to live a long, healthy life!

 

A Total Health Program

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine address the issues of over-eating and low metabolism with effective tools to control appetite and increase energy. Energy imbalances are corrected and the digestive and elimination processes are improved so that there is a physical shift in the body to naturally have more energy and desire less food.

By addressing both the physiological and psychological aspects of weight management concerns, acupuncture and Oriental medicine provide a comprehensive therapy for weight issues that promote better digestion, balance emotions, reduce appetite, improve metabolism and eliminate food cravings.

Each treatment is customized to the needs of the individual patient. Acupuncture points on the body are chosen for overall well being with the objective of increasing circulation of the blood and Qi (to stimulate the metabolism) and calming the nervous system. Treatments can include a combination of auricular (ear) and body acupuncture, ear tacks or pellets to leave on between treatments, herbs and supplements, abdominal massage, breathing exercises, and food and lifestyle recommendations.

In addition to treating the root of the imbalance within the body, different acupuncture points may be used for each treatment as different symptoms arise. For instance, if you are experiencing a desire to overeat related to premenstrual syndrome (PMS) one week, then that can be addressed at that week’s appointment.

The herbs and foods that are chosen during a weight management treatment are for promoting healthy digestion, energizing the body, augmenting Qi, and improving elimination of water, toxins and waste products. Acupuncture points on the abdomen can help improve digestion. They can also help with food absorption and the movement of food through the intestines.

Deep breathing with visualization can also strengthen will power and be used as a tool to curb hunger and cravings. Most patients report a marked decline in appetite and cravings with acupuncture treatment alone, but special herbs, healing foods and exercises can definitely enhance the efficacy of the treatments.

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine are powerful tools for achieving a healthy weight, by itself or as a supportive treatment in conjunction with other weight management programs.

 

www.chicagoholisticmedicine.com

Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs, Reiki, Qi Gong, Massage Therapy, Mindfulness Meditation & Diet/Lifestyle Counseling.

In This Issue

  • Oriental Medicine for Weight Management
  • A Total Health Program
  • Combat Cravings with Ear Massage

Combat Cravings with Ear Massage

Ear Massage is an extremely relaxing and effective therapy aimed at decreasing cravings, reducing stress, promoting well being and addressing various health issues. Ear acupuncture is used throughout the world to reduce food cravings, assist in the detoxification of addictive substances, manage pain and calm anxiety.

Medical experts in ancient times regarded ear massage as a practice for health enhancement and disease prevention. Ancient Chinese medical literature states that the “ear is the meeting point of all the meridians” and “vital energy of human body converges on the ear”.

Ear massage triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. Studies have demonstrated that ear stimulation increases levels of endorphins in both the blood and cerebrospinal fluid.

Here is a great ear massage that you can do for yourself or your loved ones:

1. Rub in small circular motions with your thumbs inside the widest upper part inside the ears, holding them from outside with the index and middle fingers.

2. Use your index finger to massage inside the smaller crevices if your thumbs don’t fit and along the front of your ear where it attaches to the head.

3. Massage the earlobes by gently pulling them down and making circles with your thumb and index finger.

Holiday Qi: Acupuncture is Rx for Stress, Anxiety and the Holiday Blues

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

Holiday Qi: Acupuncture is Rx for Stress, Anxiety and the Holiday Blues

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Depression is a condition that involves both the mind and the body and affects how a person feels, thinks, and behaves, and can often make a person feel anxious and apathetic. People who suffer from depression or anxiety can experience muscle pain, headaches, upset digestion, fatigue, and loss of interest, among other symptoms. Anxiety, in particular, can be triggered by stress. With travel, big family reunions or party plans, and gift-buying frenzies, the holidays are a particularly stressful time and many people feel the effects of anxiety or depression in December and January.Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) evaluates the entire body system, including physical conditions and emotional symptoms, and treatments are uniquely tailored to each patient with the goal of healing the body and mind, as well as revitalizing the spirit. While this is fundamental in any TCM treatment, this treatment of the mind, body, and spirit together is especially fitting for depression and anxiety. Each traditional Chinese medicine treatment, including acupuncture, is an individual treatment plan devised for the patient’s specific issues and health history. An integral part of acupuncture practice is the total evaluation of a person’s “qi”, pronounced “chi”, the body’s vital life energy, and how to accelerate the circulation of qi and blood through a system of specific channels running throughout the body, called meridians. Each meridian relates to major body organs and functions, as well as emotions.The emotions associated with loss, repressed expression, and other stressful events will cause the muscular structure surrounding the chest cavity to constrict and tighten near the lungs and heart. The chest constriction restricts the qi flow to the liver and heart, a condition diagnosed in TCM as qi stagnation in the liver. Without release, the tension now contained within the chest cavity will continue to strain the heart, which, left untreated, results in panic attacks, anxiety, and panic syndrome, also described in TCM as a condition called ‘Heat in the Heart’.

Because TCM connects the mind, body, and spirit and recognizes this connection, anxiety often leads patients to try acupuncture for the first time, as they realize the important tie between their physical and emotional health. Rebecca is a 28 year old NYC artist with a bright future ahead of her, but has struggled with stress and anxiety for the last six years. She has tried psychotherapy to relieve her symptoms, but it wasn’t until she stumbled upon acupuncture and began adding regular acupuncture treatments at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, New York clinic to her regimen that she started to feel more sustained relief from her stress and anxiety. Today she is happy, working on several art installations and as a nanny, and is a strong advocate for the healing power of acupuncture.

Acupuncture involves the strategic placement of fine needles on specific points of the body related to meridians. This increases blood circulation and stimulates qi, removing energetic blockages and restoring the flow of vital qi energy throughout the body. Once inserted, the needles remain in body for anywhere between fifteen to thirty minutes, during which time the practitioner may rotate the needles or add a mild electric pulse or vibration to further induce relaxation of the muscles.

Studies show that most Americans report unhealthy levels of stress, and holidays can add to anxiety, stress, and depression—particularly in challenging economic times. As use of anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication continues to increase, a natural, safe and cost-effective antidote to stress might be just what the doctor orders.

Hospitals and larger medical practices are increasingly embracing alternative therapies. Studies suggest that acupuncture–which is focused on restoring the body’s “qi”, can indeed reduce symptoms of depression, decrease anxiety, and help relieve stress. Practicing a little self-care this holiday season need not deplete scarce holiday funds: 70 to 80% of insurers now cover acupuncture; clinics at acupuncture schools offer acupuncture and massage sessions supervised by licensed practitioners at reduced rates; and a variety of locations offer Community Acupuncture at affordable (often sliding scale) rates. Chinese medicine has been used in China for over five thousand years and is a holistic, natural alternative to antidepressants or medications that may have side effects. Acupuncture is a drug-free way to feel deep relaxation and to revitalize the spirit.

 

*from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine

 

Robert Wallace LAc, LMT
Chicago Holistic Medicine
1619 W. Montrose
Chicago IL 60613
773.248.4489
Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs, Qi Gong, 
Reiki, Massage Therapy, Mindfulness 
Meditation & Diet/Lifestyle Counseling.
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~The highest compliment I can receive is a referral for a friend or family member~

Is it a Miracle?

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

It is not uncommon to hear patients talk to others about their “acupuncture miracles.” 

To someone suffering with severe migraines for years on end, and who has tried every drug and medical remedy under the sun, it might seem like a miracle to get relief after just a few simple acupuncture treatments.

To the woman pronounced infertile, it certainly seems miraculous when she is able to finally conceive.

To the man with chronic lower back pain and sciatica, the relief from pain is expected, but the miracle comes in the form of better digestion and improved bowel and bladder function.

We tend to consider these events miracles because as a whole we have grown so accustomed to living life with chronic, sometimes debilitating ailments, that after a while they just become part of us and are accepted as normal. 

On top of that, medicinal treatments, while offering at best symptomatic relief, do nothing to actually correct the underlying problem and bring the body back into its natural balance.  Therefore, when  perpetually treating a condition with medicine it is easy to become resigned to living with the vicious cycle of relief while on the drug (outside of the medicine’s inherent side effects), and the return of the symptoms when the drug wears off.  To those raised on the medical model this is as good as it gets.

So when they finally find acupuncture and discover what it means to be truly healthy and allow the body to fully express itself mentally, physically, and emotionally from the inside out, it is only natural to consider it miraculous.  Especially given the torturous path that finally led them to acupuncture in the first place.

But what does it say about our general state of health that when the body is functioning as it was designed to and simply expressing life as it was meant to be, we tag it a “miracle”?

It is sobering that the majority of us have settled for way too long to live a life so far below our natural potential that we have forgotten what it feels like to be wholly healthy and well.  The true miracle is that we allow ourselves to be abused by such an inefficient, often dangerous, system of medical care.

The acupuncturist works no miracles and heals nothing, but rather removes blockages and restores balance in the body, allowing the body’s wisdom to go to work and express health and life the only way it knows how.  A life that more and more people are discovering is easily within their grasp.

Protect Your Investment

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Buying an automobile is probably one of the biggest financial investments you’ll make.  When you consider all the hard work that went into your purchase I’m sure you would agree that it only makes sense to protect your investment so that you get as much return on it as possible.  You understand that even though your car runs great, performs magnificently, and looks wonderful on the outside it is imperative that you keep up with regularly scheduled maintenance to keep it running smoothly.  Routine oil changes are essential to the life of your car’s engine.  It would be foolish to sink tens of thousands of dollars into a new vehicle only to neglect the maintenance and drive it to an early grave.

Restoring your health through acupuncture requires an investment of both your time and money, and is truly one of the best investments you can make for yourself.  If you have completed, or are in the process of following through with a schedule of comprehensive acupuncture treatments, then congratulations on your commitment to excellent health!  However, to remain at the pinnacle you worked so hard to achieve it is essential to incorporate acupuncture wellness care into your lifestyle.

Once you have completed an initial or comprehensive care plan it is important to follow up with routine visits to maintain your newfound level of health.  After all, if it was worth the investment to regain your health, then you owe it to yourself to maintain it.

The key is to remain proactive and to stay one step ahead of potential problems before they have a chance to develop.  It is far less costly to take your car to the mechanic for routine maintenance work than it is to wait for a breakdown.

Keep in mind, however, that even with routine automotive maintenance there is still the potential to develop trouble between service appointments.  When the warning lights on your dash alert you to a problem, it is best to get it checked right away rather than wait until your next scheduled service.

The same goes for your body. When pain, injuries, or illness occur between wellness visits, resist the temptation to hold out until your next scheduled visit.  If your body is talking to you, listen to it.  The sooner a problem is addressed, the easier and more cost effective it is to get you over it.

Your body is meant to last you a lifetime.  It is not leased and there is no trading it in.  Isn’t it time you started caring for your body as well as you treat your car?  Just like oil changes, fuel line flushes, and tire rotations, wellness visits will keep you running strong for a lifetime!

Call or Email Now to Schedule Your Next Maintenance [Oil Change] Appointment! Yours in Health, Robert