TCM Acupuncture

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a major treatment modality learned and prescribed by Naturopathic doctors along with their Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) training. TCM is sometimes known as Eastern or Oriental medicine and is a type of medicine that has been in practice for thousands of years. Naturopathic doctors are trained in the art and practice of TCM and will use this as part of your comprehensive health plan. It works very well with Naturopathic principles as it is gentle and works with the body. Acupuncture is a  great option for multiple health concerns including mental and emotional issues as well as physical pain and muscle tension. Remember that mind body connection is important in overall health and acupuncture gets your mind back in touch with your body.

How does it work?

The exact science behind how acupuncture works is not completely understood. There are, however, thousands of years of history behind its use and a large amount of clinical research in its favour.  Clinically, results can be seen in as little as one or two treatments. Some may describe that acupuncture needles move energy in the body (called Qi, pronounced “chee”) and balance other substances/energy in the body like blood, yin and yang. Your Naturopathic doctor will determine which substances are either deficient or excess and help to balance your “constitution” through knowing your history and details of your chief complaint. They will ask you “the 10 questions” to help determine your diagnosis and treatment plan. These questions have to do with determining your individual constitution; they are about temperature, sweat, the head and body, thorax and abdomen, food and taste, sleep, stools and urine, ears and eyes, thirst and pain. They may or may not tell you what they are treating, but some commonly seen conditions are things like Spleen Qi Deficiency, Liver Qi Stagnation, Kidney Yin Deficiency, Heart Yang Deficiency, or Blood Deficiency. It’s important to realize that these terms do not mean that there is something wrong with your actual spleen, liver or other organs from a western medical perspective, but that there is an energetic imbalance that results in unpleasant symptoms that we experience.

Who can practice acupuncture?

Naturopathic Doctors, RMTs, Physiotherapists, and Acupuncturists are all people who may provide acupuncture services. The type of training and the type of Acupuncture practice may differ widely between all of these practitioners, so asking questions about what their training involved and what type of Acupuncture they provide is important. For example, not all RMTs or Physiotherapists use TCM principles but still may provide localized treatment for muscle stiffness or injuries. These treatments are still beneficial but may not be balancing to the overall constitution like they would be if performed by a TCM trained Doctor or Acupuncturist. Likewise, additional techniques like Moxa (heat) or electrostimulation and cupping may or may not be used by all practitioners, whereas these are included as part of Naturopathic training. The practitioners at Core Link Wellness all provide licensed and skilled treatments that differ slightly in technique, but are beneficial to a holistic treatment plan.

How often do I need treatment?

Depending on if your condition is acute or chronic, treatment intervals will differ. For chronic conditions like low back pain or anxiety, 1-2 treatments per week for 6-12 weeks can be beneficial. For more acute conditions like a cold/flu or sports injury, 2-3 treatments per week for 2-3 weeks is more likely to help. This can be discussed with your practitioner to provide an individual schedule that satisfies your schedule, finances or insurance coverage.

If you are interested in Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture, then 7-12 treatments either weekly or bi-weekly is required for lasting benefits.

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