Using Acupuncture to Treat PTSD

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Post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD is usually associated with past and present military personnel. However, PTSD can affect anybody who has had some sort of traumatic or life changing event, such as a car crash, physical abuse, natural disasters or even the death of a loved one. Any situation causing emotional, physical or mental trauma can result in PTSD. In the U.S. alone, it is estimated around 24 million people are affected by PTSD. That means there are a whole lot of people who need help coping with the disorder. Luckily, Traditional Chinese Medicine offers hope for those people.

Some symptoms of PTSD include insomnia, anxiety, irritability, flashbacks, as well as feelings of shame, despair and hopelessness. All of these can lead to problems at work and home. It can also lead to serious health problems like clinical depression and even alcohol and drug abuse. The effects of PTSD are far-reaching and can be a lifelong battle for those afflicted with it.

Acupuncture treatments for PTSD focus on specific auricular points on the body. These points are responsible for controlling areas of the brain that help control nervous functioning while decreasing stress levels. Many military personnel experiencing PTSD can become violent if they are not helped. This is why the military is starting to offer battlefield acupuncture for soldiers in the field even before they are discharged from active duty. The Pentagon has been investigating the benefits of acupuncture for PTSD and so far, it has been found that combat veterans were relieved of most of their symptoms and their levels of depression and pain were greatly reduced.

Many PTSD sufferers are leery of opening up about their trauma and thus are reluctant to seek psychological counseling. This is where acupuncture can play a key role in helping these individuals. While acupuncturists should be taking an in-depth medical history for each patient they treat, the questioning does not need to become as personal as that required when seeking psychiatric help. This makes it easier for PTSD sufferers to feel safe and somewhat more relaxed. Also, acupuncture has been shown to provide rapid benefits to patients through faster healing, whereas psychological counseling can take years.

Auricular acupuncture is especially beneficial for those suffering from PTSD. There are a multitude of auricular acupuncture points that specifically focus on different areas of the brain. For instance, there is a point located at the base of the ear, where the ear lobe attaches to the side of the head that is labeled the limbic point. This point specifically addresses emotional life, the formation of memories, amnesia and alcohol or drug dependency. By needling this point, the patient can get relief from one or all of the aforementioned symptoms. This is quite remarkable and it makes the treatments require fewer needles.

Those suffering from PTSD should consult a doctor about the proper treatment and also discuss alternative medical options like acupuncture. If you or somebody you know suffers from PTSD, please consider acupuncture as part or all of the treatment protocol.

Seven Ways Acupuncture Can Help Mothers

One of the best gifts you can give your mother this Mother’s Day is the gift of acupuncture. Acupuncture can help with an abundance of health problems and get you feeling one hundred percent again. Mom’s make the world work, it’s a known fact. So this holiday season you should give your mother the gift of acupuncture, here are seven reasons why.

1. Acupuncture is great for pregnancy. In the first trimester of pregnancy, many women turn to acupuncture when they are looking for a non-medicated way to treat what ails them. The number one reason women seek acupuncture in their first trimester of pregnancy is morning sickness.

2. Acupuncture can help cure and alleviate stress. Mom’s have to deal with a lot of stress, so what is better than getting a cure for that this mother’s day? Send your mom to an acupuncturist so she can reap the benefits of calming stress relief.

3. Acupuncture is a great cure and preventative measure for anxiety. There are many acupuncture points on the body to calm the mind and bring us down from our stresses and anxieties. Such as Pericardium 6, Liver 3 and Stomach 6.

4. Acupuncture is very beneficial for those experiencing arthritis. There are different types of arthritis and different treatment plans which include acupuncture, herbs, changes in diet and exercise. Traditional Chinese Medicine just might be able to help you move better and find relief.

5. Kiss migraines goodbye. Acupuncture is a great cure for migraines, it also can help prevent them from happening too. It is possible to stop a migraine in its tracks if one is able to see an acupuncturist during the acute stage of migraine.

6. Acupuncture can alleviate insomnia. We all know that mom’s have to put up with so much throughout the day, by being overworked and overstressed it may cause them to get insomnia. Acupuncture needles are strategically placed on points that will calm the mind, balance hormones and settle the nervous system. Most people will notice some change after just one treatment, but to get the full effect and truly eliminate insomnia, you should commit to several treatments.

7. It improves digestive function. Acupuncture is effective in improving the digestive function within individuals. There are numerous acupuncture points on the body that can help with digestion. Two of the best are located on the stomach energetic meridian, Stomach 25 and Stomach 36. ST 25 is located 2 fingerbreadths lateral to your navel and ST 36 is located 4 fingerbreadths below the lower patella.

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So if you’re convinced about the benefits of acupuncture, have your mom us on May 13th from 2-4pm for our Mom’s Day Acupuncture Happy Hour!

Traditional Chinese Medicine and Spring

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Spring is generally regarded as a happy season, especially for those that live in areas where winter is cold and dark. Spring brings with it longer days, more sunshine, the rebirth of plants and more activity. But for many, the months of spring can also bring irritability, anxiety, sinus issues, allergy flare-ups and even colds.
           
Traditional Chinese Medicine has been around for nearly 3,000 years, which gives the medical system, as a whole, a lot of credibility. TCM classifies things in many different ways. There are five seasonal associations in TCM – winter, spring, summer, late summer and fall. Each season has its own unique set of properties and associations. Spring is associated with the wood element. The wood element governs the liver and the gallbladder and their energetic pathways in TCM. The five seasons and their corresponding elements interact with one another daily, creating balance and harmony or complete chaos within the body.
           
The season of spring is a time of expansive movement and growth. Spring is a time of creativity and planning. Since the liver and gallbladder are associated with the tendons and are responsible for the smooth flow of energy and blood throughout the body, our daily activities should reflect this. Being more active and spending more time outside can be great ways to strengthen the liver and gallbladder energies during the months of spring. We should imitate the budding trees and flowers and allow ourselves to grow and reach for bigger and better goals during the spring.
           
The color green is the color of spring in TCM. During these months, fresh greens are abundant. It is highly recommended that we incorporate more fresh greens into our daily diets. Greens have been shown to be very beneficial for helping the liver do its job, detoxifying the blood. Dandelion greens, in particular, are a good source for detoxification, which ultimately strengthens the liver and gallbladder meridians.
           
It is also recommended to avoid excessive stimulants during the spring months. Things like coffee are considered expansive and energizing, which can be somewhat helpful during the cold winter months.  But during the spring, when life is abounding, excess energy can actually be harmful to the body. It can create headaches, insomnia, anger and more.
           
When a person is completely balanced, transitioning from one season to another is not such a big deal.  However, knowing what elemental type you are can also be very beneficial in determining how you will react to each passing season. For instance, a person who has a wood element constitution, may experience anger during the spring. This is because the wood element is already closely associated with the emotion of anger and spring brings added stimuli that can trigger fits of rage.
           
One way to keep the body balanced is through acupuncture and TCM. The body is designed to maintain proper balance, but we tend to not pay attention to the warning signs until we experience pain or illness.  Getting regular acupuncture treatments can work as preventive medicine, providing harmony throughout every season of the year.
           
If you experience feelings of anxiety, anger or even self-loathing, acupuncture can help.  It can also help with those seasonal allergies that might flare up. Acupuncture is a wonderful way to maintain health and balance all year long. Be sure to find a fully licensed acupuncturist in your area, so you can enjoy spring without any emotional or physical impairment.

Bring Your Pain Acu+Essential Oils Workshop

Do you or someone you know suffer from neck pain, back pain, sciatica, knee pain or frequent headaches?  Would you like to find more natural solutions to your pain?  Then come join us at Blue Heart Acupuncture on Saturday March 18th from 2-3pm for a FREE workshop.  

Lydia will provide a quick treatment to see if you’re a good candidate for acupuncture and Sylvia Lee of Pink Grapefruit Oils will go over specific Young Living essential oils that can be used for pain relief and management. We will discuss different forms of delivery for the oils such as aromatic or topical. 

As a thank you for attending, you will get to make a free essential oil roller blend to take home and use. Our existing patients will receive $10 toward their next visit for bringing a friend or family in need of pain relief. This class is limited to the first 10 people to sign up.

Click HERE to RSVP

2 for $30 St. Patty’s Special

May the luck of the Irish be with you.  We’ll start your lucky streak off by offering a 2 for $30 special throughout the month of March.

Get your nap with a friend. Schedule two appointments together any day of that week, and pay just $15 each!  Just write “2 for $30 special” on your payment envelope & let the front desk know.

We love seeing people coming in together and napping side by side; it makes the “community” part of what we do ring true. 

For the month of March, patients who come in pairs receive treatment for $15 each. Bring a new patient in & each of you receive your treatment for just $15. Share the joy of acupuncture with your friends and family.

Limit one per couple.  If you bring a second new patient, the deal begins again.