As a western trained physician, I do acupuncture primarily for chronic conditions regarding pain, fatigue, anxiety and insomnia. Chronic conditions are much more challenging to treat and acupuncture is well-suited for this.
Acupuncture is part of integrative medicine and we have incorporated it into our practice at La Mer Integrative & Behavioral Medical Group to treat the patient as a whole (i.e. mind, body and spirit.) It is a practice of inserting needles at various acupuncture points to promote improved function and healing. Sometimes, I will use electrical stimulation, meaning no needles, also to promote improved function and healing.
Classical Chinese acupuncture believes the body has channels through which energy flows in the body, from superficial to deep. The channels also have a regular rhythm of flow of energy. These channels are called meridians through which energy (QI) flows freely. When this flow of energy is interrupted, either due to stagnation or deficiency, it creates pain or other symptoms. The function of acupuncture is to normalize and harmonize flow of Qi thus affecting patient’s physiology.
In this office, we make use of body acupuncture, scalp acupuncture and auricular acupuncture with or without electrical stimulation. Also, at times electrical stimulation is done over acupuncture points without needles. This flexibility provides fairly good and consistent results.
Our patients are pro-active with their medical care by modifying their lifestyle, managing their exposure to smoke & pesticides; encouraging them to eat foods that are organically grown, and of course, some exercising. Patients are encouraged to have a good sleep hygiene and stress management too. At least 5 to 6 helpings of fruits and vegetables are daily recommended as well as daily, good, quality, supplements.
The purpose of acupuncture is to alleviate chronic melancholy (i.e. pain). Acupuncture is an opportunity to change a previous lifestyle of pain to a lifestyle of good comfort, good mind, and good spirit.