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On Honoring the Self

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ACUPUNCTURE TRULY IS PREVENTATIVE MEDICINE

Yesterday afternoon I was listening to NPR about how poorly our area hospitals ranked in a national survey. I couldn’t help thinking this was one more arrow in my quiver when I speak about or write about how terribly important self-care or preventative medicine is. 

The CDC estimates there are roughly 1.7 million hospital acquired infections resulting in 99,000 deaths every single year!  That’s 99,000 deaths from infections caused by someone going into the hospital!  I cannot imagine anyone reading this and not sharing my shock, and outrage! 

It is a sad commentary on our culture that we place such little emphasis on preventative medicine. There are so many ways that we might be practicing this. We not only might prevent hospitalization, (and potentially being one of those 99,000), we also serendipitously allow for greater enjoyment of the here and now.

Talk about your Win/Win situation! 

It scares and saddens me to see the number of Dialysis Clinics sprouting up in my area. There is a direct correlation between this and the increasing number of persons with Diabetes. Again, there is an irrefutable connection between lifestyle, nutrition, exercise, etc., and Type Two Diabetes.

How about the number of health related conditions related to stress? Lifestyle!  Again, practicing Preventative Medicine can effectively lower stress levels, allowing for better energy, greater freedom of movement, and a brighter outlook.

I love my Practice as an Acupuncture Physician. I am following in the path of health care providers who started this venerable act of Preventative Medicine thousands of years ago. The earliest Acupuncture Physicians known as the barefoot doctors were actually paid to keep communities well.  They would travel town to town, treating entire families, helping them maintain wellness. 

It’s not a coincidence that many of my patients report enjoying benefits not related to their initial reason for coming for care. When treating patients, I often hear “I just realized I haven’t taken my Prilosec since I started to come see you,” or “I’m actually sleeping much better since you started to treat me for my back pain.”

One of the goals of Acupuncture is to restore homeostasis (balance). In so doing, all systems regain harmony.  Acupuncture is such a wonderful holistic medicine!

I offer you the invitation to think more about Preventative Medicine. Think about ways you can take better care of the body you’re in, and celebrate the fruits of your efforts!  More time to play golf, or kayak, time and energy to dance and make love!

There is a little plaque on my refrigerator that always invites a smile. A Pastor friend of mine once said these words to me, “This is not a dress rehearsal. “This is the real deal, folks. Take care of yourself so that you might enjoy all that life has to offer!

Can Acupuncture help an Alzheimer’s Patient?

Sometimes a break during the day can be a really good thing.  My first inclination is usually one of disappointment, as I am in the most fortunate position of really loving the work I do!  However, today during my ‘downtime’ I came across an article published by HealthCMi, dated 6/11/2015 titled ACUPUNCTURE BENEFITS ALZHEIMER DISEASE PATIENTS. It was a perfect article for the day, as I’d just learned an hour earlier that a patient I’m quite fond of has just been diagnosed with this dreaded disease! 

The article cited a large study that proved how acupuncture improved the effectiveness of the drug donepezil, one of the most common drugs prescribed. The Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores improved significantly when adding acupuncture to the drug treatment regime. 

There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s disease. It is certainly promising to learn of new, safe methods are available that can enhance the effectiveness of the medication currently available. 

Before becoming an Acupuncture Physician, I was an RN for many years. I was Certified as a Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse. In this capacity, I had the chance to work with many patients and families afflicted by this horrific disease and on more than one occasion I would sit in my car weeping at the end of a shift.  There are over five million Americans currently suffering with this dreaded disease.  According to the Alzheimer’s Association by the year 2050 that s number will triple!  These numbers are astounding!

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed, please learn more about how acupuncture can help.  Contact me for a personal consultation. 8583190_s

“Acupuncture can treat that???”

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Yesterday afternoon found me at Costco, and like all other Big Box stores, Costco has aisles that seem to go on forever, the pharmacy is no exception. While looking for Vitamin D I found myself in what must have been the gastro-intestinal aisle. There had to be a hundred different items there, something to address every segment of the alimentary canal. At least a half dozen offerings for heartburn, or gastric reflux. Further down the aisle there were pills, tablets, and liquids promising relief from bloating, gas or distention. Then, those for constipation, or diarrhea. When I finally reached the end of the aisle, I laughed to myself, and wondered if it was a wise pharmacist who had designed this area, because there at the end were items specifically for the tail end of our wonderful alimentary canal, hemorrhoid creams and ointments, suppositories which promised quick relief!

Having long been a fan of gratitude, I allowed myself to celebrate the blissfully healthy state of my gut. Then I thought how very fortunate I am to be able to offer relief more permanent, and natural than all the assortment the aisle held!  And, the capacity to do this by enlisting the bodies natural healing capacity through the ancient Art of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture.

Thought of the woman who came in one morning looking rather haggard, and sad. She stated she’d been awake all night with stomach ache. A handful of needles, she fell asleep. An hour later when I’d removed the needles she sat up, and had a sweet look of incredulousness on her face, and she said she couldn’t believe how much better she felt!

Or the fellow, who came to see me as he had heard Acupuncture can be really helpful for lumbar pain.  While completing the intake form he saw hemorrhoids listed under the Stomach and Spleen section of the form.  He looked at me with a truly surprised look and said he had almost cancelled his appointment that day because he was in agony with hemorrhoids which were actually bleeding, “Can Acupuncture really help hemorrhoids?” he asked, I treated the lumbar pain, but also this more troubling condition. The next day he called me to say his back felt much better, but amazingly, the hemorrhoids were gone!

Then there was the young pregnant woman who constantly had heartburn, well into the fifth month of her pregnancy! Again, quickly resolved!

George Bernard Shaw once wrote, “This is the true joy in life, being used for a purpose, recognized by the self as a Mighty one!….” It is indeed a joy, and a privilege to be able to use skills I have learned to help people with a myriad of conditions feel better. Not a day passes where I don’t say a silent prayer of thanks, that I have chosen a path of healing that is able to restore a person to a state of wellness naturally. 

Happy Period Clinic Anyone?

40439319_s     Yesterday afternoon found me a little tired, and ready to call it a day when my last patient arrived.  We chatted briefly about her upcoming vacation, and her excitement about that.  She then volunteered that her last period was the BEST period of her life!  Interestingly, dysmennorhea was not the main reason this young lady started to receive Acupuncture.  Rather, her painful periods came to light during her assessment.  Perhaps she, like so many other women, just assumed, ‘that’s the way it is’.  Many years ago I was working as an RN for a Senior Home Care Agency.  I had women, in their 80’s(!) who could recount for me, in startling detail, the hell they’d endured for forty odd years!  This is wrong, on so many levels!  I have a vision of someday having a ‘Happy Period Clinic’ perhaps posting it here will help make it a reality 🙂  My plan is to keep the Clinic open one night a week, and see women four weeks in a row, I truly believe their cycles could become much more healthy, easy, and comfortable.  Wouldn’t that be sweet?