On Honoring the Self



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!

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