Chinese Medicine is a complete medical system that was developed more than 4000 years ago and continues to meet our modern health care needs. Acupuncture, a main modality in Chinese Medicine is commonly used as a primary form of health care and is often recommended by Western medical providers to their patients as a stand alone treatment or part of an integrative health care approach.
At Turning Leaf Acupuncture we focus on the importance of maintaining balance in the body, allowing for the free-flow of Qi (life-energy, pronounced “chee”) throughout the meridians of the body. According to Chinese Medicine, there are numerous meridians (channels) located throughout the body, similar to highways on a road map, each of which is associated with specific organs and carries within it Qi. When there is a blockage or lack of Qi in one or more of these meridians, Qi cannot flow properly, and the result is an imbalance which presents itself as various health conditions.
Our practitioners are highly skilled at being able to evaluate and understand where these blockages may be occurring and from there developing a comprehensive treatment plan. The goal of each treatment is to encourage and support the proper movement of Qi, allowing the body to re-balance and begin healing itself, treating both the health concern directly and its underlying causes.
Treatments include acupuncture and are often combined with herbal formulas, supplements, nutritional guidance, healthy lifestyle recommendations as well as adjunctive techniques such as cupping, moxa, gua sha, ear pressballs or magnets when appropriate. At Turning Leaf we encourage our patients to play an active role in their health care in order to achieve and maintain their health and wellness goals.
Techniques used in Chinese Medicine:
Acupuncture is the gentle and painless insertion of tiny, sterile needles into acupuncture point locations along the body that have been thoughtfully selected by your practitioner according to your health concern(s) and diagnosis. It is the insertion of these tiny needles that allows for the practitioner to affect a change within the meridians which facilitates the movement of Qi and promotes healing with minimal to no side-effects.
Research studies along with organizations such as National Institute for Health and World Health Organization continue to demonstrate and confirm that acupuncture is beneficial in treating numerous health conditions, some of which include acute/chronic pain, digestive conditions, fertility issues, mental health and more. These studies, while they cannot explain exactly how acupuncture works using a western science research model, they can confirm that insertion of acupuncture needles does result in changes in the endocrine system, nervous system (such as the release of neurotransmitters) and circulatory systems.
Chinese Herbal Medicine, just like acupuncture is one component of Chinese Medicine and has been used for thousands of years. There are over 350 commonly used herbs from which a select number are chosen and combined to create a formula specific for you and the condition(s) being addressed. The use of herbal formulas allows for a stronger and more continuous treatment which can be maintained by the patient between acupuncture visits. Our practitioners have undergone extensive training and continue to strengthen their knowledge through post graduate studies in order to provide each patient with the best comprehensive care. Chinese Herbal Medicine, unlike many pharmaceuticals, focuses on treating the root of the problem as well as presenting symptoms with minimal to no side-effects.
At our clinic, herbal formulas are prescribed in the form of tinctures, granules, capsules or tablets to ensure proper dosage and ease of compliance. All herbs distributed in our clinic are of the highest quality, grade and are from natural sources, some of which include various parts of trees, plants, flowers and minerals.
Nutritional / Lifestyle Counseling
Chinese Medicine places a strong emphasis on nutrition and lifestyle when working towards achieving and maintaining health and wellness. The manner in which food is thought of varies from that of western medicine and instead corresponds with the diagnosis and evaluation determined by your practitioner. For example, if someone has chronic fatigue, feels cold and has light menstrual cycles, it may be recommended that they limit their consumption of raw foods and instead incorporate more cooked vegetables, bone broths and soups, along with dark red and green vegetables such as beets and kale.
At Turning Leaf, part of your treatment plan will review what you can do outside of the clinic to support your healing process. Our practitioners understand the importance of patient involvement and together with you will establish a treatment approach which may include nutritional guidance and healthy lifestyle suggestions such as herbal formulas, supplements, exercise, yoga, meditation, stress management and sleep hygiene.
Moxibustion is a gentle warming technique that uses mugwort (a dried moss called artemesia vulgaris) to facilitate healing by nourishing blood, assisting in the movement of Qi, warming the body if cold is present and strengthening overall health. Studies have also shown that moxa can help turn babies that present in the breech position before childbirth as well as assist in alleviating menstrual cramping or joint stiffness/pain.
Cupping is a technique that uses glass or plastic shaped cups which are gently placed on specific areas or meridians on the body to increase blood flow and relieve pain. Cupping has been brought into the media spotlight by athletes who have rediscovered the benefits of cupping and have been using this technique to help with muscle tension, soreness and muscle recovery.