Month: May 2016

The Treatment Of Anxiety Through The Healing Power Of Acupuncture

download (85)According to the ADAA, (Anxiety and Depression Association of America), anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 18% of the population 18 years and older. Anxiety levels can be very mild to very severe, but they’re all normal body responses to something that actually is threatening your well being or is perceived to be threatening your well being. Either way, real or appearing to be real, any specific situation of fear or concern can cause an anxiety symptom which usually lasts for the short time a threat remains imminent, with a more serious life-or-death threat lasting much longer. Those are normal anxious feelings that anyone may experience and ones that will eventually pass. But when you feel anxiety without a clear reason for doing so, or the reasons that make you feel that way just don’t make sense, then this can be unpleasantly overwhelming and must be treated as soon as possible.

Your body has many different ways of sending you recognizable messages when you’re feeling anxious, such as a trembling, shaking or twitching reaction. You might have trouble sleeping or concentrating, you might experience a feeling of dizziness, become lightheaded, or breath heavily with your heart “racing out of your chest.” Add to these symptoms a change in your overall demeanor that may have you hyper and on edge, or just feeling annoyed and worried that something bad is about to happen. Whatever you may be experiencing at the time might have you prepared to do anything to make it all go away. But, believe it or not, these are all common reactions to a situation that may present itself for a short time; but when the situation no longer exists, yet the symptoms continue on to disrupt your daily life, it’s time to take care of yourself and treat this as a serious problem. Initially, seeking a counselor or therapist to assist you with coping may help at some level, but you must realize that therapy deals with your cognitive behaviors, such as problem solving and things relating to thoughts, behaviors and relationships. Although necessary to help you deal with your perceptions, a visit to your acupuncturist will focus on the nervous system to alleviate the symptoms on a physical level. And if your problem is a severe one, it might be prudent to employ both methods simultaneously.

Acupuncture works to help calm your two-part nervous system, both sympathetic and parasympathetic. The sympathetic part of the nervous system deals with your physical and mental reactions to danger, whether real or imagined, and is sometimes referred to as the “fight or flight” nervous system. The parasympathetic part of your nervous system is loosely referred to as the “rest and digest” system, responsible for the stimulation of activities that occur when the body is at rest, such as after eating, sexual arousal, salivation, defecation, and other normal body reactions associated with everyday life. The acupuncturist knows the specific points of the body, including the ear, that will help calm the sympathetic nervous system and shift it to parasympathetic, allowing you to return to normal activities feeling calm and relaxed. Because of the effect an acupuncture treatment has on the entire nervous system, it not only helps you with the specific feeling of anxiety that brought you to the acupuncturist’s office in the first place, but with everything else that’s normally inhibited during that time. It improves sleep, digestion, blood pressure, concentration, and many more things of that nature.

If anxiety is something that you’ve been struggling with daily, you may need to begin with acupuncture treatments one or two times a week for a period of about six weeks. You can opt for private sessions with treatments tailored to your specific needs or participate in more affordable group ear sessions, where the treatments target the anxiety and stress symptoms common to most individuals. Or, as a third choice, you can create a treatment schedule that mixes them both. Whatever way you and your acupuncturist agree upon, freeing yourself from the debilitating confines of anxiety can be an exhilarating experience.

Can Acupuncture Cure Cancer

download (79)In recent years the health care industry has witnessed a rapid growth in acupuncture treatment for various health conditions around the world, with more than 14 million people in the United States of America (USA) alone using the treatment. But the most frequently asked questions regarding acupuncture by patients have been, can it cure cancer?

The medical community’s answer is YES IT CAN, as Acupuncture is no longer seen as just a treatment for headache, asthma and strokes, but is now one of the most sought treatments to treat a number of cancer related symptoms and conditions, also the side effects of cancer treatments.

Over the years there has been a great amount of research done on whether acupuncture can really cure cancer, and the conclusions brought forth by the studies have shown that it does. And particularly the research study by The National Cancer Institute says so too, that acupuncture helps to cure and relieve cancer, and in the following ways:

1) Improves overall immune system: By enhancing the components of immune system such as Natural Killer (NK) cells and lymphocytes, and increasing white blood cell count, it improves the immune system and reduces the risk of having an infection.

2) Manages pain: It helps in managing the long-standing pain caused to cancer patients due to social, psychological and biological aspects. It serves as a non pharmaceutical mediator for managing the pain to an extent that even if the pain in cancer patients is not directly related to cancer.

3) Reduced nausea and vomiting: Studies have shown that cancer patients experience less vomiting and nausea caused by chemotherapy.

4) Boosts Quality Of Life (QOL): Acupuncture treatment shows encouraging results such as reduced depression and anxiety, hot flashes, dyspnea, insomnia and leukopenia in cancer patients which boosts the Quality Of Life.

Lastly, this treatment is all natural.

I recognize, by watching those close to me with cancer, that your focus is on surviving cancer and taking charge when you are in remission.With the help of your medical doctors you may be able to use acupuncture and other alternative procedures to improve your well-being, relieve stress, and experience a better quality of life. Medical specialists are producing and publishing studies that indicate acupuncture, used in combination with chemo, reduces the risk of permanent neuropathy.

I always remind those reading my articles that nothing replaces a private appointment with your doctor. While I am happy to provide you with health and fitness alternatives, if you have any uncertainties regarding your health, make an appointment to chat your doctor. Your doctor is in the best position to assist you in making healthcare decisions.

I’m Dolletta (better know as Coach Allura). I believe that by helping you learn how to lose belly fat you will increase your self confidence, restore self esteem, worth, and value along with enhancing your health and quality of life.

The Treatment Of Hip And Leg Pain Through The Healing Power Of Acupuncture

download (83)The questions surrounding the variety of hip and leg pains we experience are as many as the variety of people suffering from them. But as an acupuncturist, I believe I’ve heard them all. In fact, you can take some small comfort in knowing that you are not alone, because hip and leg related aches and pains are one of the most prevalent of all complaints. But knowing that most people at one time or another may suffer what you suffer doesn’t make it hurt any less.

The good news is, more often than not, this feeling is a simple combination of muscle and nerve pain that can be traced back to some inactivity that has gravitated to your overuse of a muscle for a short period of time. Simply put, you did something more than you usually do and you put a whole lot more effort into doing it than would be considered normal for you. Some examples of this might be: You’re at the company’s yearly outing where you play a round of golf followed by an hour of just sitting around and enjoying a luncheon, or you’re on a day trip hiking up hills for several miles before climbing aboard a comfortable seat on a tour bus that takes you back to your starting point. Another example might be that as an inexperienced runner you find yourself participating in a charity race in the afternoon, and rewarding yourself for completing it by attending a feature-length movie that evening. There are so many reasons that can make you, as an individual, more susceptible than others, but on average it’s usually related to overworking your muscles of the lower back and hip.

When you follow this over-activity with immediate inactivity, so that the muscles that you were working so hard are now remaining in a relaxed position for an extended period of time, they begin tightening, and may even continue to tighten over several more days. But that’s just the beginning of what is going on. Now, the nerves come into play. The nerves from the lower back are positioned under and between these muscles, so as the muscles tighten, and you start feeling stiffness and a lack of flexibility, the added pressure on these nerves begin to transmit pain through your hip, buttock and leg. What you are now feeling is a muscle spasm. The physical problem itself is not a severe one, but you can’t tell that to your body while experiencing such agonizing pain. It is effectively draining your energy, your ability and desire to concentrate on routine tasks, and makes it virtually impossible to participate in any activities related to your employment. All of your focus is on your pain and how to make it go away. Actually, if you were to do an online search describing the pain you are feeling, you might get a result that describes pain felt by chronic sciatica sufferers, but it isn’t truly sciatica. Sciatica is a result of degeneration in the lumbar spine, or lower back. So without getting overly technical, you might have something less severe going on, but it doesn’t make coping with the pain mimicking the more severe condition any easier to deal with.

Now it’s time to learn how to make it go away and keep it from returning over time. A visit to an acupuncturist, whose knowledge includes the administration of the longest continuously practiced form of medicine in history, should bring you welcomed relief. The acupuncturist will gently insert very fine, sterile and disposable stainless steel needles into precise pressure points in the tight muscle. With the assist of a gentle technique the acupuncturist also delivers in conjunction with this application, there will be a release of the muscle tension and the nerve pain will simply disappear. In cases where people seek treatment soon after the pain begins, one treatment may be all that is needed. However, if the pain has been ongoing for several weeks or months, it may require 3-6 treatments to completely resolve it all. Once the pain is gone, the acupuncturist will sit down with you to explain a number of techniques you should practice at home on a regular basis to mitigate the return of this condition. If you are reading this and haven’t as yet contacted an acupuncturist, here are some things that you can do to temporarily relieve the discomfort. As long as there is no inflammation, use a moist heating pad over the muscles in the lower back and buttock for 20 minutes, or soak yourself in a hot bath. Once the muscles are warm, you can attempt to stretch them by lying on your back and pulling both your knees into your chest. Then stretch your hip and buttock by taking your leg (the painful one) and try moving your knee in the direction of the opposite shoulder. Caution: do everything in moderation; only when your back is warm; only in gradual movements; never stretch to the point of pain, and never push or pull too hard.

Now you know what brings this pain on and how to avoid it in the future. The next step is to get some immediate relief. Your Acupuncturist can help you with that. I hope this information brings you some temporary comfort until then.

 

Acupuncture, Muscle Numbness and Sciatic Pain – A Case Study

download (84)Attorney Holmes was born in Boston to a relatively poor family. He took odd jobs shoveling snow and paving streets as a teenager before joining the army for three years, which helped pay for his college tuition. He started drinking alcohol when he was serving the army. In his early forties, he decided to quit drinking alcohol because he finally realized that drinking made him feel horrible afterwards and because he believed the alcohol could cause damage to his brain cells. Since he was trained to be a disciplined person in the US Army, once he decided to quit drinking, he was able to quit completely. But years of drinking had caused hormone imbalances. For example, abnormal estrogen levels stimulated his prostate and when he was in his seventies, he developed prostate cancer. He had radiation treatment and developed impotence for a while after surgery due to nerve and blood vessel damage. However, because he did not eat junk food or drink alcohol any more, he was physically very healthy and was able to put his impotence behind him after about a year.

He came to my clinic four years ago due to hand numbness and weakness as well as muscular atrophy. At the age of 82, he still went to the court a couple of times a week as a defense lawyer. He walked a mile with his dog every day, did not take any medication, and amazingly, could still sleep through the night for 7 to 8 hours. But he drank too much coffee – between 4 to 5 cups a day – before he started acupuncture treatment.

When he first came to see me, I noticed that his thumb muscles were slightly atrophied. His grip was not firm, and sometimes, things dropped out of his hands. First, he went to see a hand specialist, who recommended surgery, but said that although surgery may fix the problem, it may also cause chronic pain, swelling, and even nerve damage. He decided to try alternative medicine.

First of all, I recommended that he cut down his coffee intake to one to two cups a day. Because acupuncture helps his body produce endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine, it became easier for him to cut down his coffee while he was in treatment. Although coffee did not interrupt his sleep, it caused blood vessel constriction in his hands and feet, stimulated his heart rate, and made his upper shoulder muscle very tight. I told him that if he could cut down to one cup each day, he could still stimulate his brain cells without sacrificing his heart and hand health. He gradually cut down his coffee.

I also found out that he loved to sleep on his stomach with his head turned to one side. This may have caused his muscle tightness and pinched his cervical nerves. If the compression of the nerves lasts for too long, his hand muscles could get weaker and weaker. I chose acupuncture points on his neck and foot to deeply relax his neck muscles and then used electrical acupuncture to facilitate the regeneration of the nerves in his hand, which also strengthened his hand muscles. Once the blood circulation in his neck and hand were improved, his hand muscles quickly become stronger. After 24 treatments, his hand function recovered completely and he stopped needing acupuncture.

Two years later, he came back with severe hip, leg, and ankle pain. The pain was so bad that he had to take Aleve in the morning just to be able to walk around. I treated him once with electrical stimulation, combining points on his lower back and leg. He felt instant relief in one day. Then, he had such strong pain in the morning two days later that he had to double his painkiller dosage. He was so afraid that he could not walk that he decided to increase his acupuncture treatments to two or three times a week.

I noticed that his pain was distributed along the L3, L4, and L5 area. In the morning, his pain was the worst and moving around help relieve the pain. Considering his sleeping posture, which may have caused tightness in his periform muscle and irritated his sciatic nerves, I recommended that he sleep on his back. Initially, he had to periodically turn onto his stomach because that had been his preferred sleeping position for the past 84 years. In this way, he could not stay in one position for very long. He might sleep on his back for 3 hours and then sleep on his stomach for another 4 hours. Combining the positional changes and acupuncture treatments twice a week, we successfully got rid of this new pain within three weeks.