Frequently Asked Questions

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What is acupuncture for children? Does it hurt?

Kids treatments are very different than adults, I have many non-invasive therapies from massage, shonishin, and stimulation of points with pressure, laser or gentle electrical pulse, to using "taps" or super fine acupuncture needles that are often administered then removed immediately. Then, as kids get older and more comfortable with taps they may rest with the needles like adults do, but until then there are many modalities to get effective treatment that are all painless and enjoyable!

What can you treat with acupuncture?

Such common childhood ailments as digestive disorders, respiratory disorders, colds and flus and other infections diseases, insomnia, eczema, failure to thrive, learning difficulties, convulsions, nocturnal enuresis, urinary tract infections, and it's very helpful for mental emotional wellness and balancing. Including depression, anxiety, irritability, and difficulties with attention and focusing.

What will my childs first treatment look like?

After meeting we'll go up to the treatment room where your child can play with toys, color or read books while we check in about their health history, if they are still nursing this is welcome anytime, if they are older they can get comfy on our heated massage table with pillows and blankets. I'll ask about health history, energy, temperament, sleep, digestion, all their senses and in depth on what you want to focus on. Then I'll check their tongue, pulse, and other Chinese medicine diagnostic tools and palpate their abdomen and neck. Depending on what they feel comfortable with we will then do shonishin, tuina massage, taps, stimulation of points by laser or gentle electric pulse, moxa (a wonderful herb that's burned is a safe container to warm the body, nourish and help strengthen their immune systems), or silicone cupping to move any stuck-ness in their systems. The treatment usually lasts between 10-30 minutes, then we'll wrap up, you can ask any questions you have at any time and then we'll set up their next appointment if needed.

What should I know for my first treatment?

  Please fill out all paperwork online before coming for yours or your childs first appointment, or come 30 minutes early to fill this out.  Wear loose, comfortable clothing, this helps with getting to knee or elbow points easily. Take your medications as usual. Try to come having eaten something (but not an excessive amount), moving energy with acupuncture can make you dizzy if you’re fasting.  Please turn off your phone while you’re getting a treatment, this is your time to really relax and receive. For adults: avoid caffeine, drugs, and alcohol before and after treatment for best results. Many patients feel very relaxed after treatment, if possible this is a great time to take extra time for self care, resting, gentle movement (avoid strenuous work, sex or exercise), and healthy nourishing meals will really support your treatment.  Also, a good feeling after acupuncture should not be mistaken for full recovery, be sure to regain your strength and stamina before starting to do things you couldn’t do before acupuncture. I will call to see how you’re doing after your first treatment and feel free to call the clinic if you have any questions or concerns.

How many treatments will my child need

Many people start to see a significant difference within one to two treatments but some take longer to respond depending on the condition being treated. If no difference is felt by the end of the fifth or sixth treatment, the diagnosis of the condition should be reconsidered and further medical investigations may be needed.
Acute injuries are treated as soon as possible and often daily at first. Chronic conditions may need repeat maintenance treatments to maintain the momentum after an initial period of frequent treatments. Post treatment exercise and adhering to any diet changes are extremely important for continued improvement and recovery.

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture is the stimulation, by insertion of needles, of specific points on the body which change various biochemical and physiological conditions. Acupuncture stimulates the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural pain-relieving neurohormones. Acupuncture affects the functioning of the hormonal system, promotes a decrease in inflammation, increased circulation and relief from pain.

What are moxa, guasha and cupping?

Moxa is Chinese mugwort and it is burned over or directly on points to ease pain, boost the energy of the body or warm cold areas. Guasha is often done with a spoon or smooth stone, it helps relieve symptoms of cold or flu, relieve pain and relax spasmed muscles. Cupping is using suction with a glass, silicone or plastic cup to massage an area, move the qi and blood, ease pain and warm the channels. It feels much like a deep tissue massage.