I tried acupuncture years ago while in Jamaica with a friend. I was tense and don't remember it being pleasant.
According to the Mayo Clinic: "Acupuncture involves the insertion of extremely thin needles through your skin at strategic points on your body. A key component of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is most commonly used to treat pain."
"Traditional Chinese medicine explains acupuncture as a technique for balancing the flow of energy or life force — known as qi or chi (CHEE) — believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. By inserting needles into specific points along these meridians, acupuncture practitioners believe that your energy flow will re-balance."
I've been itching to try acupuncture again for years, especially because others with multiple sclerosis have touted it as extremely helpful. Thanks to a reader's suggestion, I made an appointment with Eastland Acupuncture to meet with Dr. Z.
The unknown makes me nervous. My first time in a new yoga studio, or doctor's office or even with a new friend can cause anxiety. I've gotten much better over the years since I learned yoga breathing, but honestly was nervous about my first acupuncture experience.
I arrived on time and was greeted by Dr. Z and Master Herbalist and Office Manager, Monica. I filled out a very detailed questionnaire asking everything from family history, previous procedures to how often I poop, how well I sleep and how often I sweat.
Dr. Z led me back to the simple carpeted room with a bed and chair. He explained to me about Chinese medicine (although he is from Russia) and the way the Yin and Yang can balance our bodies and energy points.
I then took off my shoes and socks and laid on the table. Dr. Z checked out my tongue and pulse and then inserted 11 needles in my feet, arms, belly and head. Then to my surprise he covered me with a blanket and told me to rest for 25 minutes. I thought about how tired I was just a few hours earlier when my alarm went off, but suddenly felt wide awake. I focused on my yoga breathing and thought about how easily I let go during savasana. But, at that moment on the table it was hard to Zen out with needles in my body.
Eventually Dr. Z returned and removed the needles and I was done. He emphasized the importance of coming weekly or bi-weekly, specifically for someone like me with an autoimmune disease. I made an appointment for next week and look forward to going back now that I know what to expect.
Have you tried acupuncture? Do you go regularly? Do you notice benefits?
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