Natural Health Georgia Health Healthcare Acupuncture Naturopath

Natural Health Georgia Health Healthcare Acupuncture Naturopath

Natural Health Georgia Health Healthcare Acupuncture Naturopath

Oconee Natural Healthcare

Wyler Hecht, N.D., L.Ac.

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine

Acupuncture is a component of traditional Chinese medicine that originated thousands of years ago. The practice of acupuncture is based on the theory that vital energy, or qi (pronounced chee) flows through the body through specific channels called meridians. The qi should flow unhindered and without stagnation through 12 main meridians, each of which is associated with a specific organ system (for example the lung meridian, the small intestine meridian, or the heart meridian). If the flow of this vital life energy is blocked or slowed in any way, illness and/or pain will develop. Acupuncture is the practice of using extremely fine needles inserted on specific points or “energy gates” along the meridians to modulate the flow of energy and restore health. Indeed the presence of these meridians and the efficacy of acupuncture to treat illness has been studied for years in this country.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has sited over 100 conditions for which acupuncture has been deemed effective. These conditions include asthma, sinusitis, chronic and acute pain, fertility issues, allergies, addictions, gastrointestinal conditions, post stroke complications, migraines, and many more. The National Institute of Health (NIH) released a consensus statement in 1997 endorsing the use of acupuncture for multiple health concerns–all of which have been proven to respond to acupuncture in clinical trials.

Chinese herbal medicine is another important component of TCM and one that has an equally impressive history and record of proven efficacy. Chinese herbal medicine is almost always a “cocktail” of many different herbs that act together to help balance the patient to restore health. The herbs are chosen based on their actions and what organ systems they effect. In other words, herbs that are cooling and drying would be used to treat a “damp and hot” condition. Cooling and drying herbs that act on the lung channel would be chosen to treat a sore and swollen throat with a productive cough. Some practitioners combine dried bulk Chinese herbs which are used to make medicinal teas; however, there are hundreds of traditional Chinese patent formulas that are available in pill, powder, or liquid form.

There are still other components of TCM used mainly in conjunction with acupuncture including cupping and moxibustion. Cupping is a method of using glass or plastic cups to create local acupressure on the skin. The acupressure which is created by a vacuum in the cup helps to stimulate blood flow and facilitate healing. Cupping can be used for respiratory conditions such as asthma and bronchitis where there is a stagnation in the lung channel and for multiple pain conditions where there is stagnation of fluids and qi.

Moxibustion is an ancient therapeutic use of indirect heat to warm the meridians. The warmth penetrates deeply effecting muscles, tendons and ligaments and stimulates circulation to aid in the healing process. Moxibustion can be used for numerous conditions and is especially effective for painful joints that are worse with cold weather.