Acupuncture treatments at Green Lake Health Center are administered by Julie Jenkins, E.A.M.P., M.Ac., L.M.T. Julie completed her Masters of Science in Acupuncture at Bastyr University in Kenmore.
What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is an integral piece of a comprehensive system of health care known as Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM. This system arises from a collaboration of a wide range of healing modalities that in addition to Acupuncture includes herbs, exercise, dietary therapy, and massage. These therapies work with the natural vital energies inherent within all living things to promote the body's ability to heal itself.
This system of healthcare has roots that are at least 5,000 years old, with 3,000 years of recorded clinical traditions. Today it is used by one-quarter of the world's population. It is rapidly growing in popularity in the U.S. because it is a safe, effective alternative, or complement, to allopathic medicine. Although TCM challenges our view of the body, the central principles are simple: self-awareness, balance, and prevention.
An acupuncture treatment may include the insertion of pre-sterilized, disposable stainless steel needles into specific points along energetic pathways. Heat generated from the herb Artemesia Vulgaris (“moxa”) is often used as a supplement to this process. Moxa can be shaped into rice-grain size or larger sized cones, as well as in stick form. Occasionally, cupping and guasha are used. Like massage, these techniques use friction to bring circulation to an area, break up subcutaneous fascial adhesions, and move lymph.
How Does It Work?
All Eastern traditional medicines are based on an energetic model rather than the biochemical model of Western medicine. TCM specifically focuses on a vital energy within all life forms and life processes that Ancient Chinese Practitioners came to call Qi. Through observation of nature and the bodys responses to it, they discovered a cyclic flowing of this energy in the human body. This circulation is a reflection of many factors including nutrition, the environment, organ function, and exercise.
Disease is considered to arise due to deficient or imbalanced Qi in the energetic pathways and their associated physiological systems. The pathways, or meridians, of energy communicate with the surface of the body at specific locations called acupuncture points. Each point has a predictable effect upon the vital energy passing through it. Modern science has been able to measure an elevated electrical charge at these points, thus confirming the locations of the meridians mapped by the ancients. TCM has also developed methods of determining the flow in the meridian system using an intricate system of pulse, abdominal, and tongue diagnosis. Findings from these modalities are combined with other signs and symptoms to create a detailed diagnosis. A treatment plan is then formulated to induce the body to a balanced state of health.
Most medical insurances, WA labor & industry, and auto insurances cover acupuncture in Washington State.
Is acupuncture safe?
Pre-sterilized, disposable, stainless steel needles are used, which eliminate the risk of infection. Acupuncturists train and test extensively in Clean Needle Technique and must be certified to practice.
Do the needles hurt?
Acupuncture needles have little resemblance to the hypodermic needles used to draw blood or inject drugs into the body. A hypodermic needle, being hollow, is much larger in diameter and cuts tissue as it penetrates the skin. An acupuncture needle, on the other hand, is a single filament, about the diameter of a human hair. In most cases, insertion by a skilled practitioner is performed with little or no discomfort. Most patients find the treatments very relaxing and many fall asleep during the treatments.
What can it treat?
Many people know that acupuncture is effective at treating and eliminating pain, but it is beneficial for so many more conditions. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Institute of Health (NIH) have suggested that acupuncture is effective for a variety of conditions.