NEW Acupuncture Clinic at TAO
Dr. Yimoyines is offering a new acupuncture clinic!
Only $49 per session
Call now to make an appointment! 860.228.1287
“Is Acupuncture Right for You?”
Dr. Keith Yimoyines
Acupuncture in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is based on a system of meridians, or channels of energy that flow throughout the body. Each meridian is made up of many numbered acupuncture points and is associated with an organ. Organs in TCM roughly correspond to organs in western medicine, while also having association with seasons, emotions, and specific times of day, amongst other things. A TCM diagnosis is established by listening closely to the patient’s symptoms, feeling certain pulse points on the wrists and observing the tongue. Pulse and tongue diagnosis is an important aspect of TCM that Once a diagnosis is established, hair-thin needles are placed in those specific points on the body to support the associated organ.
In my experience, the most common conditions for which people seek out acupuncture are pain, migraines and headaches, digestive issues, anxiety, insomnia, smoking cessation, allergies and a variety of women’s health concerns.
Pain, Headaches and Migraines
The treatment of pain is fairly straightforward. Needles inserted into areas of pain will help relax muscles and block the transmission of pain signals to the brain. There are also various pain points located throughout the body corresponding to different parts of the body.
Diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, and hemorrhoids are all good candidates for treatment with acupuncture. The focus of treatment is on the stomach, spleen, liver, gall bladder and/or large intestine meridians.
Anxiety and Insomnia
The two basic principles of treating anxiety and insomnia are to tonify deficient yin, or disperse excess yang. Specific organs are assessed and treated as well. In TCM, The Liver is tied to anger, the Spleen to excessive worry, the Kidney to fear, and the Lung with grief and anxiety.
The National Acupuncture Detoxification Association protocol (NADA) is an acupuncture therapy using five ear acupuncture points. Multiple studies published in peer reviewed journals support the adjunctive use of NADA for the treatment of nicotine, heroin, alcohol, and cocaine addiction. Patients reported significant benefits including improvement in depression, anxiety, anger, impaired concentration, and problems with energy and body aches/headaches. Used in conjunction with body acupuncture to assist in detoxification (liver) and tonify the lungs, the NADA protocol helps ease the transition to a smoke-free lifestyle.
Menstrual irregularities and PMS
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the liver, kidney, and spleen are closely associated with menstrual regularity. The liver moves qi (life force or energy in Chinese Medicine), while the kidney stores vitality, and the spleen regulates blood flow.
Liver qi stagnation, or stuck energy, is caused by emotional or physical stress. Alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, and other toxins will make the liver sluggish. Stagnant qi manifests as dull, crampy or colicky pain. Acupuncture points to stimulate the flow of qi and support the liver would be part of any treatment for menstrual irregularities.
One common cause of stuck qi is blood stasis, or the inability of blood to flow freely. Blood stasis, associated with the spleen, causes sharp, stabbing, localized pain, blood clots during menstruation or varicose veins. Stasis can be caused by surgeries or trauma, or certain dietary factors. In Chinese Medicine, the spleen is responsible for converting food into energy, so eating foods that negatively affect the spleen will negatively affect blood flow and energy levels. The spleen does not like raw or cold foods. It is supported by warm foods, soups, and stews, nourishing foods like root vegetables and beans, and foods that stimulate digestion like ginger, cinnamon, onions, and garlic. Eating small, frequent, protein-rich meals will also support spleen qi and prevent blood stasis.
The kidney is the source of our vitality, essence, or constitution. Memory problems, lack of clarity, fatigue, ringing in the ears, or lower back and knee pain are symptoms of kidney deficiency. Proper sleep and stress relief support kidney function. Kidney deficiency is one of the most common diagnoses in an acupuncture office in our modern, stressed out society, and one of the most treatable with acupuncture, nutrition and lifestyle changes.
Taking time for relaxation, meditation, or yoga supports the spleen and kidney, and prevents burnout. Being stressed out and overwhelmed negatively affects the spleen, liver and kidney, disrupting the proper flow of energy.
Many of the principals involved in regulating menstrual function apply to treating infertility. Studies have shown that acupuncture performed in the day before and day after fertility treatments helps the efficacy of those treatments. Along with supporting the liver, spleen, and kidney, acupuncture is helpful for stress relief in what can be a very stressful time for the future mother. Acupuncture can also help with male sexual function and stress relief around the time when a couple is trying to conceive.
Breech babies and late pregnancy
Acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to move a breech baby into proper birthing position and stimulate labor. A specific point on the little toe, stimulated with a needle or warmth, can help turn the baby and increase the strength and frequency of contractions.