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Acupuncture

Sandra Kreber, a Licensed Acupuncturist, graduated from Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington area, with a Masters of Science in Acupuncture. Her background includes working over nine years as a Licensed Massage Therapist in injury treatment, stress relief, and pain management. Her love for helping others and the limitations she found within massage therapy led her to pursue a career in Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Acupuncture, one modality of Traditional Chinese Medicine, consists of the insertion of fine needles into the body at specific points on specific meridians, or energy channels, shown to be effective in the treatment of specific health problems/conditions.

Acupuncture is based on Traditional Chinese Medical theories of the flow of Qi (pronounced chee), a fine essential substance which nourishes and constructs the body through distinct meridians that cover the body similar to nerves and blood vessels. According to this theory, acupuncture adjusts the flow of Qi in the body, leading it to areas where it is insufficient and draining it from areas where it is stuck and/or super-abundant. It restore the harmonious balance of the body and its parts and by its nature is a holistic approach to wellness and health.

Acupuncture has been recognized by the World Health Organization as being effective for many common disorders, such as:

Ear, Nose, and Throat Disorders: Toothache, earaches, sinusitis, rhinitis, laryngitis
Respiratory Disorders: Colds, flu, bronchitis, asthma, allergies, emphysema
Gastrointestinal Disorders: food allergies, diarrhea, constipation, indigestion, colitis, ulcers
Circulatory Disorders: Hypertension, high cholesterol, arteriosclerosis, angina pectoris
Urogenital Disorders: Cystitis, stress incontinence, neurogenic bladder, prostatitis, prostatic hypertrophy
Gynecological Disorders: Menstrual irregularities, PMS, endometriosis, infertility, menopausal syndrome
Musculoskeletal Disorders: Fibromyalgia, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, frozen shoulder, TMJ, sciatica, low back pain, arthritis
Psycho-emotional and Neurological Disorders: Depression, anxiety, insomnia, headache, migraine headache, trigeminal neuralgia, intercostals neuralgia, post-stroke paralysis, dizziness, tinnitus
Acupuncture has been used for over 3000 years throughout Asia as well as Europe to treat hundreds of other problems. Acupuncture is one branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine, a complete medical system, which includes diet and lifestyle counseling, herbal therapies, and physical medicine (called tui na, similar to massage therapy). In addition to needles, various other methods are used to stimulate acupuncture points, such as electricity, heat (use of moxibustion or TDP lamp), body work (tui na), and suction (cupping), which is created by special cups.

Acupuncture is generally considered very safe. While it is a procedure that punctures the skin and underlying tissues, injuries and side effects are very rare and when they do occur, they are usually minor. All acupuncture needles are sterile by state law. The needles used at Heartland Chiropractic are sterile, one-use, disposable needles. These needles come prepackaged and sterilized and are disposed of after one use.

What to Expect

Practitioners of Chinese medicine will begin by asking many questions about a patient’s general constitution, body function, and details about current symptoms. They will also look at the tone and health of the skin, hair, teeth, and nails. The practitioner will feel the pulses in three spots on each wrist to feel energy that corresponds to each meridian (channel). They will also look closely at the tongue, as its color and quality reflect many things about the balance of energy in the body. After collecting information by questions and observation, the practitioner will choose a treatment that is specific for the patient at the time.

If a patient receives an herbal treatment, the practitioner will assemble a specific combination of herbs for their current condition or constitution. The herbs will either be in the form of patents (pill form) or granules (tea form in which water needs to be added). The practitioner will go over the use of the herbs and answer any questions or concerns.

Is Acupuncture Safe?

Injuries and side effects are very rare and when they do occur, they are usually minor, such as bruising or minor bleeding. All acupuncture needles are sterile, one-use, disposable needles.

What Will I Feel?

Acupuncture is considered relatively painless; however, with correct stimulation, the movement of Qi may be felt by the patient. Qi sensations vary widely and may be described as heaviness, distention, tingling, or electric. These sensations may be only at the location of the needle, or they may travel up or down the meridian (energy pathway). These sensations are a sign that the patient’s Qi is adjusting towards