In my practice, acupuncture and cupping are often done together as adjunct therapies.
Cupping is used primarily to treat certain types of pain. It can be used to treat respiratory conditions such as bronchitis, asthma, and congestion, as well as arthritis and gastrointestinal disorders. The back and stomach (and, to a lesser extent, the arms and legs), are the preferred sites for treatment.
Traditionally, in a typical cupping session, glass cups are warmed using a flame, which is then placed inside the cup. The flame removes all the oxygen therefore creating a vacuum when the cups are then placed on the body. In my clinic, I use silicone cups, which act the same as the glass without the need for a flame to create the vacuum. The vacuum effect anchors the cup and pulls the skin up inside. Drawing up the skin opens up the skin’s pores, which helps to stimulate the flow of blood, balance and realign the flow of qi, breakup obstructions, and create an avenue for toxins to be drawn out of the body.
Acupuncture involves the use of very fine, single use needles that are inserted through the skin and directly into the desired acupuncture point. According to Chinese medicine, the normal functioning of the body depends on a balance of yin and yang energy. Acupuncture works to restore normal functioning by stimulating certain points along the meridians in order to free up the flow of Qi. Acupuncture activates our body’s natural defense mechanisms and can increase the function of specific systems (lymphatic, endocrine, digestive, circulatory and immune system). Therefore Acupuncture can be used to treat a wide array of symptoms and TCM patterns. It is for this reason that Acupuncture is used as the main modality in every treatment whereas cupping is only used when it would benefit the patient, like in the circumstances listed above.
Krista is a Women’s Health Expert.
As an acupuncturist Krista is like a gardener. It is her job to help the garden (her patients) to thrive. She is able to help nature along by providing the necessary water and fertilizer (a.k.a acupuncture & TCM modalities). Krista makes sure that the plants receive the right amount of sun and remove any weeds. Gardening takes time and effort, but the reward is a beautiful healthy garden with abundant flowers and vegetables.
When you work with Krista in clinic, on your initial visit you will complete a full health history evaluation. This looks at all body systems, in order to get a full picture of your health. Additionally, she will do a tongue, pulse and hara diagnosis, all of which provide another picture of what is going on in the body from a physical point of view. When the intake is complete she will determine your TCM diagnosis and treatment plan, followed by the treatment itself. Once the needles are in, they are retained for 20-30 minutes while you relax. The needles are then removed & once you are off the table she will discuss future treatment plans with you.
You can think of an Acupuncture treatment like removing a kink in a hose. If your garden hose has a kink in it, water cannot flow and without adequate water the plants cannot thrive, grow and flower. As an Acupuncturist Krista detects and corrects where the kinks or blockages in the flow of Qi (energy) are. Once located, she can use specific points & TCM modalities to un-kink and restore the proper flow of Qi, so that your cells, muscles, tissues and organs can function correctly.