WHAT IS ACUPUNCTURE?
Acupuncture is a primary health-care modality that has flourished in China for over 2,500 years and is widely used throughout Asia and in Europe. It is a complete medical system that is used to diagnose, treat and prevent illness. Acupuncture in the United States has become more popular in recent years.
Far more than a technique of inserting tiny thread-like needles along meridian lines of the body, acupuncture’s complex system of diagnostic corollaries takes into consideration the person as a whole, not just isolated systems. Acupuncture is practiced based on discerning a “pattern of disharmony” and treating it accordingly. Acupuncturists may use a number of modalities in their treatment including physical therapies, herbal medicine, moxibustion and nutrition. In diagnosing illness the practitioner will often review past and present medical history, as well as perform an exam which will include pulse and tongue diagnosis.
The goal of acupuncture treatments is not just to relieve symptoms, but to strengthen the body physically and emotionally, prevent disease, control pain, and achieve longevity.
HOW DOES ACUPUNCTURE WORK?
It has been scientifically determined that human beings are actually unique bio-energetic systems. For thousands of years Oriental medicine has acknowledged that there is a vital force that flows through all things which is referred to as “Qi ”(often called “energy” in the west). Qi flows along the pathways in the human body, which are related to the organs and the tendo-muscular system. When the balance of energy is disturbed due to either trauma, poor diet, medications, stress, hereditary conditions, environmental factors, or excess emotional issues, then pain and/or illness results. Oriental medicine focuses on correcting these energetic imbalances by breaking up obstructions and encouraging an even flow of Qi, which stimulates the body’s ability to heal itself.
WHAT SHOULD YOU EXPECT DURING TREATMENT?
Most patients find the treatments very relaxing and are surprised how comfortable they feel during the treatment and how easily the needles are placed. Often, people fall asleep during the treatment. Extremely fine, hair-thin, flexible needles are placed at specific points on energetic pathways, known as meridians. When the needles are inserted you may feel a slight sensation upon entry and then a sensation of comfortable tingling and warmth as the needles connect with the Qi. The length and frequency of treatments vary for each individual and condition. As you improve, fewer visits are required.
IS IT SAFE?
One of the wonderful advantages of acupuncture is the absence of serious side effects. Needles generally cause no bleeding on entry or removal, and one-time disposable needles are always used in our clinic to insure there will be no spread of disease. As well, there is no risk of the treatments interfering with medications you may be taking.
CERTIFICATION & LICENSING
The regulation of acupuncture and Oriental medicine varies from state to state. The NCCAOM (National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) has established standards to practice acupuncture safely and effectively. Many states use the NCCAOM examination to meet licensing/registration requirements, while a few other states such as California have developed their own examination process. Dr. Kargman is a licensed acupuncturist through the state of Maryland, has passed the NCCAOM’s licensing exams and is a Diplomate of Acupuncture through the NCCAOM. In addition she received her Master’s degree in acupuncture from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine and Health Sciences in 1997, and was valedictorian of her graduating class.
Many insurance companies currently cover acupuncture treatments. Check with your insurance carrier to determine your coverage. Although we do not take insurance as payment in our office, we will provide you with a superbill which can be submitted to your insurance company for your reimbursement.
IS ACUPUNCTURE FOR YOU? WHAT IS IT USED FOR?
Oriental medicine and acupuncture is not only for pain management, it is a comprehensive system of health care that is used for a variety of conditions. It can be used by any one, from athletes who want to optimize their performance levels, to cancer patients who are experiencing side effects from chemotherapy or radiation. Below are some conditions commonly treated with acupuncture:
High Blood Pressure
This is just a sample of the commonly treated conditions. Of course, there are many more.
So, to discover whether acupuncture is helpful to you, give it a try. Give our office a call to schedule an appointment for your first treatment.