Frequently Asked Questions

What is Chinese Medicine?

Chinese medicine uses acupuncture, herbal medicine, and dietary therapy to support the body’s innate healing system and achieve optimal health. Originating over 2,000 years ago, Chinese medicine is one of the oldest professional medical systems in the world.

The premise of Chinese medicine, and of acupuncture, is that the circulation of Qi (pronounced “chee”) throughout the body is essential for optimal health. Illness results when the Qi is blocked, weak, or stagnant. Acupuncture restores the flow of Qi by stimulating its pathways, called meridians. The meridians are channels throughout the body, similar to the nervous and circulatory systems. By correcting or balancing the Qi, acupuncture restores and strengthens the body’s innate healing system.

What is the relationship between acupuncture and Western medical care?

Acupuncture can be used in conjunction with Western Medical Care. In many cases, clients already being cared for by other providers will need to remain in their care. Acupuncture practitioners cooperate with other providers and do not recommend altering other therapies or medications without consulting the personal physician.

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a modality of Chinese medicine that consists primarily of the insertion of fine needles at specific points on the body. An acupuncturist is trained to analyze the underlying cause of a client’s problems or symptoms. Using thin, sterile, disposable needles, the acupuncturist inserts the needles along specific points of the meridian pathways to help balance and unblock the Qi. Treating the person’s basic constitution, as well as alleviating the symptoms, is part of the treatment plan.

Is acupuncture safe?

Yes, acupuncture is extremely safe when performed by a well trained, licensed professional. All licensed acupuncturists are required to follow FDA regulations, including the use of individually packaged, sterile, single-use needles.

Do the needles hurt?

No, the insertion of acupuncture needles is practically painless. In some cases, you may not feel them at all. The needles are very thin, and nothing like a needle used for an ordinary injection. Often people feel some tingling, warmth, or a feeling of the Qi moving along the energy channels of the body called meridians. Most people find acupuncture extremely relaxing.

How many treatments will I need?

The number of recommended treatments depends on the severity and nature of your complaint. You may only need a single treatment for some conditions. A series of 5 to 10 treatments can help resolve many chronic problems. To help increase the efficacy of your treatment, we may suggest additional supportive modalities and lifestyle changes, such as diet, exercise, relaxation, self-massage, and/or Chinese herbal medicines.

What do I need to do before receiving an acupuncture treatment?

To get the maximum benefit from your treatment, follow these guidelines:

  1. Wear loose clothing that you can easily change in and out of.
  2. Avoid treatment when you are tired, hungry, upset, or shortly after a meal or sex.

What do I need to do while receiving acupuncture?

  1. Just relax. If you have questions, ask them! We want to make sure that you get the most benefit possible from your treatment.
  2. Once the needles are inserted, do not change your position or move suddenly. If you are uncomfortable in any way, don’t hesitate to tell Judith.

What can I expect after treatment?

You may experience an immediate total or partial relief from your symptoms. In a few cases, there may be only slight relief and the pain or symptoms will continue to diminish over the next couple of days. Sometimes the relief will last, or it may partially return, indicating more treatment is needed. Generally, though, because the acupuncture needles have an immediate effect on the parasympathetic nervous system, you can expect to feel much better after each treatment.

What is Moxa, and how can it be used for healing the body?

Moxa has been used in Chinese Medicine for centuries and is made from the herb MUGWORT also known as Artemisia vulgaris Lati flora.  The plant is prepared by stripping the leaves from the stems and then grinding and drying to make a substance that is called Moxa wool. Moxa comes in sticks or can be made into small cones.

Moxa is used during a treatment to warm the client when there is a cold condition in the body. For example, if I touch a client’s feet, hands, legs, lower back or abdomen and there is a cold sensation, I may choose to use moxa. Also, if the client’s pulse is slow, and they have a pale face moxa is often indicated. I may ask them if they feel consistently cold and need extra layers of clothes even when it is warm outside. Do they prefer to drink warm drinks, and do they avoid cold drinks?

I generally use more moxa during the winter months or during cold and damp weather. First, I apply the moxa to the acupuncture points and then I insert the needle. The moxa warms the point, and the needle takes the heat into the acupuncture point, for a stronger therapeutic effect. The client will tell me if the moxa gets too hot and the moxa is removed immediately.

There are contraindications for Moxa treatments – some of these are high blood pressure, hot flashes, or diabetic neuropathy. According to many textbooks, moxa is not used on the face or on the lower back or abdomen of pregnant women. After childbirth though a moxa stick can be applied to the lower abdomen and moved in a circular motion to warm the entire lower abdomen helping the mother to warm up after loss of blood and to help the uterus return into position.

I have been using moxa in my practice since 1999 and have had great results with clients with cold conditions

2020 Judith Brooks Acupuncture, LLC