July 8, 2010


Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese practice. It involves inserting needles in various points on the body. It is supposed to relieve pain, boost energy and/or enhance the immune system, among other things.

Acupuncturists do not claim to be able to cure arthritis. They have shown to be an effective pain management strategy, and the scientific medical community agrees for the most part.

I had a profound experience when I first went to see my new acupuncturist Mr. Chung. He first asked me where I had pain. Then he took my left wrist in his hands and closed his eyes, concentrating, listening. He said "It's on the left side." He took my right hand and did the same thing. He asked me "Why do you have so much stress?" It was really strange. Two things went through my mind: In alphabetical order? and How the hell does he know that?

He then got me to lie down on the table, and with permission he pushed on the left side of my stomach right beside my bellybutton [a process called palpation - feeling the body for tender "ashi" points]. It hurt horribly. In his wise and limited words, he simply stated "I found it." He got me to feel it and there was sort of a hard mass with a throbbing sensation. He then got me to press down on the right side. There was no pain and it was soft, completely different. Mr. Chung told me that this was the source of my joint pain and health issues. My stress is causing my body to react a certain way, which in turn causes digestion and stomach issues. And then, in Mr. Chung's opinion, it contributes to the inflammation throughout my body's joints.

After being poked and prodded with needles for 10-15 minutes, I was on my way. It's (obviously) not something that is going to disappear overnight. The experience gave me a lot to think about, particularly with Mr. Chung's ideas about CAUSALITY.

He also told me that it would take more than acupuncture to cure me. He had some advice about what would. He advises me to take some Korean herbs. It is a drink that you take three times a day for two weeks or more. They are very expensive, so it is something that I am going to think about. But he tells me that my quality of life would greatly improve if I take them. If I don't do anything, my quality of life will go down, that I know for sure. It goes with having a progressive illness.

He also suggests that I avoid cold drinks and sweet fruits, and that I eat small dinners. Things to think about. The wheels are certainly turning..

Oh yeah, and he suggested I get a colonic [clean out my colon & its contents]. I'll keep you posted on that horror. Eep.

1 comment:

  1. Tori, I am LOVING your posts! So informative and definetly alot to think about! Did Granny send you that email the other day about sweet potatoes, etc.? I loved it and thought it made alot of sense. Glad you are not just resigning yourself to your illness. Good for you to fight back and take charge. Love you!