I admit it, I'm biased.
I run a community acupuncture clinic and as a result get to experience first-hand the benefits and wondrous outcomes of acupuncture...
If you haven't tried acupuncture before—and when "community" is tacked on beforehand, I know it sounds even wierder—I urge you to read on!
1. I'm afraid of needles.
Full disclosure: when I was in my 20's, I had to have a minor surgery. Before walking into the OR, I had to wait in a room with all of the other pre-surgical patients, together. This included people older than me as well as people younger than me. Our only job was to sit there are wait, which is what every single other person in that room did.
Except for me: I balled my eyes out, shaking and sobbing. And why? I was terrified of what was to come... The surgery?? Nope. I would be asleep for that one.
I was terrified of the needle they would give me before they operated.
Needless to say, I have come a long way since that day, thanks in part to med school that forced me be the practice guinea pig for people who had NEVER taken blood before. (Worst fear, come to life!)
But the point I'm trying to make is this: I can assert with all confidence that I have an unusual fear of needles. And. Acupuncture is not scary to me. It is completely different from getting your blood taken or a vaccine. You can barely feel it. The needles are tiny. Honestly.
2. I don't have an injury.
Yes, acupuncture is amazing for bringing down inflammation from an injury. It is amazing for back pain and neck pain and headaches.
It is also amazing for so many other conditions, a short list being:
- sleep troubles
- anxiety, fatigue
- healthy pregnancy support
- irregular or painful periods
- post-concussion syndrome
- smoking cessation support
3. I'm into real medicine.
Yes, of course you are! I'm a naturopathic doctor who bases my recommendations on proven methods of treatment. This isn't some hocus pocus. This is medicine.
Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, a practice that is much, much older than the medicine that we now know as the standard. The effectiveness of acupuncture has been tested over thousands of years, and there are also thousands (24,646 when I checked PubMed today) of modern-day scientific studies regarding its efficacy.
Another bonus: Acupuncture can be safely used alongside any treatments you may be receiving from other doctors or practitioners. It does not interact poorly with any medications, and will only act as supportive treatment to lower your blood pressure/decrease your pain/help you sleep.
*An acupuncture visit will always include a proper medical history to ensure it is safe to administer acupuncture in your particular case.
4. I can't afford it.
This is the best part. You decide how much to pay!
Community acupuncture is based on the premise that all people deserve access to alternative medicine. By offering acupuncture in a group setting (other people are in the room, but you get treated individually), costs are kept low for the acupuncturist or doctor, and the patient reaps the benefits!
Speaking of benefits, acupuncture and naturopathic medicine are covered by most extended health benefits. If you have benefits, we can write you a receipt and voila, you don't pay a cent for treatment!
5. I don't have time.
Ok. We need to have a SERIOUS talk about preventative medicine/wellness promotion/self-care. I know—we are ALL busy! Whether you run your own business, drive your kids to soccer 7 days a week, are a single parent, are a PhD student...
You still need to take care of yourself so that all those other responsibilities get the best you. And so you don't burn out and get sick!
Whether you get acupuncture or a massage or any other form of treatment, you will benefit from the simple fact that you took time for yourself to be cared for. Do it. For your kids, for your partner, for your parents, for your pets, for you friends, for your co-workers. And: for you.
-Dr. Nicole Rush, ND