Acupuncture in Surrey and Langley
Acupuncture is a form of traditional Chinese medicine that has been practiced for centuries. It's based on balancing the body, moving the body’s energy, called Qi (say "chee"), through and around the body along pathways called meridians.
Illness occurs when something blocks or unbalances your chi. Acupuncture is a way to unblock or influence chi and help it flow back into balance.
Acupuncture is done by putting very thin needles into your skin at certain points on your body. This is done to influence the energy flow. Sometimes heat, pressure, or mild electrical current is used along with needles. For a full list of syndromes and illnesses that Acupuncture is successful in addressing, please click here.
Tracy uses Fire Cupping as her main cupping method. In Fire Cupping, an acupuncturist creates suction in a cup, applies the cup to the patient’s body, and in response to the suction, blood rushes to the area and the skin, muscle and fascia at the contact site are “sucked up” into the cup.The flame burned within the cup creates suction by applying heat to the cup—hence the name “fire cupping”.
Usually, a number of suctioning cups are applied to the patient’s skin for several minutes and then removed. While cupping is not considered painful, it may leave round red marks on the skin for a day or more. One way to think of cupping is to compare it to a massage, but in reverse: the cups pull your muscles up, rather than pushing them down.
Ultimately, cupping brings the same relief from body aches and pains that a deep massage would offer. However, cupping takes less than half the time—just 5 to 15 minutes!
Glass cupping sets are traditionally used in acupuncture cupping. Cupping has the function of warming and promoting the flow of qi and blood in the meridians, dispelling cold dampness, diminishing swelling and pain. The acupuncture cupping method is mainly used to treat bi syndrome caused by wind dampness such as pain in the back, shoulders, hips and legs. Gastrointestinal disorders like stomachache, vomiting or diarrhea. Also respiratory symptoms related to congestion, coughing and asthma.
Moxibustion is a traditional Chinese medicine technique that involves the burning of mugwort, a small, spongy herb, to facilitate healing. Moxibustion has been used throughout Asia for thousands of years; in fact, the actual Chinese character for acupuncture, translated literally, means "acupuncture-moxibustion." The purpose of moxibustion, as with most forms of traditional Chinese medicine, is to strengthen the blood, stimulate the flow of qi, and maintain general health.
In Canada, we do not use “Direct” moxibustion as described above. Indirect moxibustion is currently the more popular form of care because there is a much lower risk of pain or burning. In indirect moxibustion, a practitioner lights one end of a moxa stick, roughly the shape and size of a cigar, and holds it close to the area being treated for several minutes until the area turns red. Another form of indirect moxibustion uses both acupuncture needles and moxa. A needle is inserted into an acupoint and retained. The tip of the needle is then wrapped in moxa and ignited, generating heat to the point and the surrounding area. After the desired effect is achieved, the moxa is extinguished and the needle(s) removed.
Gua Sha is a traditional Chinese medical treatment in which the skin is scraped to produce light petechiae. The treatment releases unhealthy bodily matter from blood stasis within sore, tired, stiff or injured muscle areas to stimulate new oxygenated blood flow to the areas, thus promotes metabolic cell repair, regeneration, healing and recovery. Gua sha is sometimes referred to as "scraping", "spooning" or “coining”. GuA gua sha tools, which is simply a Chinese ceramic or bone spoon or spatula, is used to gently rub across the skin after gua sha oil (a massage oil) is applied.
Gua sha is used similar to cupping but may be used across many parts of the body where cups may have difficulty staying in place (ex: arms, neck, foot or calf). Gua sha is used to treat a smaller and more superficial area of the skin when compared to cupping. Additionally, the response to Gua She helps your acupuncturist determine the areas with the most stagnation that require additional treatment with acupuncture needles.
Yoga and Fitness Program Design
As a certified Yoga Instructor and Personal Trainer, Tracy has the unique opportunity to provide you with therapeutic exercises to augment your treatment and healing. From rehabilitative exercises, to meditation practices, to directed exercise programs, you can be sure you will have a well rounded treatment plan to accompany your acupuncture treatments. To experience the most wellness effect possible, it is important to address all aspects of your lifestyle while in treatment.
In Chinese medicine, there are not ‘good’ foods or ‘bad’ foods; there are appropriate foods for each individual or season. In the traditional system of dietary cures, foods have been organized into categories based on their innate temperature, energetics (the direction in which they move qi and how they affect qi and blood flow), and the organs they affect.
For example, a person who has a wind cold condition with excessive clear mucus might be told to consume hot soup made from onions and mustard greens. The onions are warming, expel cold, and sedate excess yin. The mustard greens have similar properties, and they also help expel mucus and relieve chest congestion. Flavouring the soup with ginger and black pepper enhances the warming, expectorant action. With such a lunch, one can imagine that the person's herb formula would be much more effective.
On the other hand, if the same patient decided to have salad for lunch with a cold glass of milk, the cold and damp nature of this meal would make the wind cold condition much worse. Any herbal therapy administered at this point would be much less effective, since the therapy first needs to overcome the negative effect of the food before dealing with the acute ailment. For this reason, a patient is always advised about which foods could exacerbate the imbalance and which will help restore balance.
In addition to Dietary Therapy (Chinese Medicine), Tracy holds a certification as a Level 1 Sports Nutritionist. In this regard, she can blend your body’s personal food therapy recommendations, with foods and eating programs designed to allow you your best performance and energy.