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Bell’s Palsy is a paralysis of one side of a person’s face caused by a dysfunction of cranial the facial nerve (nerve VII) resulting in the inability to control facial muscles on the affected side. This disorder is often temporary with the trademark symptom of a sudden onset of complete or partial paralysis of the face that usually happens overnight. Bell’s palsy is believed to be brought about by an inflammatory condition that causes the facial nerve to swell. The swelling forces the nerve to compress resulting in nerve damage or nerve inhibition. Facial functions like raising the eyebrow, flaring of nostrils, tearing, closing the eye, frowning, smiling, and blinking all can become impaired. Aside from these, half the face appears to droop and taste and hearing sensations can be affected. Within a few weeks symptoms subside in most people weeks even without treatment, and within 3 to 6 months, the sufferer can attain complete recovery.
Bell’s palsy in TCM, or Traditional Chinese Medicine, is known as “deviation of the mouth” and blames this condition on external Cold and Wind that infiltrate the channels traversing the face and interfering with the flow of Blood and Qi (Energy) that prevents the muscles and vessels from receiving all-important nourishment. A very popular and extremely effective treatment for Bell’s palsy is acupuncture in Reading which involves the needling of acupuncture points on the affected side of the head, neck, and face as well as other parts of the body. Chinese herbs specifically designed for this disorder may be prescribed to heal the body from the inside out.
Western-trained physicians often prescribe corticosteroids for Bell’s palsy patients to relieve the inflammation and at times, an antiviral drug, as well. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs and pain relievers can also help. You can also apply moist heat by using washcloth soaked in warm water several times a day and putting it to the affected side to relieve the swelling. Exercising your face and massaging your facial muscles can also help as well as keeping the affected eye lubricated with eye drops. You can also wear an eye patch while sleeping at night to prevent you from scratching your eye. Relaxation techniques such as tai chi, meditation, and yoga can also be of benefit since stress can facilitate the occurrence of Bell’s palsy. Stay away from cold, drafts, and, wind especially after sweating. Do not also eat cold foods that come straight from the refrigerator or freezer. Abstain from eating spicy and fried fatty foods as they all can aggravate the condition. Most importantly, after you have developed Bell’s Palsy, seek treatment as soon as possible for faster healing and to avoid any residual complications.
A quarter of all infertility cases are estimated to be attributed to the male partner and another 15% – 25% may also have a male contribution.
Worth mentioning is that while a lab test may determine the normal rate of motility as lower, a population study focusing on male fertility showed that men who’ve succeeded in bearing a child had more than 63% rate of motility.
Sperm is sorted into the following categories:
– antisperm antibodies
– teratospermia (sperms that are immature and/or bizarre)
– olioligospermia (lessened sperm density)
– azoospermia (semen without any sperm)
– asthenospermia (poor sperm forward movement and motility)
– aspermia (no ejaculate)
In an acupuncture study published in Fertility and Sterility (2005), 28 men out of a total of 40 who had sperm conditions of unknown origin (teratozoospermia, asthenospermia, or oligospermia) received acupuncture two times a week for five weeks. Their results were compared to the men who received no acupuncture treatment.
To evaluate the samples, TEM (transmission electron microscopy) quantitative analysis was used.
A statistically substantial gain in the number and percentage of sperm in the total ejaculate was seen following acupuncture, as compared to the control group, with improvements in the nucleus’s and acrosome’s shape.
Also, following acupuncture treatment, the median percentage of progressive motility in ejaculate rose from 44.4% to 55%. However, there was no apparent effect in specific pathologies, like cell death (apoptosis), dead or motionless spermatozoa (necrosis) or sperm immaturity.
It was the conclusion of the study’s authors that “in combination with ART or even for attaining natural fertility potential, acupuncture treatment is a non-invasive and simple procedure that can lead to the improvement of sperm quality.”
A January 2000 Andrologia publication featured a pilot study that used acupuncture on men who were producing no sperm. An acupuncture plan of treatment led to the ability to produce sperm in 7 out of the 15 men who participated in the study. These men produced enough sperm to receive IVF therapy without the need for testicular biopsy. The group that did not receive acupuncture treatment (the control group) did not manifest an increase in sperm production.
Diet – Some diets are believed to help promote the production of healthy sperm. One such diet is the adequate consumption of certain vegetables and fruits (an average of 6 servings a day). Also highly recommended is the reduction in alcohol consumption. Others such as herbal remedies or nutritional supplements will need a diagnosis from a qualified practitioner; however, we may need to mention the following study involving organic foods.
A Danish study published in the Lancet in 1994 found that greenhouse workers had a substantially high sperm count among organic farmers. Their sperm count was two times plus as high compared to the control group (blue-collar workers) indicating foods organically grown can boost enhance fertility.
Exposure to the Environment
Exposure to adverse toxins may cause abnormal sperm morphology (shape) or reduce sperm count. This can occur through the use of recreational drugs (such as cocaine and marijuana), poor precautions being taken when using industrial-grade sprays/chemicals, and smoking,
Optimal Sperm Temperature Maintenance
A slightly lower body temperature is the ideal temperature of the testes in order to produce sperm. This is the reason why the testes are in the scrotum as they hang away from the body. Men suffering from low sperm counts are usually advised to keep their lifestyle factors to a minimum because they might overheat the testes. This can include setting their powered-on lap top computer directly on their knees, using spas and hot baths on a frequent basis, and donning tight underwear (such as bikini-style briefs).
TCM or Traditional Chinese Medicine works extremely well in treating lactation problems without the harmful side effects of pharmaceutical drugs. It is a medicinal system that’s derived from East Asia and is thousands of years old. It includes moxibustion, cupping, lifestyle and nutritional advices, massage, Chinese herbs, and, of course, acupuncture. One or more of these healing modalities may be part of your treatment protocol depending on your specific diagnosis. If you are facing lactation issues, it is important that you seek out a TCM practitioner who’s experienced in treating women during pregnancy and post-partum.
Lactation problems, according to TCM, can have two distinct categories: milk not flowing or low milk supply. A third category is mastitis which will be discussed later. Problems with let-down or milk not flowing are diagnosed as chi (energy) stagnation that prevents milk from flowing down the ducts and out of the nipple. A low milk supply diagnosis means the mother is deficient in chi and blood. It is not uncommon for a mother to be suffering from a combination of stagnation ((unable to express or let-down the milk) and deficiency (lack of blood and energy) at the same time.
It is believed in TCM that the menstrual blood of a woman is transformed into breast milk once the baby is born. This blood is the same blood that was flowing to the placenta before birth. Chi is essential for the conversion of her blood into milk, and when you have an ample supply of blood in your body, you will then have an adequate amount of milk to feed your baby. During delivery, the mother is predisposed to blood loss or anemia that can lead to low blood supply of the mother and thus low milk supply. Exhaustion caused by sleep deprivation and labor can hinder the production of milk since there is not enough energy to produce the milk.
When blood and chi supply is lacking resulting in low milk supply, the plan of treatment may involve the use of herbs, nutritional advice, and acupuncture. Nutrition is a key factor in the treatment of low milk supply. For the production of blood in the mother, any good food will help including chicken with the skin included in the soup stock, collagen-rich soups made from ham-hocks, eggs, fish, or organic red meats. It is especially important for a nursing mother to consume free-range and organic poultry and meat, if possible. For a mother following a vegan or vegetarian diet, a protein-rich diet is important. Cookies that help stimulate milk production are an ideal everyday addition to the diet of a woman with blood and chi deficiency due to the fact that the cookies contain special ingredients that help boost blood and chi production that in turn increases milk supply. Practitioners who are experienced in treating breastfeeding patients will provide you with additional nutritional advice.
Blockage or stagnation of chi around and in the breasts hinders the milk from moving and prevents let-down. Stagnation can result in breast engorgement, pressure, pain, distention, and fullness. Mastitis is usually the result of stagnation. According to TCM, the primary cause of this obstruction is emotional: depression, frustration, resentment, anger, and too much stress. These emotions lead to energy stagnation in the liver meridian. The liver meridian, in TCM, is responsible for the woman’s nipple function and also blocks or facilitates the movement of energy and by extension milk in the nearby ducts and meridians (energy channels) in the breast. Problems associated with stagnation such as poor milk flow or let down is most effectively addressed with massage therapy, acupuncture, and by the mother avoiding anything that would cause her emotional stress.
Mastitis is caused by various factors: stagnation of milk, blood, chi, as well as infection. TCM in combination with Western medicine for the treatment of mastitis works much better than just standalone Western treatment. To clear up the infection, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics, and a combination of medicinal compresses for the breast, herbs, massage, and acupuncture that can resolve the blocked milk, blood, and chi in the breast, that in turn reduces inflammation and engorgement. Herbal remedies can be used safely along with antibiotics which are deemed safe for the breastfeeding infant. Besides those above mentioned treatments, expressing milk as often as possible either via nursing, manually, or with a pump is very important for the successful treatment of mastitis.
Osteoarthritis is a very common condition for people over 40 years of age. This condition is defined as the progressive degeneration of the joints. It is a rather painful and oftentimes chronic health issue. Here is how it occurs:
Our body has a layer of membrane between all joints called the cartilage. During our youth, this cartilage facilitates movement by serving as a lubricating membrane between the two adjoining bones. When we move, the cartilage is the organ in our body that prevents connected bones from rubbing against each other when there is movement.
But as we grow older, the cartilage starts to progressively erode. It degrades to the point that it no longer can protect the bones from rubbing against each other. As a result, pain will be felt whenever there is movement. Swelling as a result of inflammation follows the soreness in several cases.
Osteoarthritis can be caused by a lot of factors: overuse, injury, old, age, heredity, etc. We now can understand why some people in their 20s or 30s suffer from osteoarthritis. If you have osteoarthritis there are at least two reasons why you need to seek treatment as early as possible. One reason is to stop the cartilage from getting damaged any further. The second reason is for the relief of swelling, soreness, and pain that typically comes with osteoarthritis.
If there is inflammation around the affected joints, Western-trained doctors typically prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs that are steroid based. These drugs however, cause a lot of side effects. New studies have shown that repeated use of these medications can actually induce osteoarthritis, and make the condition even worse. This has forced doctors to look for safe and non-steroid modes of treatment to resolve osteoarthritis.
Acupuncture in Encino is one very good alternative treatment for osteoarthritis. It has proven that it can quell the symptoms. A recent clinical controlled trial tested the efficacy of acupuncture over the use of NSAIMs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines). In the trial, it was revealed that 70% of the patients experienced relief of pain relief right after an acupuncture treatment.
Acupuncture is an ancient Eastern mode of treatment that has been around for more than 5,000 years. We now see a trend showing a growing number of Western doctors learning about acupuncture that they eventually integrate into their treatment repertoire. Acupuncture uses thin needles to activate the acupuncture points in the body. According to Chinese medicine, the human body has over 2000 acupuncture points (acupoints). When there is balance in Chi (vital energy) flow, the body will be able to heal itself. So, the ultimate goal of acupuncture treatment is to stimulate these acupoints in order to remove blockages and allow Chiu to move freely once again.
Western medicine believes that these acupoints are components of the central nervous system. Special chemicals such as hormones and neurotransmitters are released when these points are stimulated which leads to the healing of the body.
When you treat osteoarthritis with acupuncture, you can depend less on steroid based drugs. The treatment allows the affected joints to slowly but surely heal. It also naturally but quickly relieves osteoarthritis pain.
Hypotension or low blood pressure is a condition that can bring about symptoms such as fainting and dizziness in people. Moreover, a low blood pressure can signify that your organs and brain are not getting the adequate amounts of oxygen and nutrients. A low blood pressure typically is deemed to be 90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), or less above 60 mm Hg or less. Herbal remedies, lifestyle changes, and medications are the most common treatments for this condition. If you are taking medications, we advise to not replace it with herbs. Consult with your physician before taking any herbal supplements.
An herb known to address sexual dysfunction, especially ED or erectile dysfunction in men, yohimbe can be taken as a tablet, capsule, extract, or tea. The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine believes that this herb is linked to an increased blood pressure and an increased heart rate in people. If used for an extended period of time, it can do more harm than good. Talk to your doctor prior to using this herb.
Derived from the camellia sinesis plant, black tea is an herb that according to MedlinePlus, has been utilized to teat low blood pressure and headaches and prevent heart disease. According to MedlinePlus consuming black tea can help lessen the risk of dizziness upon standing, a condition known as orthostatic hypotension that most often affects older people. Consult with your physician to know the proper dosage or if this herb can benefit you.
Traditionally used for constipation, nausea, and indigestion, bitter orange is an herb that can also be used to treat nasal congestion and heartburn, and to lose weight. The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine thinks that Bitter Orange can help boost heart rate and blood pressure. Therefore, it may not be a safe dietary supplement, especially if the person taking it has a heart condition or has high blood pressure. Talk to your doctor prior to use.
Licorice has been often traditionally been used to treat for digestive system problems such as colic, stomach ulcers, and heartburn. MedlinePlus believes that licorice is a food that can increase blood pressure. If you suffer from high blood pressure, it’s important to remember that you should not consume licorice in large amounts, since doing so can result in heart problems. It’s recommended to you eat 30 grams per day or more. Talk to your doctor before using this herb.
A year ago, I had a patient who was suffering from a herpes simplex infection on his face. The infection was severe and made his face very swollen. I treated it with antibiotics. However, after the last few months, my patient started developing very dry skin and thinning hair. The shampoos and lotions have prescribed seem to have little effect, especially on the hair loss. I recommended acupuncture to my patient since I have tried it myself for the very same dry skin condition I’ve suffered some years ago.
Although clinical trials have not conclusively shown acupuncture to be a valid treatment for dry skin, some of my patients suffering from dry skin who I recommended for acupuncture reported that the treatment has helped stopped their hair loss and dry skin. Acupuncture in Orlando is also believed to help treat shingles and herpes zoster which gives some people suffering from herpes simplex a bit of encouragement
From the perspective of Chinese medicine, the label which one gives to an illness is less important than the symptoms that the patient has. The dryness that occurs on your head and face may be a local condition that is caused by the virus. It may also be a sign of a much more general systemic issue. The acupuncturist sees to it that treatment is not simply aimed at resolving the symptom but guaranteeing that it does not come back.
I strongly urge you to go for a face to face consultation with your nearest BAcC-accredited acupuncturist to see if acupuncture can be considered for you. Just make sure that you talk to your doctor or healthcare provider first.
People often associate Tibetan medicine with Chinese medicine. Yes, there are definitely some similarities in the fundamental approaches, but the techniques that each uses are practically different. Some of the main differences between these two forms of medical systems are as follows:
Science and art
Science and art are included in the approach Tibetan medicine uses towards treatment of health conditions. This distinct trait has made it quite successful in achieving its goal of providing care and overall wellness. Tibetan medicine is deemed a science since its procedures and principles are centered on the treatment of both the mind and body. Hence, its style is orderly and systematic. This ancient medical system validates the thesis that the body is more than able to connect to its environment.
Tibetan medicine is also considered an art since its reason for treatment can be applied to the development of natural comprehension, perception, and positive aura. All these imply that this healing system promotes a deep understanding of natural suffering in order to select the most proper cure possible. Its roots lies in the ancient teachings of Buddha, specifically, ethics and karma.
Diverging principles and techniques
One glaring difference between Tibetan and Chinese medicine is the principles and techniques they use. Those aspects have differentiated these two forms of ancient medicines over the years. Chinese medicine follows ancient tradition and was known to focus on the patient rather than the illness. So, even when two patients manifest the same illness, their symptoms may still be different because their overall being and life experiences will always be unique.
Different origins and influences
Chinese medicine and Tibetan medicine have their own influences that are seen through their origins. The Taoist philosophy specifically, the concept of Yin-Yang is followed in Chinese medicine, on the other hand, Tibetan medicine has its teachings based on Buddha. Also, Chinese medicine stresses a dualistic philosophy while Tibetan medicine follows a singular way philosophical viewpoint. Dualists believe in a universe that has contradicting elements such as spirit and body and bad and good.
While the differences between Chinese medicine and Tibetan medicine are obvious and significant, both utilize effective and proven methods that have benefited a lot of patients who sought treatment. Understanding these two traditional medical systems a bit more can ease the apprehension of people towards alternative medicine treatments that only brings mental, physical, and spiritual healing.
DeJongh Acupuncture Clinic
2929 SW 3rd Ave #610
Miami, FL 33129
Herbal medicine and acupuncture these days have been credited to help a lot of menopausal women overcome their hormones imbalance. Apart from menopause, several other factors have been associated with hormonal imbalance. They may include fertility difficulties, premenstrual syndrome, and heavy, irregular, and painful periods. Those imbalances can be due to a number of factors. Some contributory factors include a poor diet, emotional stress, insufficient rest, exposure to cold or heat and other harsh elements, and lack of physical exercise.
According to TCM or Traditional Chinese medicine, the human body possesses an important life force known as Qi or Chi. Qi flows through our bodies via pathways that are similar to the way blood flows through the veins; one difference is that these pathways cannot be seen but are nevertheless central to our well-being. When a blockage develops in these pathways (known as meridians), it results in illnesses, including menopausal hormonal imbalance. This type of imbalance can generate severe discomfort in sufferers. Acupuncture has turned out to be a treatment of choice for many these days. It aids in muscle, connective tissue, and nerve stimulation which then leads to effective and better blood circulation to all parts of the body.
Benefits of Acupuncture
Besides being a natural form of Chinese medicine, acupuncture is also a great reliever of pain and used widely to resolve several other health issues. Despite the fact that the treatment utilizes needles, the method is actually painless and helps women overcome the uncomfortable symptoms associated with menopause including hot flashes, night sweats, and mood swings. Acupuncture is so safe that it does not have side effects unlike other menopause remedies.
It is also effective in treating other obstetric and gynecological conditions such as PMS difficulties, fertility problems, and painful, irregular and heavy periods. As a primary treatment or used in conjunction with other allopathic or holistic therapies, acupuncture has the ability to rectify all those conditions. This mode of healing can be more enhanced when a good diet, and certain lifestyle changes such as a proper exercise regime is incorporated into the course of treatment.
Acupuncture meridian systems in association with the female hormonal system connect the uterus with the heart, brain, and kidneys to help restore balance and health. The treatment also affects the person’s emotions, thought patterns, and overall hormonal function. It stimulates the circulation and manufacture of hormones inside the body, and also initiates the production of endorphins that’s related largely to hormones affecting mood during a woman’s different life cycles like pregnancy and menopause. In treating hormonal imbalance, acupuncture is often combined with Chinese herbal therapy to boost the outcomes of the treatment.
Addressing Other Medical Conditions
We now know that acupuncture is very much used to bring back balance to the hormones. What some others don’t know is that acupuncture can also be used chronic back pain. It is used to relieve pain brought about by spinal stenosis (pain in the back and neck) without resorting to surgery. For fertility-challenged couples, acupuncture also has shown to work extremely well. It does so by boosting blood circulation in the uterus and ovaries. However, for structural issues like blocked fallopian tubes, acupuncture may not help. A lot of women tend to gain weight during menopause; acupuncture balances hormones and consequent weight loss via more efficient metabolism during menopause.
Psoriasis can be an embarrassing and painful condition. It’s chronic and quite common. Some sufferers are opting for natural and alternative treatments like acupuncture despite the fact that there are numerous conventional treatments such as drugs and creams, available in the market.
What is Psoriasis?
An autoimmune disease, psoriasis occurs when T cells, cells that help defend the body from foreign substances, attack skin cells that are healthy. This leads to an unhealthy rapid production of new skin cells.
This rapid development of new skin cells, leads to lesions and scaly thick patches on the skin that is difficult to deal. The lesions can be itchy and/or painful, and embarrassing especially when the disease is located on an exposed part of the body.
Several factors can set off a psoriasis flare-up. These can include infections, drugs, consumption of alcohol, smoking, cold weather, and stress. Oral or topical drugs can put the condition under control when a flare-up happens.
Being a chronic disease, people with psoriasis have to deal with it all their life. In certain instances, it can cause additional problems such as the potentially debilitating psoriatic arthritis.
A component of TCM or traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is an ancient healing tradition that works especially in the treatment of painful conditions such as headaches and arthritis. This treatment uses filiform needles that are placed at specified points on the body.
There has been very limited studies done on psoriasis treatment through acupuncture, but some that have been performed prove that the treatment is a worthwhile option. In one study, 62 people suffering from psoriasis, was treated with acupuncture. Some of the patients (25 of them) also exhibited psoriatic arthritis symptoms. All were unsuccessfully treated with conventional treatment. They then underwent with nine sessions of acupuncture on average. About half of the subjects at the end of the study experiences almost or total clearance of their skin lesions with only nine showing limited or no improvement.”
Psoriatic Arthritis and Acupuncture
Springing from psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis is a complication that involves chronic pain in the joints which can impair the function of those joints. Almost all proof of acupuncture’s effectiveness can be found in studies connecting it to the removal of pain. This acupuncture effect has made the treatment more popular among psoriatic arthritis sufferers who are more concerned with the pain associated with this type of arthritis than any other symptoms.
Other Treatment Alternatives
Anecdotal evidences abound that prove acupuncture treatment combined with lifestyle changes (daily baths, daily sunlight, a healthy diet, etc.) can benefit people with psoriasis. One of the greatest benefits of this treatment is that is completely safe to use. Moreover, knowing what triggers your psoriasis flare up can help change your lifestyle in order to reduce the severity of your condition or avoid the disease altogether.
Besides acupuncture and lifestyle changes, the Mayo Clinic recommends that taking omega-3 fish oil supplements or using aloe vera and applying it directly several times a day to your skin several times a day can help relieve inflammation.
If you have psoriasis, there is nothing you can do but learn how to live with it. When the disease is triggered, learn to manage the flare-ups and treat the symptoms as they arise. A more effective way of dealing with the symptoms is to know what triggers them, what exacerbates your condition, and what relieves it, acupuncture is one viable option, and with multiple treatments, your psoriasis can become less disruptive with time.