Many people think of self care as being selfish or only something to do when you have a little extra money.  But the truth is that self care is vitally important and can help you maintain your health well into your golden years.  Acupuncture provides numerous health benefits in a very holistic manner.  It’s a non-pharmacological approach to health and wellness addresses a variety of health concerns you might be struggling with.  But there are always things to consider when undertaking something new, so let’s dive in and provide some insight on what to expect.
One of the most well known benefits of regular acupuncture treatments is its ability to reduce pain and inflammation. By stimulating specific points on the body, acupuncture can help to reduce headaches, joint pain, arthritis and even digestive pain.  Acupuncture addresses inflammation by helping the body release excessive inflammatory cortisol and then stimulating the vagus nerve, activating the body’s natural defense against inflammation.

Acupuncture improves digestive issues like heartburn, lactose intolerance and irritable bowel syndrome. This occurs by way of balancing the fluids in the digestive system, eliminating excess heat, cold or dampness and by stimulating blood flow to the digestive tract.  Many people who are eating the standard American diet suffer from digestive issues that can frequently be helped with regular acupuncture treatments.

Acupuncture is a great option to help improve the quality of your sleep. As mentioned above, acupuncture is great at treating chronic pain and inflammation, which might be one cause of poor sleep. Most sleep remedies treat the symptoms associated with lack of sleep, but acupuncture looks at the core issues to regulate your body’s energy and restore your sleep cycle by reducing stress and inducing a feeling of calm and balance of the mind and body.

Acupuncture also improves the body’s immune system by manipulating energy flow and eliminating any blockages, thus restoring the body’s natural harmony. When meridians or channels are impaired or blocked, you can be much more vulnerable to illness. .

One of the lesser known advantages of regular acupuncture treatments is how it can adjust your mood.  Many people feel relaxed and calm after a treatment.  And studies show that this effect can last for several days.  This occurs because acupuncture can help to balance hormones, especially cortisol, the hormone most closely related to elevated stress and inflammation.  But other hormones are also affected by acupuncture, which can be contributing to your body being out of balance (think estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, etc.)

While incorporating acupuncture into your wellness routine has amazing benefits, there are a few things to consider as you plan. Depending on your health goals, acupuncture can require a time commitment as sessions tend to be 60 minutes long and could be required more than once a week.  There is also a financial commitment to factor in.  While we do accept payments from HSA accounts, we do not work with insurance, as most policies only provide minimal coverage, if any.  Lastly, you may be instructed to start taking herbal formulas to help with your health issue, so that needs to be considered as a possibility also.

There are a few key things you can do to successfully integrate acupuncture into your wellness routine. One idea is to create a schedule to plan your regular acupuncture sessions. Consistency is key when it comes to integrating acupuncture. Work with your practitioner to plan a schedule that helps you achieve your wellness goals.

Acupuncture can be extremely effective when combined with other wellness practices like meditation, yoga, massage and a healthy diet.  Don’t be afraid to explore different approaches to see what works best for you. Another key is to keep the lines of communication open between you and your practitioner. It’s not only a good idea to discuss your goals, but also communicate any changes you notice as you incorporate acupuncture or other modalities into your routine. This will help your practitioner make more personalized adjustments as needed.

With open communication, intentional planning and consistency, acupuncture can become a valuable addition to your wellness routine, helping you achieve balance in your overall health. Consider how much better you can feel, not just now, but also down the road, all from a little much needed self care.

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