Acupuncture regulates the flow of Qi ('chee'), your body's vital energy, around your body through pathways called meridians. Recently medical scientists have described myofiscial pathways that follow the meridians recorded by early acupuncturists. Growing knowledge of how body cells communicate with each other may overlap with the concept of Qi.
Qi can be disturbed, depleted or blocked for reasons related to lifestyle or the environment and this can result in symptoms of pain, illness or a general feeling of being ill at ease. In some cases, traditional acupuncture can be effective in restoring the balance thus promoting physical and emotional harmony.
Treatment is aimed at the root cause of your condition as well as your main symptoms. This helps with resolving your problem and enhancing your feeling of well-being. Because acupuncture is designed to affect your whole body, you may find that other niggling problems also resolve as your main complaint improves.
COULD ACUPUNCTURE HELP ME?
Many people come to acupuncture for help with specific pain, for example, Osteoarthritis of the knee or headaches, or for more general health issues such as an overactive bladder. Some people use acupuncture because they feel generally unwell but have no conventional diagnosis, while others choose acupuncture as a preventative measure to help maintain good health or to improve their general sense of well- being. Some pregnant woman have acupuncture throughout their pregnancy. Acupuncture is considered suitable for all ages and can be used effectively alongside mainstream medicine. Many people return to acupuncture again and again because they find it relaxing and beneficial. For more information and the latest research please visit the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) website: https://www.acupuncture.org.uk/
IS IT SAFE?
Acupuncture is one of the safest medical treatments on offer in the UK. Research studies in 2011 and 2012 conclude that treatment with properly trained and qualified acupuncturists carries an extremely low risk of an adverse event. *British Medical Journal, 2001:323:467
THE ACUPUNCTURE TEAM
Brendagh O'Sullivan Lic Ac MBAcC Lynda French BSc (Hons) Lic Ac MBAcC DipTn
Lynda and Brendagh are fully licensed and insured members of the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) www.acupuncture.org.uk and working in accordance with their codes of Professional Conduct and Safe Practice. You may, therefore, be able to reclaim your treatment costs from your health insurance company. Please contact Cowan House reception for the current full list of private health insurers.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I COME FOR TREATMENT?
As Traditional Acupuncturists, our first step is always to connect with you as a person. We use a number of diagnostic methods to build a complete picture of your health and lifestyle. We will take a full medical history, read your pulses, look at your tongue and may examine the site of your symptoms. We will then develop your personal treatment plan. At follow up appointments we will combine your feedback with further observations and re-examine your pulse and tongue to continue your treatment. Each acupuncture treatment involves the insertion of very fine, sterile needles into specific points in the body, sometimes for just a few seconds r sometimes retained for around 20 minutes. The combination of points used will be determined by your symptoms, general health and lifestyle. Single-use disposable needles that come in sealed packs are always used. They are much finer than those used for injections or blood tests when they are inserted, you may feel a gentle tingling sensation or a dull ache. This generally passes quite quickly and is often followed by a feeling of deep relaxation.
HOW MANY SESSIONS WILL I NEED?
During the Initial Consultation, we will suggest your treatment plan and what might work for you. The frequency and number of treatments will depend on your individual condition, but patients generally come weekly for an initial period of four to six weeks. In order to get the most benefit from acupuncture, it is best to allow for a series of treatments although occasionally just one or two treatments are sufficient. Patients often report unexpected additional benefits, such as better sleep or improved appetite, as well as improvements in their main complaint. Throughout the treatments, Lynda will discuss your progress to ensure you are deriving benefit from the treatment.
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?
To find out if acupuncture can help you, contact us to arrange a FREE 15 - 30 minute assessment.
In addition to needling acupuncture points, traditional acupuncturists use other Chinese medical techniques including:
Moxibustion: Heat is applied to an acupuncture point or channel using moxa, a therapeutic herb. This is usually combined with charcoal to reduce smoke production. The moxa warms and relaxes muscles and induces a smoother flow of Qi and Blood thereby relieving cold and alleviating pain.
Cupping: The tradition of Chinese Medicine cupping dates back over 3,000 years. A flame is used to create a vacuum in a glass cup. The cup is then placed on the area to be treated and the suction draws up the skin. It can be left in one place or moved across an area. This is very effective in moving Qi and Blood in muscles and channels, which relieves pain. Cups can also be used to expel 'pathogenic factors' so it is useful when someone is coming down with a cold for example, as it can prevent the cold developing.
Guasha: This is an ancient Chinese therapy where a smooth edged tool is scraped over the skin to increase the flow of Qi and Blood. It is often used on the neck and shoulder area to relieve tension, or down the thigh to receive sciatic pain.
Tui Na: Chinese therapeutic massage named after two of its techniques, Tui and Na, which translate as 'push pull'. It uses Chinese Medicine theory in the same way as acupuncture but the treatment is delivered using a variety of massage-style techniques rather than needles. It can be used to relieve muscle tension, open channels and stimulate the flow of Qi and Blood. Lynda sometimes combines tui na with needling, although it can be used as a standalone treatment. However, foot reflexology massage has its roots in ancient China. It was already flourishing over a thousand years ago in the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) and was bought to the West during the late Manchu Dynasty (1643-1912 AD).
Foot tui na works through the acupuncture points and channels. It uses the same principle as acupuncture: good health depends on the smooth and unimpeded flow of the body’s energy (Qi). Any imbalance, physical or emotional, can block this flow thereby disrupting the equilibrium. Foot tui na can thus be used in similar ways - i.e. to address specific problems, by exploiting the correspondences between zones on the feet and zones on the body; to support good health or as a means of relaxation.
Tui na can also be used just on the hands. It is particularly powerful on the feet and/or hands as the points located here are the starting or end points of the acupuncture channels. Here the Qi is close to the body surface and thus easier to influence. In addition, one of the most influential points on each channel, called the “source point”, is found around the ankle or wrist.
Lynda trained at the College of Integrated Chinese Medicine gaining a BSc (Hons) in Acupuncture accredited by Kingston University. She practices a combination of the two main styles of traditional acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Five Element. She has also completed a post graduate diploma in Tui Na, a form of acupressure massage. She often combines this with needling to release physical or emotional tension.
With over 25 years of experience, Brendagh has had notable success in treating a wide variety of conditions. She has particularly enjoyed assisting with fertility (male and female) and hormonal imbalances as well as treating musculo-skeletal problems (both acute and chronic).
Currently, she also works at Penny Brohn Cancer Care offering acupuncture support to people dealing with the side effects of active cancer treatment.
Brendagh initially studies at the College of Traditional Acupuncture (CTA) as the time of Professor JR Worsley, and so is trained in the deep constitutional diagnosis of the Five Element style. Her later studies at the College of integrated Chinese Medicine (CICM) added syndrome and substance differentiation of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This enables her to be as adept at working with emotional development as with physical conditions of pain.
*Like with all other services at Cowan House, we must implement a 24 hour cancellation policy. Therefore if you do need to cancel please ring reception on 01934 643262. If cancellation does not take place within the 24 hours prior to the appointment time, we will be unable to give a refund.