According to the California State Oriental Medical Association (CSOMA), qi (energy) and blood travel through pathways in the body. The pathways being “somewhat like the nerves and blood vessels,” are known as meridians. There are sixteen main meridians with acupoints on them, which, when needled, directly address various symptoms and imbalances. During a treatment, other lesser known meridians may be indirectly activated from points on other meridians. This indirect, but effective, method opens the affected meridian so qi and blood may freely flow. Direct and indirect approaches are two ways acupuncture can be used in order to establish balanced health.
The Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practitioner will diagnose a client through a variety of assessments: noticing how a person carries themselves and the energy behind how they speak; feeling the pulses on the wrist, which indicate the health of various organs; noticing the shape and color of the client’s tongue, along with the presence or lack of a tongue coating, and its color. All of these situations are indicators of health of the organs or lack of health and are identifiers of the pathogenic (germ) factor that may be involved.
Out of the possible thousand acupoints, a TCM practitioner will choose a certain combination of two to about nineteen and commence the treatment. Although the client may be permitted to sleep for the twenty to sixty minute traditional acupuncture treatment, due to the power of Intent, clients are generally advised to be awake and active participants in Esoteric acupuncture treatments.
Some people who may want to try acupuncture might have concerns about the safety of the needles. To put minds at ease, there is no ointment or medicine on the needles, and the needles are disposable (not reused) and pre-sterilized. With insertion, some sensations may be felt briefly, but overall the treatment will be relaxing and energizing as qi becomes more balanced.
Doctors (MDs) who practice acupuncture on their clients are doing a form of acupuncture referred to as “medical acupuncture.” The CSOMA guidebook says, “The consumer should be aware that unless medical acupuncturists carry the designation of L.Ac., they are not licensed through the California Acupuncture Board.” It is recommended that a consumer interview the medical acupuncturist and ask for credentials in order to ascertain if the practitioner is the kind being sought. Also, a potential client would be advised to ask if the doctor uses an autoclave on reusable needles or the pre-sterilized disposable needles, which are being used by licensed acupuncturists.
For more information, please visit www.csomaonline.org or e-mail Debbie Allsup at Debbie@chasnqi.com