What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a component of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), a health care system that has been practiced in China for at least 2,500 years. It is based on the idea that there is a vital energy force, or Qi (pronounced chee), that flows through the body and helps to maintain health. Disruption or disharmony in the flow of Qi is believed to cause disease. Acupuncture tries to correct the disruption by stimulating identifiable points that are found close to the skin with pressure, needles, or heat (moxa).
Chinese medical practitioners such as acupuncturists, do not use the standard methods of diagnosis that are common to western medicine. Although past medical history is important, TCM looks at the whole person paying close attention to past and present symptoms, family history, and an in depth analysis of bodily functions. Its own unique method of looking at the tongue and taking the pulse also plays a major role in diagnosis.
This method of diagnosis allows a wide variety of conditions to be treated with acupuncture. While many patients seek out TCM practitioners for treatment of medical conditions, it can also be used to help patients maintain general health and well-being.
What conditions can benefit from the use of Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a form of medicine that has been used to treat most problems for thousands of years. Chinese medicine is in its infancy in the USA, and therefore, most people think of acupuncture as a form of pain management. While this may be true, it can also be used to treat many other conditions. The National Institute of Health (NIH) has indicated that Acupuncture has shown promising results for varied conditions, including:
- Treatment of pain
- Adult post-operative and chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting
- Digestive disorders: gastritis and spastic colon, constipation & diarrhea
- Respiratory disorders: sinusitis, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, recurrent chest infections
- Neurological and muscular disorders: headaches, facial tics, neck pain, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, tendinitis, low back pain, sciatica, osteoarthritis, stroke rehabilitation
- Urinary, menstrual and reproductive problems, and
- Addictions to alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs
Acupuncture can also benefit:
- Women’s issues: PMS, menopause, hormonal imbalances, and infertility
- Depression, anxiety and panic attacks
- Pain associated with arthritis
- Seasonal allergies and food sensitivities
Will my insurance cover Acupuncture?
Acupuncture in general, is not covered by most insurance companies. However, more insurance companies are starting to offer either discount programs or reimbursement. Calling your insurance company is strongly advised.
If you have been in an auto accident or have a worker’s compensation claim, your insurance carrier should be contacted to ensure that acupuncture is covered. Most of these carriers offer acupuncture as a viable option for treatment. If your treatment is covered, you are not responsible for the billing. It will be taken care of by my office.
Some insurance companies will offer reimbursement to their clients, or you may have a medical plan at work which will reimburse you. A receipt will be supplied for your records.
For specific treatment information, please click here.
To download acupuncture forms, please click here.
Louise Bowman, LAc., MSNutr. has been practicing Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine since 1998. She specializes in pain conditions, auto-immune diseases, digestive concerns, women’s health, and weight loss. For more information about Louise, please click here.