VIRTUAL ACUPUNCTURE APPOINTMENT? HERE’S WHY IT MAKES MORE SENSE THAN YOU’D THINK
Reap The Benefits From Your Couch
These days, it seems like everything can be done virtually. Work, school, concerts, and even doctor’s appointments! But what about a virtual visit to the acupuncturist?
Well, it’s not as crazy as it sounds. That’s because acupuncture is about way more than just needles. So even if you can’t get to your acupuncturist’s office during COVID, there’s no need to worry. You can still get plenty of the benefits from acupuncture without ever leaving your living room. Here’s how.
5 Reasons To Have A Virtual Appointment With Your Acupuncturist
Acupuncturists aren’t just trained to stick needles in your skin. In the US, to be a licensed acupuncturist you need to graduate from an accredited acupuncture school for 3-4 years and have a Master’s degree. While at acupuncture school, they study Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), anatomy, and physiology.
That’s all to say that your acupuncturist can do much more than just acupuncture. They can also perform many of the same services that a TCM doctor would perform, especially when it comes to symptom assessment. So if you’re not feeling the best, a virtual visit with your acupuncturist can help you get to the root of the problem.
A virtual symptom assessment will probably start with your acupuncturist asking you to describe general health related things, like how you’re sleeping, what your diet is like, and if you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort. They’ll also probably look at your tongue to check its size, shape, and color. This can tell them a lot about your overall health and what’s going on with your organs.
So even if you’re not in the same room as them, your acupuncturist can still diagnose you according to TCM and help you find a treatment solution.
Because acupuncturists have years of training in nutrition and health, they can offer help and lifestyle advice to help you restore your inner harmony, get energized, and stay healthy. In TCM, food is medicine, so take advantage of your acupuncturist’s knowledge about what foods and beverages to incorporate into your diet to optimize your health.
During an in-person acupuncture appointment, your practitioner will target specific acupressure points on your body with needles in an effort to manipulate your energy flow and improve circulation.
But even though needles are the most effective way to target these points, you can still get some of the benefits of acupuncture without a trip to the office by performing DIY acupressure. Also known as Tui Na, acupressure lets you tell your body how to turn on its natural healing mechanisms. Not only does this relax muscles, but over time it can ease your symptoms and offer long term relief.
The acupressure points you should be targeting will completely depend on your unique situation and what problems you’re having. For example, if you’re having neck pain or headaches, try targeting the point known as GB21, or Jian Jing. All you have to do is firmly pinch your shoulder muscles with your thumb and middle finger while breathing deeply to relieve the pain. You can do this as much as you want throughout the day to help remove some of that tension that builds up. Your acupuncturist can coach you through locating and manipulating these points even during a virtual appointment.
There are hundreds of acupressure points all over the body, so make sure to ask your acupuncturist what ones are best for you!
Herbal remedies have been a major part of TCM for thousands of years, and today Chinese doctors use them alongside modern medicine to help their clients. Your acupuncturist can also give you some great advice about herbal remedies that will help you address whatever health concerns you’re having.
During a virtual appointment, your acupuncturist might suggest some herbs to take on their own that will help you with everything from getting enough sleep to dealing with seasonal allergies. But they also might prescribe you a personalized mix of different herbs in pill, tea, tincture, or powder form. Even without seeing you in-person, an acupuncturist can still help you find a safe and effective herbal solution.
Self Care Rituals
Self-care has probably become one of the most overused words in the last year or two since we started self-quarantining and working from home. But that’s just because it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re taking care of yourself, body and soul. And an acupuncturist can help you find the right ways to stay sane and healthy.
During a virtual visit, your acupuncturist can teach you about different TCM self-care methods, including:
- Meditation–Meditation is on pretty much every self-care list, but for good reason. It’s great for lowering stress, alleviating anxiety, boosting memory and attention span, and helping you get a good night’s sleep. Your acupuncturist can walk you through how to start meditating, and might even recommend some apps or guided meditations on YouTube.
- Gua Sha—Gua Sha is the latest TCM treatment that’s become a major trend. Using a specially-shaped stone or even just a regular spoon, you can massage out your facial muscles for a relaxing addition to your skincare routine. Plus, it increases microcirculation by 400%!
- Foot Baths–In TCM, the feet are super important. That’s where you can find hundreds of acupressure points in a microsystem that connects to the whole rest of your body! So it’s no wonder that foot baths are a popular self-care ritual in TCM. While you’re watching Netflix or doing some reading, pop your feet in a nice warm foot bath. You can also put in some epsom salt, an herbal tea or essential oils for an added boost. Your acupuncturist can tell you what to add to your bath for the best results.
So does a virtual appointment with an acupuncturist sound less crazy by now? Take advantage of modern technology and find some time to Zoom with your acupuncturist and get the wisdom of a TCM practitioner from the comfort of your own home!.