Tag: acupuncturist sydney

Diet & Digestion

Seed Cycling for Hormonal Balance

What is Seed Cycling?

Seed cycling is a natural way to gently support your hormones throughout your menstrual cycle. Certain seeds are high in particular nutrients and fatty acids that help to promote hormonal balance. The aim is to boost estrogen during the first phase of your cycle, then boost progesterone in the second phase. It is believed that seed cycling can assist conditions such as PMS, promote fertility, and even help alleviate pain from medical conditions such as PCOS and endometriosis.

Our menstrual cycles are comprised to two main phases: The follicular phase (day one to ovulation) and the luteal phase (after ovulation to menstruation).

Check out my previous post on how to live in accordance to your cycle! Seed cycling is just one of the many methods!

Follicular Phase (day 1 to ovulation)

The follicular phase begins on the first day of your menstrual cycle (when you start bleeding). The follicular phase is named so because it is the time of the cycle where the follicles in the ovary develop and mature. During menstruation, our estrogen levels build up gradually, reaching a peak around ovulation. Estrogen is primarily made by the developing follicles in the ovaries. Sometimes, our estrogen levels can be too high. Symptoms of high estrogen levels include irregular periods, bloating, breast swelling and tenderness, pre-menstrual headaches, fatigue, sluggish metabolism, PMS and much more. To boost estrogen in this part of the cycle, we eat 1 tablespoon (freshly ground) flax seeds and pumpkin seeds per day.

+ Flax seeds (linseeds)

To support our estrogen levels, we use flax seeds (which are high in plant-based estrogens: phytoestrogens). These adapt to what your body’s needs by modulating the activity of estrogen. This means that it can help to either increase or decrease estrogen activity, depending on deficiencies or excesses of estrogen in the body (4). If estrogen levels get too high, the lignans in flax seeds are able to bind to excesses to help eliminate them from the body.

 + Pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

Zinc is an essential mineral needed in our diet, yet many people do not eat enough of it. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc, which supports progesterone production and regulates our androgen levels (male hormones) (3). Pumpkin seeds (as well as flax) are also rich in essential nutrients and fatty acids such as zinc and selenium, which are considered as the building blocks needed to produce healthy, happy hormones (1).


Luteal phase (day 15 to day 1)

The luteal phase begins right after ovulation. If you are unsure when you ovulate, you can start the luteal phase on Day 15 (as Day 14 is the average day of ovulation amongst women).

Estrogen drops right after ovulation and progesterone begins to rise to build up your endometrium (the lining of your uterus). Estrogen also begins to increase here to prepare for menstruation and those with high estrogen levels may experience period pain and/or PMS symptoms at this time. Progesterone is the Yin to estrogen’s Yang, meaning that they are like opposites which depend on and balance-out one another. At this time in the cycle, we need to boost progesterone to keep estrogen in check. We do this by eating 1 tablespoon each of sunflower and sesame seeds daily from the day after ovulation to day 1 of the period.

+ Sesame seeds

Sesame seeds are high in zinc, calcium, magnesium and selenium, which (with fibre) assist the Liver in detoxification and excretion of excessive hormonal build-up (5). These seeds also contain lignans, and have been found to be beneficial for balancing women’s hormones, even through menopause (6).

+ Sunflower seeds

Sunflower seeds contain a range of great minerals, including vitamin E, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper and selenium. They also contain essential fatty acids which can be converted in to gamma-linoleic acid, or GLA. It has been found that GLA’s provide effective relief from pre-menstrual breast tenderness (2), whilst also boosting progesterone and reducing inflammation.

We live in nature, and nature lives within us.(9)

Quality is key!

When buying your seeds to start cycling them, make sure you opt for organic, whole seeds. The best way to ensure the seeds keep all of their benefits is to grind them yourself, then keep any excess in the fridge, which preserves the essential fatty acids within them. Flax seeds in particular can be a little picky, and are sensitive to light and heat. Try to find whole flax seeds that aren’t in a clear bag or container, then store them in the fridge to keep them happy.

How can I eat these?

You’ll get bored quickly if you just eat these seeds by themselves, so get creative! Try including seeds in your diet with ideas such as:

  • Making some healthy, homemade granola (with seeds mixed in at the end- do not roast them!)
  • Blending them in to your morning smoothie or protein shake!
  • Whipping up a fresh (un-toasted) tahini (I love having this with roasted veg, salads, or carrot sticks).
  • Mixing them into your yoghurt, cereal or porridge.
  • Adding them in to some (protein and/or date) bliss balls for an easy work snack.
  • Sprinkling seeds over your salads for a bit of texture and crunch!
  • Making a fresh seed butter for spreading on toast and fruits.

Some extra things to note

Seed cycling is a natural way of helping your body’s hormonal balance through supplying it with the essential fatty acids, minerals and phytoestrogens it needs. However, because of it’s gentler nature in comparison to other methods, such as medications, seed cycling will take some time to show it’s effects. You may even need to trial a few cycles to really see some changes. In the meantime, you are still treating your body well by nourishing it with a great source of good fats, fibre and minerals!

Some of you may be sick and tired of period pain, acne, hormonal changes after coming off the pill, PMS and more, so while seed cycling might help to start balancing things out for you, you may need something a little stronger and faster. Hormonal imbalances require a holistic approach in treatment to address the multiple factors that they may arise from, such as stress, diet, inflammation and more. I’ve found that acupuncture and herbs are amazing for addressing hormonal health, and seed cycling is only one of the many techniques that I send my clients home with to work on in-between sessions.

To find out how acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine can help you out, send me an email at kiah@healthspaceclinics.com.au.

Or, click the button below to get started with making an appointment!



(1) Bedwal RS, Bahuguna A. (1994). Zinc, copper and selenium in reproduction. Experientia, 1994 Jul 15; 50(7):626-40. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7386123

(2) Horrobin, D. F. (1993). The Effects of Gamma-linolenic Acid on Breast Pain and Diabetic Neuropathy: Possible Non-eicosanoid Mechanisms. Prostaglandins Leukotrienes and Essential Fatty Acids, 48, 101–104.

(3) Jahan, N. A., Dourandish, N., Askary, V. R., Kamachali, A. R. K., Sabbagh, A., & Jahani, F. S. (2011). A potential medicinal importance of zinc in human health and chronic diseases. Clinical Biochemistry, 44(13), S323–S324. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clinbiochem.2011.08.795

(4) Lephart, E. D. (2015). Modulation of Aromatase by Phytoestrogens. Enzyme Research, 2015(c), 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1155/2015/594656

(5) S, L. L. et al. (2011). NIH Public Access, 62(2), 208–219. https://doi.org/10.1080/01635580903305375.Dietary

(6) Wang, T.-A., Wang, N.-H., Kang, Y.-P., Jou, H.-J., & Wu, W.-H. (2018). Sesame Ingestion Affects Sex Hormones, Antioxidant Status, and Blood Lipids in Postmenopausal Women. The Journal of Nutrition, 136(5), 1270–1275. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/136.5.1270


TCM and Acupuncture Facts

1. Chinese Medicine has been around for over 2100 years!

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) involves a range of medicine practices that were developed in China around 2000 years ago. The earliest known record of Chinese Medicine is in the Huangdi Neijing (The Yellow Emperor’s Inner Classic) from the 3rd Century BCE.

2. You can fit 20-30 acupuncture needles inside a hypodermic needle/medical syringe.

Many people fear that acupuncture is a painful treatment, however, acupuncture needles are very small and often painless- some are the size of a human hair! Commonly used sizes range from 0.12-0.25mm, so you can actually fit 20-30 acupuncture needles in the opening of a medical syringe! (1)

3. Acupuncture doesn’t only help pain.

Although acupuncture has been found to be effective for pain conditions such as chronic low back pain and headache (2), acupuncture has been used for centuries for a wide range of conditions. I have seen great results in the clinic in areas of women’s health and fertility, mood disorders, sleep issues, digestive health, skin conditions and much, much more! Chinese Medicine is a holistic, complete system of medicine that focuses on providing balance to the whole body, which means TCM practitioners are trained in assisting all of your health concerns.

4. Chinese Medicine treatments are completely tailored to you and your body!

Traditional Chinese Medicine is highly individualised, meaning that two people with the same symptom may receive very different acupuncture points, physical therapies and/or herbs. A comprehensive health history and understanding of your body is needed to make a diagnosis in TCM, and treatments will differ to address what your body needs.

5. TCM Practitioners undergo extensive professional training.

To become a Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner, you must complete a four to five year full-time Australian bachelor degree program in acupuncture and/or Chinese herbal medicine. These courses provide a comprehensive knowledge of both Traditional Chinese Medical and Western Medical theory and practice. All Australian acupuncturists are registered with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and accredited by another independent Health association.


Living in accordance with your menstrual cycle- Chinese Medicine

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Why should I care about my menstrual cycle?

Understanding your cycle and reproductive health as a woman (or person with female reproductive organs) is a form of empowerment, and provides a level of deeper understanding and connectedness to your body that is not always taught in schools. Chinese Medicine understands the period as a vital sign, where changes and irregularities indicate an imbalance in the body and/or disease.

How does Chinese Medicine understand the menstrual cycle?

In Chinese Medicine (TCM), the menstrual cycle is a complex ebb and flow of the Yin and Yang energies within our bodies. In Western Medicine, we understand this as hormonal fluctuations that enable the development and release of matured follicles for either conception or loss via a period on a monthly basis.

Yin and Yang are interdependent energies that act as complementary opposites which create a whole. Yin is more related to stillness, night-time, cooling and calmness. Yang, on the other hand, relates to movement, day-time, warmth and expressiveness or exuberance. Within the body, the Yin is understood as the structure; the body itself, whilst the Yang is the energy and physiological action that drives its functions.

What TCM also understands is how we can complement these Yin and Yang fluctuations by living in accordance to our cycle. We can change the way we eat, move and live to help ensure our bodies support our menstrual cycle each month.


Our bodies throughout our cycle: Western vs. Chinese Medicine


Phase 1: Period

Hello menstruation! This first phase occurs from day 1 of bleeding. Most women will bleed for around 3 to 5 days, however, anything up to 7 days is considered normal. During our period, the pituitary gland in the brain begins producing luteinising hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), which stimulates the growth of new follicles (small sacs produced by the ovaries). We lose blood due to our uterine lining sloughing off. Blood is believed to be Yin in nature and therefore, we are losing Yin. This is thought of as a more Yin-type phase of our cycle.

How should we live during menstruation?

As highlighted, we need to replace the Yin we lose, and to do this, we need to stay hydrated, warm, and avoid doing vigorous exercise.

  • Don’t deplete your Yin! Enjoy restful activities such as reading, meditation, journaling, cooking and seeing friends and loved ones. If you feel you need to exercise, do some yoga (ideally Yin Yoga) or walking to rebuild your energy gently.
  • Drink lots of tea and water during your cycle. Avoid ice-cold or refrigerated drinks.
  • Stimulate blood circulation through foods like ginger, eggplant, turmeric, seaweed and apple cider vinegar!
  • Eat nourishing, warm and cooked food. Stews, bone broths and soups with veggies, protein and wholegrains are ideal to nourish the blood. Avoid raw, cold foods as these are thought to impede blood flow and create stagnation.
  • Keep yourself warm by placing a hot water bottle or heat pack on your tummy. This can help reduce pain in some women, and also assists blood circulation.
  • Check out my other blog post on period pain to find out ways that you can manage this naturally with acupuncture and more! Here's an article showing good evidence for acupuncture in reducing this pain.


Phase 2: The Follicular phase
(end of menstruation to pre-ovulation)

This phase begins at the end of menstruation, when the follicles produced in phase 1 begin to grow until one becomes the most dominant. The uterine lining (endometrium) also thickens and grows. After menstruation, Blood and Yin need to be replenished and nourished. Yin is depleted by stress, overwork, over-exercising irregular eating, so allowing time for rest (both emotional and physical) is key! This is also a Yin-type phase.

How should we live during our follicular phase?
  • In this phase, many begin to feel more energetic and open. Enjoy having more sex during this time. Light to moderate exercise is recommended, and if you prefer vigorous exercise, make sure you take the time to stretch and refuel, so as not to overdo it.
  • Many feel more extroverted during this phase! So, try new things and meet new people!
  • Ensure you get enough sleep, which helps us to restore our Blood, Qi, Yin and Yang.
  • Eat seasonal fruit and veg and avoid sugary, fried and processed foods. Eat high-quality proteins and lots of good fats to nourish the Blood and Yin. Great foods to eat include dark leafy greens, fish, meats (both white and red), berries, avocado, tahini and nuts/ and seeds.
  • Keep your water intake up.
  • Avoid alcohol, coffee and smoking.


Phase 3: Ovulation

Ovulation generally occurs on day 11-16 of women’s cycles (not only day 14 as commonly thought!), and is affected by a range of factors, including cycle length and physical and mental health.  A surge in LH triggers the release of an egg from the dominant follicle (the one we talked about in phase 2). Yin and fluid levels are at an all-time high, which brings about the appearance of stretchy, fertile mucus (which may look like egg white). This mucus appears to enable sperm to travel to the egg faster. This part of the cycle is thought of as more Yang: warmer and motive, which promotes the release of the egg from the follicles, and allows smooth passage through the fallopian tubes.

This is a transitional phase where we move from Yin to Yang, so live in a more Yang manner!

How should we live during our ovulatory phase?
  • Get moving! Perform exercises that promote blood flow through the hips and pelvis. Moderate to vigorous exercise is recommended here, but make sure not to exercise too excessively, which may disrupt your hormonal balance- always listen to your body. Try activities such as jogging, swimming, cycling, Pilates and resistance training.
  • Avoid emotional stress and bottling emotions up- verbalise your feelings or journal. It is ideal to avoid repressing our emotions at this time to avoid the occurrence or worsening of PMS during our period.
  • Eat lighter foods- enjoy warm salads, plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, fish, chicken, beans, eggs and smaller portions of whole grains or carbohydrates. Use mild spices such as ginger, garlic, onion, shallots and cumin in your cooking to move fluids and promote good circulation. Avoid excessive sugar and dairy.
  • As always, stay warm and stay away from overly cold food and drinks. Avoid alcohol, coffee and smoking
  •  Chinese Medicine and acupuncture are often used to promote ovulation for those with ovulatory issues such as anovulation and infertility. Check out this article on acupuncture for promoting ovulation in women with PCOS.


Phase 4: Luteal phase
(post-ovulation to pre-menstrual)

Here, the follicle that released the egg during ovulation becomes the corpus luteum, a temporary hormone-secreting structure. This structure begins to break down when pregnancy does not occur, and releases progesterone. This is the most Yang phase of your cycle, and (basal body) temperature increase is expected here with all the extra warming energy present! If you do become pregnant, Yang is needed here to provide energy and security to grow and hold the fetus.

As we draw closer to our period, many women begin to experience pre-menstrual symptoms, and may begin to feel more introverted and withdrawn.

How should we live during our luteal phase?
  • Perform light exercise to promote the movement of Qi and Blood to prepare for a smooth period. Opt for walking outside, pilates, yoga and other lighter activities.
  • Treat yourself to a massage or acupuncture session to relax and promote blood circulation.
  • Many women begin to feel emotionally sensitive at this time. Feeling down, agitated and upset are messages from your body, telling you to slow down. Journal your feelings and thoughts or get outside to reduce stress.
  • Eat plenty of the warm, cooked foods that you would during your period. These will help to boost the Yang to get everything in order for menstruation. Slow-cooked meats, stews, soups and broths with vegetables such as sweet potato, carrots, peas, onion, and garlic, as well as herbs and spices such as ginger, rosemary, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Steam some green vegetables such as bok choy, green beans and broccoli.
  • Avoid raw and cold foods and drinks, as well as too much sugar, dairy, alcohol and coffee.
  • If PMS symptoms such as insomnia, pain, depression and digestive problems are bothering you each period, try acupuncture!

Is your cycle irregular; too short or too long?

Have you lost your period?

Do you experience PMS symptoms such as pain, depression, headaches or digestive upset?

Are you preparing to conceive and are unsure how to promote fertility or live with your cycle?

Book in for an acupuncture session today to balance your hormones, restore a smooth menstrual cycle, and look forward to your monthly period rather than dread it!

General Health

Understanding and helping stress with Chinese Medicine


How stress affects the body

In biomedicine:

Life is stressful, and stress is almost unavoidable in the fast-paced, demanding lifestyle of today. The body naturally responds to stressful situations through releasing the hormone cortisol, and initiating the ‘fight or flight’ response, which helps us to make decisions in these situations. However, when stress occurs for long periods of time, and our bodies are constantly in this state of ‘fight or flight’, this can develop in to other conditions such as high blood pressure, chronic fatigue, headaches, digestive issues, anxiety and depression.

In Chinese Medicine

In Chinese Medicine, stress slows and disrupts the circulation of substances through the body, namely Qi and Blood*. The Liver* is responsible for maintaining the smooth flow of Qi, which is why Liver Qi Stagnation is one of the most common diagnoses we make when we see patients with stress. Common physical symptoms we will see for Liver Qi Stagnation include muscular tension (especially of the neck and shoulders), headaches, discomfort in the sides of the ribs and chest tightness. Other symptoms occur as a result of secondary damage to other body systems, which all become affected when our Qi is not circulating as it should. Digestive symptoms such as loose or hard bowel motions, as well as sleep problems, a lack of energy, depression, anxiety and feelings of heat may also occur with excessive stress.

The relationship between stress and these other symptoms is through the organ-channel relationships and interconnectedness of the body’s systems that is seen throughout Chinese Medical theory. This ancient, holistic view of the body only makes more sense as stress and mood disorders become more prevalent in modern society. Many are beginning to opt for natural relief alternatives such as acupuncture and herbs to relieve symptoms of stress and relax the body and mind.

How can Chinese Medicine help?

Scientific research has been performed to investigate the calming effect that many people experience with acupuncture. It has been suggested that acupuncture stimulates the release of and alters the levels of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine, which assists in emotional regulation. A study performed in 2015 by Bosch et al. found that acupuncture is effective for improving quality of life, sleep and mood in people suffering from depression. In my treatments, I work with my patients using a combination of acupuncture, herbs, auricular acupressure and lifestyle advice to help them through the hard times and back on their feet.


*Note- Organs and substances mentioned in this report relate to the Chinese Medicine understanding of Blood or organ-channel system function, not the Western biomedical concepts. As such, unless there is a Western Medical problem, the organs mentioned in this report are unlikely to show up in blood tests or ultra sounds showing dysfunction.

Ask a question or make an appointment

The mind is just as important as the body in health.


Cosmetic Acupuncture: the natural alternative to botox


What is Cosmetic Acupuncture?

Cosmetic Acupuncture is a technique used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to enhance beauty and skin health, dating back almost 2000 years. In modern times, Cosmetic Acupuncture is gaining popularity amongst beauty gurus and celebrities as more people begin to turn to natural alternatives for anti-ageing treatments. It involves the insertion of specialised, thin needles into the face to stimulate the skin and muscles and address concerns such as fine lines and wrinkles, puffy, sagging or dark eyes, dryness, pigmentation, scarring, acne and more!

How does it work?

The needles cause a 'micro-trauma' in the facial skin, increasing blood and lymph flow to the face, which improves cell oxygenation. Cosmetic Acupuncture also stimulates collagen and elastin production, enabling facial rejuvenation. This leads to a variety of amazing benefits, including:

  • Improving the elasticity and firmness of the skin
  • Brightening the complexion and eye area
  • Increasing hydration of the skin
  • Softening scarring and discolouration
  • Lifting areas of sagging and drooping
  • Reducing the depth and appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

What can I expect from treatments?

Most people will experience a quick pinch or dull pain upon needle insertion that goes away after a few moments. However, different people are sensitive to different things, so this sensation cannot be guaranteed to all people. Along with acupuncture, I offer facial cupping, gua sha, jade rolling, facial massage and some herbal masks as a package within my Cosmetic treatments. As the skin replaces itself approximately every 28 days, around 1-2 months of treatments are needed to see the lovely changes happening, depending on your skin concerns and constitution.

Rather than injecting your skin with chemicals, Cosmetic Acupuncture is a wonderful way to achieve a more youthful and glowing complexion naturally. As Traditional Chinese Medicine is quite holistic, extra acupuncture points, known as 'grounding' points found on the body will be needled to address your entire state of health. By addressing other health conditions, such as digestive issues, emotional stresses and hormonal imbalances (which can all contribute to the appearance of our skin!), we can ensure your skin, mind and bodily health are balanced, to achieve a holistic harmony.

Get glowing!

Make an appointment with me for some Cosmetic Acupuncture!

Diet & Digestion

Top TCM tips for healthier eating

Top TCM tips for healthier eating


Supporting the Spleen and Stomach

TCM believes that the Spleen and Stomach are majorly responsible for our digestion and the break down of food/drink. There are many ways we can support these organs so that our digestion works best.

Here are my top Traditional Chinese Medicine tips for optimal digestion:

1.    Eat 80% warm and cooked foods and warm/hot beverages
The body has to work harder to warm up and break down raw and cold foods and cold drinks, so eating foods that are warm and cooked ensures that your Spleen and Stomach can work faster and more efficiently to extract nutrients from what we eat.

2.   Practice moderation; eat until you are around 70-80% full.
When we overeat, our bodies are forced to work harder and faster to try and digest the excess food we eat. A lot of the time, our bodies struggle to handle this extra workload, and this leads to Qi Stagnation. Symptoms of Qi Stagnation include bloating, abdominal pain, gas, indigestion and reflux.

3.    Eat at regular intervals during the day
The Spleen and Stomach work best with a repetitive schedule. If we aim to eat our meals at similar times each day, our body is able to prepare by producing essential enzymes and other substances which help to make digestion that much easier, and run more smoothly.

4. Focus on your meal
When we eat, our minds should be relaxed and focused on our meals. Try to avoid eating when in a rush or on-the-go, stressed, angry or busy. Sit down and appreciate your meals without the distraction of mobile phones, TV, and life's stresses. This will help your organs to digest and absorb the nutrients from your food, and avoid stagnation.

5. Avoid excess greasy, oily, fried and spicy foods
In TCM, too much greasy, oily and fried foods can lead to the formation of what we call Dampness. This is excess fluid that can result in symptoms of loose bowel motions, heaviness of the limbs and bloating. Too much spicy and hot foods such as lamb, chilli and curries can lead to the formation of Heat or Fire within the body. The key is balance.


What to expect from an appointment with me

Yay! You've decided that Chinese Medicine is for you and maybe you've even booked your initial appointment with me. Now what?
1. Making your appointment and arriving at the clinic

If you haven't already made an appointment, send me an email at kiah@healthspaceclinics.com.au or call one of the clinics that you'd prefer, and our lovely receptionist will book you in!

On the day of your first appointment, eat a good breakfast and don't brush your tongue (I'll explain this in the next part!) in the morning. Please arrive 15 minutes early to fill out a 'New Client Form' (unless you have done so online), which can be quite comprehensive and long, but helps me to understand the full picture of your health and you as a person.  After this is completed, I'll greet you and bring you through to our treatment room. We will then sit down and the interview process will begin.

2. The interview process

Now one thing that you should know about Chinese Medicine- our initial interviews are long. We are holistic- and this means that we consider the whole body to make a diagnosis and design a treatment plan that addresses the root of your disease- rather than just one symptom. TCM sees the human body as a system, and when one part of that system is affected, many others become affected too! Together, we will go through your New Client Form, your main complaints, and then a general questioning is performed. These questions include pain, fever or chills, urination, bowel motions, sleep, mental health, gynaecology, digestion, thirst, diet and more.

You may think "Why are you asking me about all of this, if I'm just here for one thing?". Well, we see everything as interconnected, and many times two completely different symptoms may have a deep connection that makes sense to us. All factors of your health help us reach our diagnosis.

3. The tongue, pulse and palpation

In TCM, we use the tongue and pulse diagnostically. The tongue is an interior indicator that we are able to view from the exterior- it tells us about things like heat and the state of your Qi and Blood in your body. The pulse is similar, and we study many  aspects of it to help our diagnosis: the strength, tautness of the artery, beats per minute (BPM), and more. We will also touch (palpate) areas of concern, for reasons such as identifying masses, tightness or other textures.

4. Treatment

After the interview, I will ask you to get ready on the bed while I wait outside, and then cover you with towels. I'll put a few drops of a lovely essential oil in the diffuser, and may heat up a heat pack for you if it's cold. Maybe I'll perform a little Chinese massage, gua sha, or cupping to prepare the area for acupuncture if I think you're needing it. Then, once you're all ready, I'll pop some acupuncture needles into a special selection of points chosen just for your condition.

Acupuncture can feel a little strange for first timers. Upon insertion, you may feel a little pinch or pain that will go away in a few minutes. I'll manipulate your needles gently to achieve a De Qi sensation that may be like tingling, pressure, warmth, pulling or achiness. You may feel emotionally vulnerable or sensitive- this is normal as the needles release physical and emotional stress. You're meant to feel relaxed and comfortable, so let me know if I need to adjust anything before leaving you to relax alone for around 20-30 minutes. When the needles are in, try to relax your mind, meditate, or even take a nap!

5. After your treatment

After checking in with you, I will take out the needles and dispose of them. There may be a little bruise or bleeding, which is normal as we have penetrated the skin, but these will go away.  You may feel a little sleepy or spacey after treatment. Take it easy and don't do any vigorous exercise for the day, acupuncture can be draining and we don't want to overload your body. Also, don't take a shower or swim for at least 3 hours after, as we've opened up your pores and left you vulnerable, so stay cozy!

Acupuncture works best cumulatively- that is, when treatments are regular and results build-up upon one another with each session. We will design a treatment plan that outlines what you want to achieve, how we are going to achieve it, and how long we will aim for to reach your goals. Your next appointment is a review of these findings and our plan. Chronic conditions can take a while to tackle, but with long-lasting results. Usually 6-8 treatments is a good place to start. After six treatments, we will review your progress. At this stage, if you're not completely finished with your healing journey, we will continue and try new approaches. If we both agree that you have healed well, we will plan for (usually monthly or bi-monthly) preventative treatments to keep you on track.

Make an appointment today!

Still unsure? Have any questions?