Acupuncture for older adults

We’ve all heard of – or experienced – growing pains as a kid or teenager. But growing older can be hard work too.If we’re honest, we generally start to slow down from our 40s and things stop working quite as well as they used to.  The great news is that whether you’re 45 or 95, acupuncture is perfect for every body. No matter your age, shape or health condition/s, acupuncture can help you feel better at any age. It is especially helpful for older people / elders / seniors (I don’t want to offend anyone….) to help increase flexibility and mobility, reduce stiffness, relieve pain, and boost energy. How it worksAcupuncture is a gentle, natural approach to help treat the aches and pains in aging bodies.  Instead of treating symptoms, acupuncture helps naturally treat the source of your pain, without medication.As a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) acupuncturist I use very fine disposable needles (the width of a human hair) inserted into specific points on your energy pathways.  A treatment usually consists of 6-10 needles in your arms and legs. It helps relieve symptoms by rebalancing your system.  You can use acupuncture on its own, or alongside medication.There is no age limit for treatment – everyone from babies to the elderly may benefit. Most people are surprised at how painless and effective acupuncture can be. What can Acupuncture help with?The World Health Organisation recommends acupuncture for many conditions and complaints.   It has a long history of pain relief. Peer-reviewed, scientific journals have shown that acupuncture can deactivate pain at the source by changing local endorphin levels and is as (if not more) effective than morphine for pain relief.Acupuncture can be effective at treating a wide range of ailments (too many to cover here) so here are just some of the conditions I can help with: Increased mobility and flexibilityPain relief – arthritis, nerve pain, neuropathy,Back and body pain – neck and back pain, injuries, sprains, strains, frozen shoulder, carpal tunnel, sciatic nerve pain, tennis elbowRespiratory –colds and flu, asthma, bronchitis, COpd, sinus problem, hay fever and allergiesDigestive – constipation, diarrhoea, irritable bowel syndrome, haemorrhoids, heartburn, reflux,  nausea, Crohn's disease.Bladder health – UTIs, kidney health, bladder leakage, and prostate issuesHeart health – palpitations, high and low blood pressure, angina.Mental Health – depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, insomniaHealthy eyes – conjunctivitis, cataracts, and other eye issuesOther – shingles, skin conditions, general immune boosting, tinnitus, post-stroke syndrome, hair loss What you need to knowI work alongside your medication and medical provider including your GP, specialists, and more. I am a recognised ACC treatment provider which means if you have had an accident or suffered an injury you can come straight to me for treatment, without needing a referral from your doctor.I am a registered Acupuncture NZ member. If you’re of age, Gold Card discount applies.For more information on how I can help you on your journey to wellness, or to make a booking, please get in touch.​

SO HOW DOES ACUPUNCTURE WORK?

Chinese medicine looks at the body from an entirely different perspective. We look at the body in holistic terms as a system of meridians and organs which need to work in balance and harmony for optimal health and well-being. We look to the root cause of why something is happening and work to correct the imbalance, rather than just treating the symptoms.Meridians are energy channels throughout your body carrying energy or Qi (pronounced chee). Acupuncture unblocks and moves the Qi through the body’s systems including the nervous, respiratory, circulatory, muscular, and digestive systems.There are twelve main meridians – Bladder, Kidney, Liver, Gall Bladder, Heart, Small Intestine, Triple Warmer, Pericardium, Spleen, Stomach, Lung and Large Intestine. They connect to the organ or system they are named after, but also have emotions that relate to them as well. So we are treating not just physical issues or ailments, but on an emotional level as well.During a treatment, fine needles (the width of a piece of hair) are inserted into points to stimulate the body’s nervous system to balance Qi. Each acupuncture point has certain actions.You remain clothed on the treatment table and I work with points predominantly in the legs, feet, arms and hands (so rest assured, I won’t be prodding and poking into areas you aren’t comfortable with).It may seem odd to have needles placed in your legs if you are having stomach pain, but trust me it works!I use sterile single use needles which are disposed of immediately after removal.Most new patients are amazed how painless acupuncture is – the thought is worse than the reality. You may feel some heaviness, tingling or electric sensation either around the needle or travelling up or down the affected energy pathway or meridian. But often there is no sensation at all and the needles are completely painless.Depending on the type of treatment you have received, you may feel very relaxed and calm or you may feel revitalized and more clear-headed.It is not unusual to feel like resting after a treatment and occasionally your symptoms may flare for a short time before settling. Generally the effects of the treatment will be more obvious the following day.​

SCIATICA 

Sciatica can be such a pain in the butt. And lower back, hips, legs, feet, even toes!  According to the Southern Cross, over 40% of kiwis will suffer from it at some time. With sciatic pain sleeping, sitting, walking, bending, turning or standing maybe difficult. You may have pain down the back of the thigh, butt, lower leg, ankle and toes. You may have burning, numbness, pins-and-needles in one or both legs.  Exercise and stretching is great to manage it, but acupuncture can also hugely help – especially when you are in a lot of pain with it.  Studies show acupuncture is as effective, if not more so, than morphine (and doesn’t have the side effects) so I can help get you out of pain fast.  It also helps address the issues that are causing the sciatica to begin with.   You don’t have to suffer with sciatica. Get in touch and find out how acupuncture can help you move on with life pain free. ​

HEALTHY SLEEP

Insomnia isn’t fun and there’s a reason sleep deprivation is used as a form of torture.Now while it might seem counter intuitive to stick needles in you to help you sleep, research shows that acupuncture can help with your zzzzz’s to help get you to get to sleep and stay asleep.A study of volunteers with anxiety and insomnia revealed that acupuncture increased the night time levels of the “sleep hormone” melatonin. At the end of the trial anxiety levels were significantly lower and sleep efficiency had increased. Both sleep quality and sleep time had improved considerably.If you regularly wake at a certain time it can be your body talking to you telling you things are not as optimal as they could be. From a Chinese Medicine point of view, these are very telling signals from your body that you are out of balance. For example:Waking regularly between 1 – 3am can be a sign your liver needs some TLC, you are holding onto a lot of anger, or you have an overload of toxins.Waking up regularly between 3 – 5am can be sign your lung meridian is out of balance or you have a lot of grief and sadness. Acupuncture can help get your system and emotions balanced so you can sleep soundly through the whole night. It also helps with insomnia, sleep disturbances and overall energy levels.

TRYING TO GET PREGNANT?  AVOID THESE APPS…

A period tracking app can be a great tool.  Except if you are trying to get pregnant. If you are trying to have a baby, the evidence so far suggests don’t rely too heavily on an app.  Especially if you are finding it hard to conceive.   A recently Australian study (yet to be published) looked at the 36 most common apps in Oz and found that less than 43% actually got it right at predicting ovulation correctly.   Factors including exercise, weight, diet, and ethnicity all play a role in a woman’s menstrual cycle and chances of a couple conceiving.  An algorithm can’t capture all factors that affect fertility. https://theconversation.com/planning-a-baby-a-fertility-app-wont-necessarily-tell-you-the-best-time-to-try-123779?fbclid=IwAR2DvhulT_a_Gqj3517Iu3jiLO-th3DJGSUo6xkhZPkjImrNYgQMtSfvxjQI specialise in working with women – and couples – who are struggling to get pregnant.  More and more research shows that acupuncture helps treat infertility. It can be used on its own to help balance hormones and boost your system, or in conjunction with other fertility treatments (and it can also help reduce symptoms if you are taking fertility medication).FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK

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Dirk Weishaupt - Blog

Dirk Weishaupt Acupuncture