My Experience With Acupuncture

My Experience With Acupuncture

Titilolami’s Introduction

Ever since reading a study that showed that acupuncture is sometimes better than medicine for the treatment of Alopecia Areata I have been curious. And quite frankly I have also explored it for some other health issues which I will discuss in a future post. I have now read enough to spur me to try it for my damaged edges and to manage my stress levels.

In fact, I had an appointment two Saturdays ago for my first consultation, but an unusual event led me to cancel. I will, however, rebook with the acupuncturist, and I will return to tell you whether it improved my hairline and stress levels. In the meantime, this is a powerful endorsement by a very dear friend of mine Ngozi Fasan. I hope to use this blog to share ideas, methods and practices (within reason and none involving rice water)

Ngozi’s Story

I feared needles but did it anyway

As a child, I had a terrible fear of needles. The thought of injection was so frightening to me. I would tell a lie, rather than admit to being ill.

So how did I find myself lying on a bed in a strange room, with 20 needles sticking out of/into my body? This was ‘Acupuncture.’

It was not something I would consider my thing at one time, but the beauty of life is 'we evolve'. We try new things and find we can be pleasantly surprised by the outcomes.

The journey began at a time when I was going through a tough period at work and in my personal life. My job had become so stressful to the point where I eventually resigned. I also suffered a miscarriage earlier that year which hit me hard. I found out at my twelve-week scan that my baby had no heartbeat. I blamed myself for not taking care of my body.

The impact of these two events started to tell. I noticed a flare-up in my allergies, I had itchy and dry eyes. My hair was limp, my nails brittle and flaky. I had lost weight and often felt anxious.

I eventually got signed-off from work due to stress. It was a much-needed time out to heal but in a way embarrassing. I did not want to sit around at home and sulk during this time. I wanted to improve my health both mentally and physically. That is when I began to explore Acupuncture as a form of holistic therapy.

The plan was to restore balance into my life.

I was already taking Zita West supplements to improve my nutrition but I realized that was not enough. Research has shown that vitamins on their own are not beneficial unless you have a specific deficiency you are targeting.

On the physical front, I was getting more sleep and rest. This helped, but I felt I still needed targeted treatment. I had noticed acupuncture in IVF leaflets in the past. Its links to fertility improvement prompted me to explore it further.

I could get the treatment either at my local private hospital and or at a couple of independent Chinese shops in my neighborhood. But I believed it would be more authentic to get treatment from a traditional Chinese acupuncturist rather than a Western-trained Doctor.

An old Chinese man ran the first shop I went into. A problem was he barely spoke any English. We managed to establish the fact that I wanted Acupuncture. He passed me a price list and availability but I left the store feeling uncomfortable about not being able to communicate with him and most especially about the dust that lined the shelves of herbs. I decided that was not the right place for me.

A Chinese lady ran the next shop I went into. She was very structured in her approach. She requested I register before we could proceed with a detailed consultation. She took notes about my medical history; eating habits, bowel movements, periods, etc. Then she performed a physical exam of my height, weight, nails, tongue, and eyes.

She made two recommendations; a course of Chinese herbs to cleanse my body and Acupuncture to tackle stress and improve fertility.

The part about the herbs was also very tricky for me. The thought of drinking any herbal concoction was pretty much my worst nightmare. The way these herbs smelt was a clear indicator they would not taste any better but I was determined to put mind over matter.

It was not going to be a quick fix; I would need to make modifications to my diet and sleep routine and be consistent with the treatment to see results.

On that day, I paid for seven sessions of Acupuncture and a week's supply of herbal remedies mixed specifically to target my key deficiencies. I would need to boil and sieve the herbs, then drink this liquid twice daily for a month.

Acupuncture itself would start immediately after my period on my first ‘clean’ day. In total the entire treatment was far from cheap. Each session cost £30 and the herbs were £7 per bag. I wanted to give it my best shot at this point, and I was willing to pay the price.

When we eventually started the treatment, it did not turn out to be painful. I would strip my lower half and the thin needles would be tapped lightly into strategic points around my uterus and at different points along my legs. I felt a stinging sensation sometimes and there was a little bleeding when the needles were taken out on occasion. Most of the time it was a tingling sensation or the odd electric shock when a needle was tweaked. For 45 minutes I had to lay still and breathe and relax. This was all that needed to happen.

I did this for three months consistently and saw an improvement in my health. The following year, I repeated this process ahead of my IVF cycle.

I went back to the same lady because we had formed a great relationship. I successfully became pregnant.

Any internet search on Acupuncture points to the fact that there is no exhaustive or conclusive evidence about its effectiveness.

This leaves people apprehensive about the benefits of this therapy. In my case, I was simply following my instincts. I had no personal testimonials to rely on but I was open to what it offered me. I found it to be immeasurably simple and calming. I know it helped me and I would recommend it to anyone looking for alternative therapy.

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