ETPS or electro-therapeutic point stimulation is a means of stimulating acupuncture points without needles. It is a direct current and can be very helpful for musculo-skeletal treatments to assist on relaxing the muscles. It is also useful in trauma areas to help reduce inflammation such as bruising and swelling.
Tuina is an Asian bodywork therapy used for 2000 years. It follows the traditional Chinese medical theory of moving the energy through the meridians. Much like massage as we know it, it relaxes the muscles and tissues to release the tension, pain and allow healing to more easily occur. It is a stronger massage practice however, more like deep tissue, and can be considered a bit rough or get too much movement. When tissues are opened and waste products are released it is not uncommon to have more aches for a few days after treatment. The decision is how long do you want to take to heal? How much pain is OK for an extended time? Tuina can help you move through the process more quickly and regain more comfort.
This process is actually treating disease by causing local congestion.
A partial vacuum is created in cupping jars by the introduction of heat. Remember the science experiment in grade school by creating a vacuum in the jar. A small fire is created with a lit cotton ball soaked in alcohol and carefully and quickly inserted into the jar and removed as the jar is placed over the skin in the area to be treated. (Fire cups). A negative pressure is created.
The blood and body fluids are pulled to the surface where it can be cleared more easily.
Sometimes it is placed over an acupuncture needle at a point. It is not moved during that treatment. It can also be used to massage the tissues over a broader area by applying ointment to the skin first. After a few minutes the cups can be slid around the area to open the tissues more deeply and get more movement.
Cupping warms and dispels cold and damp (TCM diagnosis) and decreases swelling and pain.
For the fire cups glass and bamboo are the most common vessels. The advantage of glass is that you can see what is going on inside the cup.
Also what are commonly used are plastic cups with valves. A syringe is used to suck out the air to the desired amount. These are a little more difficult to clean and the rubber gaskets wear out and can cause leaks.
Moxa the herb Folium Artemesia Argyii – Ai ye in Chinese.
There are a number of forms in which it is processed to be used – loose, stick-on & pole plus variations on these. In any form, moxa is EXTREMELY hot!!!
The poles are dense but fragile like charcoal briquettes. Some moxa is a low-smoke or smokeless variety. This makes it easier to work with.
While it can make it a bit more difficult to breathe, with the smokeless variety it is a great assistant for people with asthma and breathing problems.
Ear seeds and Auricular acupuncture
Auriculotherapy is the stimulation of the auricle of the external ear for the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions in other parts of the body.
The auricle (ear flap) serves as a microsystem in that the external ear is like a microcosm of the whole body, with one part of the body representing the whole body. This phrasing distinguishes a microsystem from the macro-acupuncture system of meridian channels that extend over the whole body and the nervous system connection of reflex pathways that inter-relate different parts of the body. Other microsystems are seen in foot reflexology, hand reflexology, face acupuncture, scalp acupuncture, and iridology.
Ear acupuncture involves using acupuncture needles.
Ear acupressure or ear reflexology is achieved with the application of seeds, magnets or stimulation of points with lasers. Ear seeds can be placed on any ear point to maintain stimulation of that point. It can be used to ‘continue’ the acupuncture treatment after you leave the office and can be a great assistant to your healing.