What is Acupuncture?

Several thousand years ago, East Asian practitioners discovered that the body forms disharmonies as a result of the various physical and mental stresses of life, including disease. Oriental medical theory explains these disharmonies as an imbalance of opposing forces called yin and yang. This imbalance disrupts the movement of the body's vital energy (qi) along the meridian pathways, which are channels through which the body's qi and blood is thought to flow. Acupuncture restores the optimal balnace of yin and yang, and encourages the smooth flow of qi and blood throughout the meridians and whole body. By inserting and manipulating needles at specific points on the body, I am able to return the body to its natural balance and promote the body's ability to heal itself.

What Does Acupuncture Feel Like?

Many first-time patients are concerned that acupuncture needles will feel like hypodermic injections at the doctor’s office. They won't. Acupuncture uses hair-thin, flexible needles that you will hardly feel when I insert them. When I gently stimulate the needles they may produce a unique sensation that Oriental medicine calls de qi. Patients often describe de qi as a heavy, achy pressure, or spreading, traveling feeling. You may also feel an "electrical" sensation moving down the meridian pathways, though this is less common. Most patients find these acupuncture sensations deeply satisfying and leave the treatment feeling relaxed both mentally and physically.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The benefits of acupuncture are cumulative, so more then one treatment is necessary. For acute conditions you can expect to have 3 to 12 treatments depending on the severity, but you will usually begin to feel relief after just the first few. Chronic conditions may take longer to respond, depending on the type, severity, and duration of the condition. Preventative treatments and treatments for general well-being may also be scheduled on an as-needed basis.

Is Acupuncture Safe?

Yes. Acupuncture is used by millions of Americans every year. Acupuncturists are required to undergo extensive education, totalling more than 3,000 hours, including detailed study of human anatomy and training in Clean Needle Technique. I have passed 4 separate comprehensive national board examinations administered by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM), and I am licensed by the Massachusetts Board of Medicine. As required by law, I use pre-sterilized, disposable, single-use needles to ensure your complete safety.

Your First Visit

When you arrive for your first acupuncture appointment I will ask you to complete a comprehensive intake form. The acupuncture intake form asks questions about your current state of health, past illnesses, and family history. These questions are important because the holistic approach of Oriental medicine takes everything into account. Your current symptoms may not seem related to past health issues, but our bodies are complex landscapes and everything that happens to them leaves its mark.

After reviewing your intake form, we will discuss your condition, and I can demonstrate the insertion of a needle on myslef if you wish. I will then feel your pulse and either examine your tongue or palpate your abdomen, these are 3 of the basic diagnostic methods of Oriental medicine. The acupuncture points I choose will depend on your condition and the initial exam mentioned above, but you can expect approximately 5-10 needles with your first treatment. Once the needles are inserted, I will leave you to lie comfortably for 15-20 minutes with the needles in place. Many people find acupuncture treatment deeply relaxing, and it is not uncommon for patients to fall asleep during this time. In subsequent treatments, I expect to use 10-20 acu-points for treatment, and possibly treat both front and back sides of the body.

What Can Acupuncture Treat?

Acupuncture works by activating the body's own healing powers, so it can be beneficial for many health conditions. The World Health Organization (WHO) has documented many symptoms, diseases, and conditions that have been shown in controlled clinical trials to be effectively treated with acupuncture. Below are some common conditions I can treat, but please feel free to contact me about your specific health condition.

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Pain

  • Sports injuries
  • Muscle pain
  • Back, neck and shoulder pain
  • Leg, ankle and foot pain
  • Arm, wrist and hand pain
  • Knee pain
  • Hip pain
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Jaw pain (TMJ)
  • Dental pain
  • Sciatica
  • Arthritis
  • Tendonitis
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Postoperative pain

Digestive Issues & Nausea

  • Heartburn, Acid Reflux
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Chronic indigestion
  • Chronic loose stools or constipation
  • Peptic ulcer
  • Acute and chronic gastritis
  • Morning sickness
  • Nausea and vomiting

Mental and Emotional Wellbeing

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Depression

Respiratory Complaints

  • Sinusitis
  • Allergies

Reproductive Issues

  • Infertility
  • Increased efficacy of In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

 

 

Sonya Chu, MAOM, LicAc, LMT
Window of the Sky
2400 Mass. Ave., 2nd Floor
N. Cambridge, MA 02140

sonya@windowofthesky.co

(617)767-2987 

Clinic Hours

Tuesday 11:00a-8:00p
Wednesday 9:30a-6:00p
Thursday 1:00p-8:00p
Friday 9:00a-10:30a
Sat. 9:00a-3:00p

Closed Sundays & Mondays