You know the old adage,
“When you don’t think you have time, that exact moment is when it’s needed the most.”
Here are some general guidelines for determining treatment frequency:
In the time of the Classics, circa 2600BC, The Huang di Neijing (entitled “The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine” in one of the latest translations) is an ancient treatise on health and disease said to have been written by the famous Chinese emperor Huangdi. It is said that the physicians historically were tasked with keeping their patients healthy and in turn, would earn their wage. It was only when a patient fell ill that the physician missed out on a pay check.
In our breakneck, unsustainable, Capitalist society, we have it completely backwards. Our lives have become so overloaded that many fall victim to seeking treatment only after our bodies have fallen out of balance. The focus has slipped into being REACTIVE rather than PREVENTATIVE, which is so counterintuitive to how the ancestors of Chinese Medicine used to roll. Our modern take is to use the Community Acupuncture model to disrupt this treadmill of constant productivity and instead, provide a safe(r) and accessible space for our community to experience intentional, restorative and meaningful rest.
If you are unfamiliar with the wonders of Community Acupuncture, in a nutshell, it is acupuncture treatments offered in a supportive group setting at $30-60 sliding scale rates. We provide treatments consisting of distal points (arms, legs, head, ears) while comfortably lying in zero gravity recliner chairs.
Acupuncture is a dose dependent therapy and the benefits are achieved by frequency, and less so by individual doses. Consider how we take medications and supplements, learn a new skill or start an exercise routine – all of these things require COMMITMENT in order to reap the benefits. Therefore, committing to an appropriate treatment plan is key in assisting the gradual process for resolving symptoms and promoting recovery. Our community model makes it more accessible and affordable for clients to receive as much treatment as often as they need AND we will regularly encourage and support our clients in doing so.
Committing to a regular course of treatment provides:
- Faster relief from your condition(s);
- A reduction in the chances of reaggravation;
- A more effective recovery following reaggravation;
- A way for your body to build a “memory” of how to re-establish its internal balance so you can better weather life’s ups and downs;
- A useful tool to support you through stressful periods and/or life transitions;
- The ability to maintain quality of life for individuals living with chronic, long-term conditions;
- PREVENTION of future illness or injury!
We will always strive to meet our clients where they are regardless of their condition – BUT, it is much less stressful for client + practitioner when the condition isn’t a 10 out of 10. Many struggle with maintaining a regular course of treatment and/or only visit us when they’re at the end of their rope. Infrequent treatment yields inconsistent or insufficient results and you miss out on experiencing the full potency of what acupuncture can do for you. It can also be more stressful on your body to keep swinging between recovery and reaggravation. While many of you have experienced some euphoric results from a single acu-nap, we can assure you, regular treatment = better, longer lasting results!
So, what’s the big deal about maintenance?
It is the ultimate goal of a course of treatment! It’s when a client has committed to regular treatment and their specific condition is no longer regularly disrupting their life. They can now book appointments with the intention to PREVENT future illness or reaggravation. We can also shift our focus onto treating other conditions too. They have received enough treatment that they not only have become well, they are now receiving treatment to STAY well :)
When I chat with a client to determine what to treat and when they reply, “I’m doing great, I’m just here because I feel like a rest!”, I know that they are using acupuncture just as our ancestors intended :)
~Christina Chan, R.Ac.