Improved Health Begins Here
Your Path to Wellness
I offer a natural and holistic approach to medicine. I’m a Registered Acupuncturist and Certified Naturopath based in St. John's, Newfoundland. I believe in the power of healing through natural, healthy alternatives, and as a complementary means to western medicine. I’m an educator and a healer, with the mission to teach each patient about the natural healing powers they hold within.
My goal is to provide you with a fresh approach to health and wellness using acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), which includes traditional modalities. Whether you have pain or another health concern, I will take the time to thoroughly talk with you, assess you and provide you with personalized treatment that will best meet your needs.
I view the entire body as one integrated system. I believe in treating the whole person, as we are a sum of all our parts. When there is something out of balance it will eventually, if not already, affect other areas. I aim to help restore balance and prevent further symptoms. I may address several issues during your course of treatment.
Using the innovative techniques of TCM and my years of experience, I treat and manage a variety of conditions. Please contact me should you have any questions about specific health concerns. Some conditions I treat include:
Acute and chronic pain
Injuries through accidents
Fertility (male & female)
What To Expect
Your initial visit will take just over an hour (including required paperwork and consultation). It will typically include an assessment of your main complaint and any secondary issues through detailed health questioning, physical exam, possibly a TCM tongue examination accompanied by a Chinese pulse analysis, opportunity for questions, then first treatment.
I strive to make you fully informed of what you can expect and to put you at ease. I love what I do and I know the wonderful benefits that are possible. Because of this, I love for your sessions to be as relaxing as possible, that you feel comfortable with me as your practitioner and able to trust in what I do. Please don't hesitate to ask questions during your treatment... I really enjoy explaining all about this amazing medicine.
A treatment is tailored to your personal needs and diagnosis from a TCM perspective. Depending on your reason for visiting, there could be just acupuncture or, additionally, any number of related modalities (cupping, gua sha, moxibustion, etc.) used. I will discuss and explain all therapies that I may be using with you during a session. I incorporate acupuncture with other modalities because they are all tools of TCM that, when combined, will give you the greatest benefit.
With children, I may or may not use needles depending on their level of comfort. I will often employ acupressure and other modalities that will be effective in these cases.
Follow-up sessions will be about an hour or less.
ACUPUNCTURE & HOLISTIC SERVICES
DIRECT BILLING AVAILABLE
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
The philosophy in TCM is that if you have symptoms, then you have an imbalance. Energy, known as Qi, should flow smoothly and uninterrupted in pathways throughout the body, called meridians. Symptoms arise due to a disturbance of Qi. TCM and its modalities (acupuncture, fire cupping, dietary therapy, gua sha, herbals, etc.) are used, often in conjunction with one another, to regulate the flow of Qi, stimulating your body's natural ability to heal itself. Due to the very nature of TCM's diagnostic techniques, it can be very effective in treating current issues and to ward off, or slow down, potential future problems of which the body is only beginning to show subtle signs. Because of this, TCM is great to use as a preventative medicine, to help keep your body in the best possible health for years to come.
Acupuncture is a part of a comprehensive field of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that has been effectively used for more than 4000 years. As a part of holistic medicine, it nourishes the mind, body and spirit. It is used to treat imbalance in the body through the insertion of fine filiform needles into specific areas of the body.
Upon devising a TCM diagnosis, I will choose acupuncture points based on their individual actions and combinations, called a point prescription. The acupuncture needles, once inserted into the points, regulates the flow of Qi (pronounced "chee"), bringing balance to the body. Sometimes, especially with small children, acupressure is used on the points in lieu of needles.
Acupuncture is often used in conjunction with other TCM therapies (modalities) for the greatest benefit.
Fire cupping is an important and popular modality of TCM. It involves creating a suction from specialized cups which are placed on the skin. An oil, applied to the skin, is used for sliding the cup, but it can also be retained in one area. Fire cupping is the traditional method which utilizes controlled fire on an alcohol-soaked cotton ball to create a suction in glass cups . Cupping is used to relieve tight/contracted muscles, treat fascia issues, improve circulation and lymph flow, sedate the nervous system, reduce anxiety, promote relaxation, reduce inflammation, treat migraines, arthritis, tendonitis, colds, lung issues, cellulite and more.
Because cupping is a suction on the skin, and thus brings blood to the surface, you may have "cupping marks" which looks like bruising, but is actually petechiae, that may range from light pink to red to purple-back. No matter the amount of colour, or lack of colour, this is completely normal. The colour that arises is diagnostic for me, showing me what is happening in the area from a TCM perspective. The marks will fade within a few days to a week as the body continues its healing process.
Based upon an ancient technique, gua sha is in integral part of TCM. It involves the use of a unique tool, that is most often ceramic, jade or horn, to apply pressure to the skin, or scrape the skin, to achieve the desired results. During gua sha, a lubricating medium, such as oil, is used. The tool is used to apply short or long strokes that may create a redness or petechiae on the skin, of which is called the sha. Gua sha is often used as a directed treatment for pain, particularly muscle issues. It's used in blood stagnation conditions in which it “moves” the blood, bringing circulation, therefore healing elements, to the tissues. It also aids in treating fascia conditions and lymph flow, plus a great tool to lengthen and release contracted muscles/tendons. Gua sha is also indicated for respiratory conditions, flu, colds and fever.
Moxibustion involves burning the dried herb, mugwort (Artemisia Vulgaris), near specific points on the body. It is an important modality of TCM that is used to treat certain pain conditions, used in obstetrics and gynecology (particularly to turn a breech baby and resolve "cold" conditions in the uterus), provides immunity enhancement to prevent and treat colds and flu, used in digestive conditions and more. Moxa comes in several forms but the most popular clinic application involves using a moxa stick, shaped much like a cigar.
Dry needling is used for musculoskeletal conditions in which there is pain and contraction in a muscle. The acupuncture needle is often inserted directly into an acupuncture point but also into trigger points known as "ashi points." A special manipulation is used upon insertion. The purpose of dry needling is to elicit a muscle response, or "twitch," in which the muscle "releases." This diminishes overall pain and restores muscle function by releasing the contraction through a physiological response.
Tui Na Massage
Tui Na (pronounced “twee na”) is a form of Chinese manipulative body therapy often used in conjunction with acupuncture and other TCM modalities. Literally, it means “pinch” and “pull”. It is a combination of massage, acupressure and manipulation of the body to affect muscles and ligaments that are in disharmony. Various techniques are performed through rolling, pressing, pulling, pinching and rubbing.
TCM nutrition is essential for a healthy life and to treat specific issues within the body, in addition to your acupuncture treatment. Recommendations are based upon your diagnosis in TCM. What may seemingly be healthy to eat, may not be right for your specific needs. When I address dietary, I will make personalized suggestions and recommendations which may include specific foods, food combinations, herbs and/or supplements. I also make suggestions based on seasons and which foods most naturally complement the energetics that we’re trying to obtain, to keep you at your healthiest throughout the year.
Herbals & Supplements
Another integral part of TCM is the use of herbals. These may be in an edible form such as a tablet, tincture, powder, syrup or tea, that I may suggest based on your diagnosis. Herbals may also be in the form of topical application, particularly for skin and muscle issues. Some, I may recommend you acquire, some I will use on you during a session. This part of TCM is one in which I have plans to explore deeper within my studies so that I may bring you a wider range of choices and benefits.
I may also recommend certain supplements based on your condition. These are less a part of pure TCM but a blend of Eastern meets Western, and pertains to your presentation, specific health issues and goals for wellness. These may include western herbals, vitamins, minerals or specific prepared combinations.
I treat holistically, meaning I consider the body, mind and soul as one entity. Holistic counseling can combine, in addition to in-office treatment, recommendations which may pertain to remedial exercise, self-care, lifestyle advice, and more. It may apply to your physical well-being, but also to your mental-emotional-spiritual wellness, depending on you as an individual.
Infrared Heat Therapy
Infrared heat therapy involves the use of a TDP lamp, a specialized lamp with a ceramic plate which contains a variety of minerals. The TDP lamp is often used during a typical treatment, most often for pain or "cold" conditions. The infrared heat penetrates deep into the body tissues which promote healing.
Cosmetic acupuncture, or facial rejuvenation, is a beauty and wellness treatment that reduces the signs of aging while revitalizing the skin and treating the body. Very fine needles are placed into specific areas of your face to help lift, reduce wrinkles, treat conditions such as acne and rosacea, and improve skin tone. The needles stimulate the production of collagen and increase blood flow so that your body may heal itself, particularly through the creation of micro injuries. They also release tension in facial muscles and increase tonicity in those that are too lax. In TCM, areas of the face are related to internal organs. Specific signs on the face gives me insight into what needs to be treated in your body. Therefore, I will also needle body points which are specific to your condition to bring you overall balance and wellness.
A cosmetic acupuncture treatment with me may include, in addition to needles, light facial gua sha, mini cupping, the use of natural oils/lotions and massage.
Reiki is a form of energy healing that consists of laying hands on the body, or over the body, to free the flow of energy and clear blockages in the chakras. It allows life energy to flow through me, into my hands and into your body. I am not the source of this energy, but a conduit for the life force energy that surrounds us. Reiki may be used in any condition that requires healing – mental, emotional or physical. I will perform full Reiki treatment, if requested. However, the Reiki energy is present during my treatments with acupuncture and TCM so I feel this is a wonderful enhancement during a session. I may concentrate more on flowing the energy during an acupuncture treatment when the need arises, particularly with emotional-mental disorders such as anxiety, depression and PTSD.