Just Lynn

One woman. One name. One hell of an attitude!

moxibustion

Written By: witchypo - Nov• 03•13

Well, finally got smart the other day and called my acupuncturist, Dr. Sally. I hadn’t seen her in a couple of years, so we visited for a bit and then she asked what brought me to her.

‘Pain’, I told her, and explained my last set of treatments kept me practically pain free for months, which was impressive considering my age and arthritis, but that lifestyle changes combined with the strain of keeping up with work, my house, and the rest of the daily grind had lead to multiple strains and injuries. That caused pain and inflammation which made exercise difficult, and the situation snowballed from there.

Of course, I’d figured it was arthritis, and put off going to my GP because I didn’t want to be put back on long-term medications. Eventually, it got bad enough, though, that I went to my doctor and found out that it was tendonitis, for which he prescribed muscle relaxants and massage therapy. Without medical insurance, however, I needed treatment I could both afford and trust, so I’d decided that accupuncture was my best bet.

As I filled her in, Dr. Sally checked me out, and told me that multiple incidental strains had caused scar tissue to build up in my muscles and that the best way to deal with it was moxibustion. Then, as she pin-cushioned me with needles, she explained that she’d be attaching moxa (small rolls of ‘paper’ wrapped mugwart) to some of them, and burning it as part of the therapy.

”Moxibustion stronger medicine,’ she said. ‘Heat from moxibustion melt scar tissue. Work faster.’

Picturing Captain Jack’s smoldering beard in the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ movies, I chuckled, but agreed, and next thing I knew, I was sitting in a chair, stuck full of needles, with tendrils of smoke rising from my shoulder.

As usual, Dr. Sally asked for feedback, so I ‘canned’ the jokes and tuned into my body.

What I found was that, far from painful, the smoldering moxa rolls were sending a gentle, soothing warmth down the length of the needles and into the sorest of my muscles.

‘Wow! It’s like soaking it in a hot tub…’ I told her, ‘or when you get an epidural and you can feel the drugs flowing into your spine…!’

‘Moxibustion good medicine,’ Dr. Sally grinned, and sent me home with instructions to relax and keep the treated areas warm to encourage healing.

That night, I still experienced pain, but it was bearable. The following day, however, was the first in months that I was almost pain-free for the majority of the day!

Since then, I’ve had two more treatments using moxa burned on needles (as well as in a moxa box), and ‘cupping’ (another form of acupuncture therapy). What I’m finding is that, while the pain hasn’t disappeared, it has become less frequent and acute, and that it last for less time than prior to treatment. This is encouraging, and I’m excited about the opportunity to learn more about moxibustion, as well as other alternative treatments.

Perhaps I’ll continue to post bits and pieces on the topic, too, to remind myself in future that I shouldn’t ‘put off’ getting help when I need it(?)

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