When you call Indigo Healing Acupuncture, the friendly voice you'll hear is Caitlin, our Patient Care Coordinator. Originally from College Station, Texas, Caitlin now resides in Dripping Springs. She ensures our patients are taken care of from the first call throughout their entire patient experience. We are so lucky to have her on the team!
Give us a call at 512-686-0777 to get started today!
Have you been thinking about trying acupuncture? Here are 5 reasons to get started:
Give us a call at 512-686-0777 to start off your new year with the benefits of acupuncture!
Or book online here to see us!
Join us the Saturday after Thanksgiving for once-a-year specials from 10am-5pm. This is the only day of the year for free walk-in consultations (valued at $49), a $70 product credit with purchase of treatment, and special discounts on our bestselling products including exclusive herbal concoctions and handmade artisan soaps. It's a perfect time to pick out thoughtful stocking stuffers and give the gift of health to your friends & family.
If you have children attending school in/near Dripping Springs, then you've likely already heard about the latest virus circulating and keeping kids home 5-7 days with symptoms such as high fever (102 degrees+), lethargy, appetite loss, vomiting and diarrhea. It's no fun, but very common this time of year.
What do you have in your medicine kit to help when a cold/flu virus hits you?
We are now offering a Cold/Flu Relief Bundle in our retail section, no appointment necessary. These are our 2 go-to products for the mornings when you wake up and realize you might be getting sick.
When taken at the first signs of illness (sore throat, runny nose, sneezing, body aches) our Cold Eliminator amplifies the immune system to eradicate the virus. Most of our patients feel completely fine within 48 hours of the first dose.
Cough-B-Gone soothes dry, itchy throats with its natural antibacterial and antitussive properties. Bonus: It also tastes great!
Call us at 512-686-0777 to reserve this Cold/Flu Relief bundle for clinic pickup near Dripping Springs and be prepared when THAT morning comes!
Did you know we offer Holistic Pregnancy Support for...
Dr. Michelle Wendt, L.Ac., DACM was also recently nominated as the Best Acupuncturist and Best Herbalist by the 2019 Austin Birth Awards!
We want pregnancy to be an enjoyable phase of your life! From the first positive test to the end of postpartum, we can help you relieve pain, have more energy, and recover from labor & delivery.
Give us a call at 512-686-0777 to schedule a consultation.
This summer marked our one-year anniversary in Dripping Springs and brought exciting changes to the clinic, including our new Office Manager, Courtney!
Courtney joined our team in late July and is the friendly face you'll meet when you first walk in the door. Originally from South Africa, Courtney now calls Texas home. When she's not in the clinic, Courtney is an avid athlete, working out 7 days a week and inspiring others to get moving!
To accommodate the needs of the Dripping Springs community, Dr. Michelle now treats patients six days a week, Monday through Saturday. In the past year, Michelle provided over 2,000 treatments to children & adults helping them to alleviate chronic pain and illness. If you ask her how she manages to balance entrepreneurship + medicine + family, she'll tell you it's easy to get out of bed in the morning knowing that her work changes lives for the better.
With the 2019-2020 school year kicking off in a few days, we look forward to seeing our returning patients and new faces! Let's make 2020 your best year yet with holistic healing in Dripping Springs!
To schedule a consultation, give us a call at 512-686-0777 or book a consultation online by clicking the box below.
Breastfeeding is a gift, but when mastitis appears, it can quickly become a nightmare. The good news is ancient Chinese Medicine has proven to effectively prevent its onset and boost recovery.
What is mastitis?
Mastitis is inflammation of a milk duct due to infection in a clogged duct. It can arise quickly and will leave you feeling like you’ve been run over by a bus. Common symptoms include acute breast tenderness, an engorged milk duct, red skin over a milk duct, fever/chills, fatigue, and body aches. If left untreated, mastitis can rupture into an abscess requiring surgical intervention. Therefore, it’s important to be as vigilant as you can about clearing clogged ducts.
Mastitis is most likely to occur within the first three months of breastfeeding and is the second most common infection during postpartum (for those who want to know, urinary tract infections are the most common postpartum illness).
The most common Western treatment for mastitis is a course of antibiotics to kill off an overgrowth of Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. S. aureus bacteria is generally transmitted from the baby’s mouth to the breast. If your immune system has been weakened by stress or fatigue, the bacteria can take up residency in a milk duct causing inflammation and engorgement.
How can I prevent mastitis?
Twenty centuries ago, Chinese doctors discovered the root cause of 99% of mastitis infections… anger, frustration, and/or resentment! Have you ever been so mad at someone/something you felt like you might explode with words or burst into tears? Anger is a powerful emotion that literally brings a rush of energetic heat to the body like a flame shooting upwards. According to Chinese Medicine, that is energy (qi) in the Liver meridian looking to escape. If you’re a nursing mama and the sudden rush of Liver qi is not expressed, it lodges in the breasts inflaming milk ducts and establishing ideal conditions for an infection. To prevent mastitis, your best bet is to find a safe outlet for any anger, resentment or frustration. An outlet could be talking to someone you trust, taking a walk, writing in a journal, or creating art.
If I get mastitis, what should I do?
Mastitis is best-treated sooner rather than later. If you notice a clogged duct not clearing with feedings, self-massage or heat, it’s best to seek professional help right away as mastitis can escalate quickly. Your family doctor or gynecologist can prescribe antibiotics, while an acupuncturist can perform a treatment aimed at getting the stuck energy (qi) moving and will likely send you home with Chinese herbs to clear the infection naturally over the course of a few days. To keep mastitis from recurring, stick to a regular feeding schedule, take the time needed to clear clogged ducts as soon as you notice them, and find a healthy way to release any unresolved feelings of resentment or frustration.
To schedule a consultation for all of your postpartum challenges, contact us at 512-686-0777 today!
This Mother’s Day, I’m thinking about my own journey to motherhood. Do you have friends who can basically get a wink from their lover and then – Bam! – they’re pregnant? Yah, that was so not me.
In my twenties, I used every type of birth control I could find because becoming a mother felt at least five (or maybe even ten) chapters ahead in my life. It wasn’t until the age of 30 that a young doctor asked me if I wanted to consider freezing my eggs. I was actually shocked by the question because in my most basic understanding of biology, I had calculated at least 10 more good fertile years ahead of me. I was sure that when I met the right guy, got married, and hit my career goals, I could drop the birth control and get pregnant right away. Wow, was I wrong.
Five years later, I had found and married the love of my life and was ready to start trying. Within three months, I found out I was pregnant and thought to myself, “See, that wasn’t so hard!” I loved being pregnant and knowing I was growing a tiny human. A few weeks later, I woke up in excruciating pain and had a miscarriage. I was devastated. I was a mom with nothing to show for it. The following Mother’s Day was heartbreaking.
After a few months, we started trying again, this time with a renewed fervor. I charted my basal body temperature at the exact same time every morning and produced impressive graphs that showed I was ovulating every cycle. But, my cycles were short and after meeting with a reproductive endocrinologist, I learned my cycles lacked enough progesterone to sustain a pregnancy. Upon hearing that news, I brought home the infamous Clomid, the gateway drug to assisted fertility. Then I read every book I could find about getting pregnant, received acupuncture treatments and Chinese herbs almost daily, and created a vision board of what motherhood meant to me. It was intense and exhausting trying to sustain hope and keep up with the daily rigors of all of it.
Fast forward through nearly two years of assisted fertility treatments and shattered dreams. Our grand finale was investing in the grandmother of all fertility treatments, IVF with ICSI. After harvesting only a handful of viable eggs, the fertility clinic prepared us for the worst. Of the eggs collected, only two matured into embryos. We transferred them both and kept our fingers and toes crossed during the two-week wait for a pregnancy test. The stakes were high… it was our last chance to become biological parents and my last chance in this lifetime to get pregnant. Since our immediate family and friends had never been down the same path, I found support and solace in an online tribe of women experiencing the same journey. We were all in it together, exchanging baby dust (wishes for a successful pregnancy) like it was a real currency.
It’s now been four years and I am a mother to a beautiful girl who defied the odds and stuck with me to arrive earthside exactly 39 weeks after conception. She is a perfect mix of my husband and I, with his sense of adventure and my love of learning. When I look back at all we went through, I can’t imagine my life without her in it. I do wonder what it would have been like if I had conceived her naturally, without the years of prayers and tears. But, with her arrival, she gave me the ultimate gift. She made me a mom.
Where pink clouds meet blue water...
4 times a year, I disappear for 4 days to visit this lake to experience a symphony of silence, solitude, introspection & inspiration.
While it's technically a self-led spiritual retreat, I affectionately call it "Mom Camp" because that phrase makes sense to my four-year-old. The truth is coming here makes me a better mother, wife, friend, doctor & human.
Every trip here is a different experience. The only constant is I'm always transformed by the time I get home.
I highly recommend finding your own version of Mom Camp. Because once you find it, you will never be the same.
Spring has arrived in the Texas Hill Country! Fields of blue bonnets line our country roads and the warm breezes are back! It's hard to look anywhere and not witness a season full of transformation and growth. It's a great time for you to renew yourself with acupuncture!
In the spirit of Spring, Indigo Healing Acupuncture is launching new business hours in May. We will be open 6 days a week to help our patients live their best lives, free of pain and stress.
Effective Monday, May 6th, appointments are available:
To become a new patient, give us a call at 512-686-0777 or schedule online by clicking the button below.
If you’re a parent and you suffer from migraines or chronic headaches, you already know the special challenges of parenting through severe pain. Busy lives full of school events, sports practices, and errands mean that the days of disappearing into a dark room to sleep off a headache are practically non-existent when tiny beings depend on you for everything.
So, what can you do?
Here are 3 secrets to being an awesome parent, even if you suffer from migraines or chronic headaches:
1. Invest in Yourself
No matter how busy your schedule is, write in 15 minutes of “me time” every day, without exception.
Why? Because you need a minimum of 15 minutes a day alone to be your best self.
My 15 minutes starts the second I wake up in the morning. Whether my daughter is awake or not, I head straight to my journal and write 1 page of affirmations to start my day. Then I spend 10-15 minutes reading book(s) that nourish my soul. This “me time” is non-negotiable. Can’t get your littles to give you 15 minutes? If you’re married, ask your spouse to backfill your parenting position. If your kids are easy persuaded with bribes, give them something to keep them happy for 15 minutes. Build your “me time” into a daily routine. It’s not always easy, but kids and spouses are trainable especially when something happens every day at the same time of day!
2. Reverse-Engineer Your Life
Identify what obstacles are blocking you from living a headache-free life. Is it too many looming deadlines at work? Is it unresolved tension in your marriage? Is it sitting in 2 hours of traffic everyday and feeling stuck? Obstacles are everywhere and they come in all different sizes and shapes. Write down 5 obstacles that contribute to your headaches. Then, reverse-engineer a solution to all 5 or as many as you can. Some may be easier to abolish than others. But you won’t know how hard or how easy it can be to overcome obstacles in your life until you figure out what they are.
3. Claim Your Strengths
What are you “good” at? Are you good at helping others? Cooking? Showing up on time? Going to church every Sunday? Dancing? Take a quick inventory to write down 5 things you do well. Then, think about why you do those things well. Are you good at showing up on time because you plan ahead? Are you good at dancing because you dance like no one else is watching? Embrace your strengths and celebrate them. If you do get a migraine or a horrendous headache, celebrate tiny victories like having enough energy to get out of bed and give your kids a hug after baseball practice. On headache days, the small victories count the most.
Are you interested in learning more about natural approaches to long-term relief from migraines and chronic headaches? Indigo Healing Acupuncture has teamed up with Julie Balderrama Coaching to offer a unique holistic program for anyone suffering from headaches. We help people (who have tried everything) break free from headaches by discovering hidden obstacles to healing. We empower them with knowledge and tools to find long-lasting relief so they can thrive with freedom and joy in their life.
I had surgery two weeks ago… less than 10 people knew about it. It took me out of my holistic clinic and into the depths of modern medicine for a few days of intensive rest and recovery. To be honest, as a doctor of Chinese medicine, I say the phrase “Surgery should be a last resort” to patients every day. But, when I heard the words “It could be cancer” I knew I had to go to the last resort.
Committing to surgery stirred up feelings of frustration (why didn’t acupuncture help?), fear (what if the surgery doesn’t go as planned?) and a sense of abandoning patient-centered holistic medicine for the profit-focused modern medicine machine. Having surgery felt a lot like a betrayal to everything I believe in.
This is what I learned…
• Modern medicine can be life-saving
• Modern medicine doesn’t have all the answers
• Modern medicine has a very limited toolbox (drugs or surgery) to solve health problems
Back in September, my gynecologist felt a mass near my uterus during my annual exam. I had been having severe pain with every menstrual cycle and knew my endometriosis had returned. An ultrasound revealed a complex cyst about the size of an egg and attached to my ovary. We agreed the best course of action was to watch it for a few weeks, clean up my diet (goodbye coffee, hello celery juice!), and check it again in December. The exam in December showed the cyst remained and had a new feature on it, a nodular tumor. My gynecologist told me it could be cancer and offered a CA-125 blood test. However, there was no definitive way to know without surgery. So, we scheduled the surgery, a laparoscopic cystectomy. The whole discussion took less than 10 minutes.
I returned home from that appointment scared and uncertain. Of course, my ultimate fear was losing a battle against cancer and leaving my 4-year-old without a mother. It was ridiculously easy for my mind to jump to that awful conclusion. I consciously refused to buy into that outcome that my mind wanted to play on repeat. After a few hours of acknowledging the fear and reprogramming my mind with positive outcomes, I felt more at peace.
In the days leading up to the surgery, I reprioritized my day to begin with a writing meditation full of “I am” statements such as “I am healthy and pain-free” and trust statements like “The universe conspires to help me.” I also spent 5-10 minutes every morning connecting to a higher power and asking for divine guidance. I revised my will. I treasured tucking my daughter into bed every night.
By the day of my surgery, I felt confident that the surgery would be a success. That morning I reminded my gynecologist to preserve my ovary if she could and to clean up any other endometrial tissue she discovered. She agreed and within minutes the anesthesiologist was there ready to knock me out. When I woke up in recovery about 90 minutes later, I was in a lot of pain and the nurse sent fentanyl through my IV. As someone who relies on herbal medicine, having fentanyl surge through my veins was quite a sensation. My pain level decreased from 8 to 1 within minutes, but I still had no idea if the surgery was a success. Once I saw my husband, my first question was, “Do I still have all my organs?” He said yes and a few hours later, I was released in a fentanyl haze of relief and gratitude.
Fast forward two weeks to today, when I had my post-operative appointment. I found out the cause of the pain was endometriosis, but not at all what I expected. The surgery revealed I had a benign ovarian endometrioma (often called a chocolate cyst) full of endometrial fluid. Compared to 5 years before when I had stage IV endometriosis scattered across my bowels, peritoneum, fallopian tubes and uterus, my body had effectively encapsulated the endometriosis into a single cyst. Miraculously, there were no signs of endometriosis on any other organs or structures. I thought to myself, “Wow, the acupuncture and herbs did help!”
Modern medicine can be life-saving and anyone facing the possibility of a life-threatening illness should consult a trusted MD for a modern diagnosis and treatment plan. However, for many chronic illnesses and conditions, modern medicine offers a very limited toolbox consisting of drugs or surgery. Now that I’ve had a surgical tune-up, I’ll continue with acupuncture treatments two times a week and a daily regimen of Chinese herbs to control the endometriosis. I know the risk of recurrence is high, but now that I’ve witnessed how intelligent my body was to isolate the disease, I have faith that I won’t be on an operating table again anytime soon.
I want to tell you a secret. It’s a well-guarded secret. An important secret. And it can change your life.
Before I reveal the secret, let me ask…
Do you suffer from daily headaches? Migraines? Other pain that just won’t go away?
Have you ever thought about what pain is?
Is there a message in that pain?
The answer is YES, there is a strong message hidden in that headache or migraine or stiff neck or backache or whatever is causing YOU pain.
Pain is a messenger. Pain is the only way your physical body can communicate directly with your mind. Pain is your body’s way to yell “STOP! PAY ATTENTION! LISTEN TO ME!”
The big secret is... Pain exists so your body can heal itself. Your body is engineered to heal itself. You can see it in action everytime you get a papercut!
So, are you receptive to your body’s calls for attention? Or is your pain buried under medications designed to keep it quiet and hidden?
If you’re ready to hear your body’s message and banish your daily headaches, migraines or other chronic pain, contact us to schedule a consultation at 512-686-0777 or book online by clicking the blue button below.
Do you suffer from Migraine or Chronic Headaches?
We have a solution for you!
We’ve teamed up with Qi Gong Extraordinaire and Mind-Body Coach Julie Balderrama to provide a comprehensive program for relieving the root cause of Migraines and Chronic Headaches. This program will not only banish headaches, but improve your life with easy tools and strategies for migraine and headache prevention.
Join us at Skull and Cakebones on Saturday February 9, 2019 at 11am to learn how you can reclaim a headache-free life you love. RSVP required, click the button below or call 512-686-0777.
Happy New Year! You can find advice on starting 2019 "right" everywhere these days, but here's what I've been sharing with my patients because these simple tools really work for me as an entrepreneur and as a mom.
Tool #1: Create a Vision Board
Definitely one of my favorite family projects. The day after Christmas, we cleared our Christmas table, collected every magazine & catalog we could find in our house, pulled out glue sticks & scissors, and got to work clipping images for our 2019 vision boards.
Everyone got into it, even my toddler (although her board was very ice cream-centric, haha)! Here's how to get started...
Tool #2: Start Using a Daily Journal/Planner
There are so many different kinds of planners, so look around until you find one right for you. Many will prompt you to set goals/intentions for the day/week/month/quarter/year. My favorites (with non-sponsored hyperlinks):
Tool #3: Record Your Gratitude
The adage "Like attracts like" applies to gratitude and blessings. As Jack Canfield wrote, "When you're grateful for what you already have, you will naturally attract more for which you can be grateful." There is something magical about writing down your blessings every day. It takes your thanks from a thought to a physical action (writing it on paper). Do it everyday for a month and I promise you'll see significant blessings appear in your life. The best part about this daily practice is that no special equipment is needed... all you need is any piece of paper (back of a junk mail envelope is ok!) and a pen or pencil.
Tool #4: Listen to Inspiring Podcasts
Podcasts are a great (free!) way to shift your mindset any time of the day. Much like a reading a book or listening to music, podcasts allow you to escape and enter a different space. These are my current favorites for motivation:
Looking for unique gifts for your friends & family? Indigo Healing Acupuncture has you covered with exclusive gifts you won't find anywhere else! Limited quantities available, so don't wait too long!
Hostess Gifts for Holiday Parties
Why bring your party host/hostess another bottle of wine when you can bring something truly special?
Need some amazing stocking stuffers? Check these out:
Gifts to Experience
There's more amazing gifts in our retail shop too, including re-loadable gift cards! Reserve your favorite gifts today by calling 512-686-0777!
One of the questions I often hear is, “Does acupuncture have side-effects?”
The honest answer is “Yes!”
Here are three surprising side-effects of acupuncture…
Are you ready to try acupuncture for your biggest health challenge and experience these beneficial side-effects?
Schedule a consultation today!
As a parent, you've probably felt pangs of anxiety from time to time. It's natural to feel anxious occasionally about your child. For example, when you're about to board a 6 hour flight with a lap child or when it's your child's first day of school. However, when anxiety becomes a daily occurrence you need to take action for yourself and your family.
When anxiety spirals out the normal and into the excessive, even the best parents can feel like they're not enough... not doing enough, not present in enough, not prepared enough, not patient enough, not loving enough... the list goes on and on. If left untreated, anxiety felt by parents can spillover and foster anxiety in their child(ren). A study in the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology (2013) found "parent anxiety confers poorer treatment outcomes for childhood anxiety disorders." Psychologists created a term for this condition: parental anxiety.
Parental anxiety is a serious condition because it not only affects you, it affects your entire family.
What are the symptoms of parental anxiety? It can manifest as...
Do you feel more than two of these symptoms on a daily basis? Has it impacted your ability to parent? If you answered yes, now is the time to take action before it spirals out of control.
If you are experiencing parental anxiety, there is a solution waiting for you! A series of acupuncture treatments and customized Chinese herbs can effectively alleviate anxiety and bring you back to your best self within weeks. Schedule a consultation today to get relief from your anxiety!
This is one of my family's favorite soups. It's easy to make and every bite is packed with protein, vitamins and minerals that are soothing to the digestive system. It's the perfect soup to eat when recovering from an illness or surgery.
I serve it blended and creamy, not chunky. It's a meal in itself or a filling side dish.
Butternut Squash Soup
1 large organic butternut squash (Costco has pre-packaged cubes)
1 sweet onion
2 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
Handful of baby carrots, sliced or ribboned
1 box of organic chicken bone broth
1 can of organic full-fat coconut milk
1/8th teaspoon ground nutmeg
Sea salt and pepper
Organic extra virgin olive oil
Have all of your ingredients? Let's do this!
That's it! You've made a delicious, healthy soup that nourishes the Lungs, Kidneys, and Stomach! It keeps in the refrigerator for about 3 days in an airtight container.
Another tip: To make an easy one-pot dinner, add chunks of rotisserie chicken to the finished soup.
If you’ve ever been pregnant, you know there is a long list of things to avoid: paint fumes, ibuprofen, dirty kitty litter, sushi, tobacco, aspirin, caffeine, hot tubs, raw cookie dough, scuba diving….the list goes on and on. So what can you do to cope with the stress, aches, and pains of growing another human? The answer is...
The great news is that acupuncture is effective at treating ailments in every trimester of pregnancy. The most common pregnancy-related conditions seen in the clinic include:
When performed by a Licensed Acupuncturist (not a Physical Therapist or Chiropractor), acupuncture is a safe option for mamas-to-be to consider when looking for gentle, natural help with pain or illness.
To find an acupuncturist skilled in pregnancy support, there are 3 important questions to ask:
To schedule a consultation at Indigo Healing Acupuncture and learn more about how acupuncture can benefit your pregnancy, click the button below.
Conventional medicine is great at some things, like emergency surgery. However, it often fails at treating more common problems, like frequent headaches or poor sleep.
Here are five common conditions that are poorly treated/managed by conventional medicine:
Acupuncture excels at treating these five conditions because it gets to the root of the problem. Conventional medicine only offers interventions (pharmaceutical or surgical) to relieve the symptoms of these condition, while acupuncture delivers long-term relief.
Often the quick-fix of drugs or surgery creates more health problems as the root cause of the condition is left untreated and/or undiagnosed. If you hear your doctor say the word "idiopathic" it means he/she does not know the cause of your condition. Not very comforting, right?
At your first acupuncture treatment, we’ll diagnose the root cause of your condition and get you on the road for long-term healing and relief. Acupuncture treatments not only prevent conditions from returning, it can prevent related conditions from arising.
Starting in October, Indigo is hosting a new Book Club near Dripping Springs!
Check out all the details HERE and RSVP to save a seat!
Every once in a while, one of my patients will receive what I call a Unicorn Treatment.
What is a Unicorn Treatment?
A Unicorn Treatment is a magical, mysterious acupuncture session that...
Maybe you've had a friend who's personally experienced a Unicorn Treatment. For example, a friend trying to get pregnant without any luck for 19 months has acupuncture once and conceives right away.
Results like this lead to a common misconception that the Unicorn Treatment is a regular occurrence in the world of acupuncture. Upon hearing these stories, many people try acupuncture once, expecting a miraculous cure, only to feel disappointed when the condition returns a few days later.
This is totally normal.
The reality is most conditions, especially chronic ailments, take multiple acupuncture treatments to resolve. Patients usually feel better after the first treatment, but if they don't receive another treatment within a few days, the pain or illness returns as if the acupuncture treatment never happened.
In my clinic, all treatment plans are customized to a patient's needs. In most cases, I advise the patient that their condition will take X number of treatments within X number of days before they feel consistently better.
So, if you've tried acupuncture once, and you felt disappointed because it didn't help you, I highly recommend trying it again (especially before resorting to an irreversible treatment like surgery). It's likely that consistent treatments will give you relief of your symptoms. And if you haven't tried acupuncture, maybe your first session will be a Unicorn Treatment, which will feel just as good as winning the lottery!
About 12 years ago, I suffered from debilitating chronic migraines. They would start with an aura, usually consisting of a blind spot that would prevent me from reading anything, including my watch. The aura would last about 25 minutes, then the vomiting would start, followed by intense pressure building in my skull. The worst sensation of each migraine was the stabbing pain behind my eye that could last for 12+ hours. All I could do was lie in a dark, cool room waiting for the pain to subside. There was no sleep, just unrelenting pain and silent prayers for relief.
The migraines consumed my life, 2-3 days of every week. I lost work days, I lost friends, my marriage decayed, and I fell out of touch. People got tired of hearing me say “Sorry, I have a headache.” It was both depressing and terrifying.
I tried over-the-counter meds like aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen. I tried drinking coffee and dark chocolate during the aura. I had a CAT scan and a MRI, which revealed nothing. Neurologists prescribed an assortment of pharmaceuticals, but they either didn’t work or had terrible side effects (topiramate = hair fell out/slurred speech/memory loss). Plus, they were only mildly effective, reducing the rate of my migraines to about 2 a month. My neurologist warned me that I would need to take a beta blocker (propranolol) for the rest of my life to prevent the migraines from coming back.
I was only 28. The rest of my life sounded like a very long time.
As a last ditch effort, I gave acupuncture a try. There was an acupuncturist across the street from my office and she performed nothing short of a miracle.
The frequency and severity of my migraines diminished over the course of a few weekly treatments. After a few months, I was able to stop the topiramate. After two years, I weaned off the beta blocker. It was a long journey to relief, but manageable with acupuncture and Chinese herbs.
At this point, I can look back and see how migraines caused me to stop and rebuild my life. The migraines called me to become a holistic doctor and help others find relief. They turned out to be an amazing blessing in an awful package.
What are your migraines telling you?
Congratulations! You’ve just had an amazing acupuncture treatment that has left you feeling completely relaxed and high on life.
You’re probably thinking, “Wow! I wish I always felt like this! How can I get this feeling to last?”
The truth is, despite how good it feels, only about 20% of acupuncture’s healing power happens while the needles are in. About 80% of the healing effect occurs in the 24 hours following the treatment.
To sustain the healing effect, you must avoid three things 24 hours after the needles come out:
Cold is the #1 arch enemy in Chinese Medicine:
All of these cold things can all counteract the benefits of acupuncture by contracting the flow of qi and slowing down the healing process.
2. Alcohol and recreational drugs
After an acupuncture treatment, your body works hard to transfer the energetics of the needles into acute healing and homeostasis (balance). Alcohol is warming to the body, yet can significantly alter the 24 hour cycle of qi. Alcohol and recreational drugs disrupt the healing process (and in the case of getting drunk, can completely cancel out any treatment benefits).
Consuming alcohol or getting high after a treatment is effectively wasting your time and money.
Sex is considered an activity that promotes the free flow of qi. However, after an acupuncture treatment, sex can demand too much qi and inhibit healing. It is best to wait until the day after acupuncture to get your qi moving between the sheets.
So, now that you know what to avoid, what should you do during the 24 hours after an acupuncture treatment?
The best thing you can do is rest your body and relax your mind:
Allow the natural high to sink in for 24 hours while your body-mind-spirit take the time needed for healing.
Dr. Michelle Wendt, L.Ac., DACM
Dr. Michelle Wendt, L.Ac., DACM practices Oriental & Chinese Medicine in Hawaii and Texas.