Thursday, November 17, 2011

TCM Intervention

I was feeling really frustrated this past week, as I was beginning to think that I may be having a relapse?  Haven't had one since the CCSVI procedure, don't really want to believe that's what it is...but the evidence seemed to be pointing in that direction...right time of year, sudden worsening of numbness in feet/legs, very cold extremeties, and increased spasticity in my legs which has made it very scary to drive at the moment and has me wall walking/wall bouncing a lot of the time!  Aargh!! :(


I went to my scheduled Acupuncture appointment yesterday, hoping that I would find some relief/help.  Now, I've been seeing Vanessa regularly for about five months now, mostly for Acupuncture, but we've been introducing Chinese herbal remedies into my 'healing regime' the past couple of months.  Yesterday, when I told her I suspected that I might be having a relapse and gave her my reasons why I thought that, she immediately went into what I now refer to as 'triage' mode. LOL

According to Vanessa's explanation as to what was going on with me, I was NOT having a relapse (yeah!!) but a reaction to the change in weather.  (We've been having colder weather this past week...hmmm....coincidence??....not according to Vanessa!)  Because I already have problems with blood flow (in my legs), when it gets colder, the body needs to work a little harder to maintain blood flow, especially in the core (trunk area), and everything constricts which results in even poorer blood flow to the extremeties...hence increased coldness, numbness, and spasticity in my legs.

She immediately went to work with the acupuncture needles and then had Antonella, another practitioner, do moxibustion therapy on my feet.  It was weird having both of them working on me...I jokingly commented that I felt like I was in emergency, to which they replied, "this IS an emergency, we need to get your blood flowing!"



Moxibustion or 'moxa' for short, is an interesting therapy.  Moxibustion is applied indirectly (a few cm from the skin) using sticks with compressed moxa. (Chinese herb).   In traditional Chinese medicine, moxibustion is used on people who have a cold or stagnant condition.  (Cold feet and poorly circulating blood?...  I'd say I qualify.)  The burning of moxa is believed to expel cold and warm the
meridians, which leads to smoother flow of blood and qi.  






After my treatment, I was sent home with my own moxa stick and an herbal 'tonic' (which I have to mix with water,  drink 3x/ day, and tastes absolutely disgusting!).  I have to use the moxa stick on my feet 3x/day as well.


I like the moxa stick, the warmth of the stick on the bottom of my foot is soothing, although I have to be careful not to keep it in one place for too long or too close, as it starts to get VERY hot!


Is it working?...well it's only been a day, but my feet have not been as icy cold as they were and I think, just maybe, that I'm moving around just a wee bit better.  Only time and a little moxa will tell!

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