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Our office offers two different approaches to acupuncture: Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM acupuncture, and Medical acupuncture. TCM acupuncture is offered by our TCM/Shiatsu therapist, Gilbert Schaeffer. Medical acupuncture is offered as an adjunct to chiropractic and naturopathic treatments. Please see the descriptions below to aid in deciding which approach is best for you.

TCM acupuncture: The Eastern Way

In Eastern medicine, the practitioner is not interested in naming a disease, but in distinguishing a ‘pattern of disharmony’. The body and mind are viewed as a whole functioning unit, not as a collection of anatomical parts. If one part becomes underactive or overactive, it affects the functioning of the whole body. Symptoms, such as pain, tiredness, or anxiety, are seen as evidence of the imbalance in the whole body.

TCM Acupuncture treats the whole body with special attention given to your problem area. Gilbert is trained to look at your life patterns (symptoms, eating habits, facial colour, etc.) in order to draw a picture of the imbalances. The aim of the treatment is to re-balance the body to promote harmonious functioning once again.

TCM Acupuncture treatments address the total body condition, not just the symptoms. Time is needed to improve body functioning from the centre and to allow the body to change, to get out of old habits and into better ones.

Answers to some common questions:

• Neck and shoulders
• Sciatica
• Digestive disorders
• Sinus problems
• Upper and lower back
• Whiplash
• Chronic fatigue
• Sports injuries
• Stress
• Reproductive disorders
• Quitting smoking
• Tennis elbow
• Headache
• Asthma
• Weight loss
• Tendonitis
• Migraine
• Allergies
• Anxiety
• And many more…
Everybody has a different and unique response to acupuncture. Typically the treatment is pain-free; however some have a heightened sympathetic response to needles which results in the sensation of lightheadedness, fatigue and . The application of the needle is similar to the prick of a mosquito bite with further tightness being related to the tightness of the tissue the needle is in. The end result of pain resolution is always worth the slight discomfort one might experience during the course of treatment.
The number of treatments needed depends on each individual’s condition. As your condition improves, the frequency of treatments can be decreased. A good maintenance program is to have treatments once a month. Your therapist will advise you of the best schedule to follow.
Acupuncture therapists often use other methods to complement needle treatment. Gilbert Schaefer may recommend Shiatsu therapy for better results.

Medical Acupuncture:

As in traditional acupuncture, Medical Acupuncture involves insertion of solid needles at relevant points on the body in combination with manual needle stimulation or electrical stimulation. Medical Acupuncture does not involve tongue or pulse diagnosis, nor does it try to look at whole body function as does TCM acupuncture. Rather, the diagnosis/body part is assessed through a physical examination. Based on this process, anatomical points that are relevant to the condition are selected for needling. In general, Medical Acupuncture is always integrated with other therapeutic interventions and used as a modality for other treatments. This is dependent on the nature of your problem and on the physiological mechanisms available to your individual case.