Park Slope Acupuncture – What Is My Acupuncturist Thinking? Part One

Bridging the Gap Between Acupuncturist and Patient – Part One

Why is my acupuncturist asking about my period when I came in for a frozen shoulder?


I practice acupuncture in Park Slope, Brooklyn which is on the outskirts of New York City. I have a busy practice because I work in one of the busiest places on the planet and also because I work with a chiropractor. A good majority of my clients have never tried acupuncture before coming to me. What I have realized over the years is that a lot of people have absolutely no clue how acupuncture works, how I choose the points, what I am feeling in the pulse and why I am talking about things like Liver and Spleen all the time. I decided to try and shed light on some of the ways my mind is working when I get someone on the treatment table. It is an interesting process and I feel there is no reason why my clients can’t understand exactly how my mind is working when I go about my acupuncture treatments.


Most people who visit an acupuncturist have what we would call a chief complaint. They have one particular reason why they are seeking treatment. Unlike Western medical practitioners, an acupuncturist is considering the whole picture of the person, not just the symptom in question. Thus begins the mystery.


The topic of this article will be the importance of the history of the body and the emotions. This is where my mind begins when meeting a client for the first time. Everyone’s body has a story to tell. The way the energy flows or does not flow in the body has much to do with the physical and emotional traumas the body has endured over the years.


Some examples of physical traumas are car accidents, broken bones, sprains, surgeries, scars, diseases. I also am interested in what diseases manifested during childhood, family history of disease, athleticism in childhood and teen years. Since I have additional training in Myofascial Release Therapy, which is a physical therapy that involves treatment of the fascia, I want to know about every instance where the fascia was torn or cut. This will have an impact on the way the meridians of energy are flowing or not flowing.


Examples of emotional traumas would include death of a parent or spouse, divorce, history of addiction in self or family, abuse, violence, muggings. All of these disrupt the natural flow of life and the natural flow of energy in the body. They will all contribute to the manifestation of illness or imbalance which leads to symptoms and are what I keep in mind when choosing points and methods to use for treatment. Many times emotional traumas haven’t been fully experienced and released and are therefore still taking up energy that the body may need for other functions.

These are all examples of how individual life paths contribute to the story our illness is trying to tell. In order for me to understand how the body ended up imbalanced, I must understand the story the body tells. There is tremendous power that is unleashed when we begin to listen to a patients story.




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