Zócalo Wellness

Ancient Healing, Modern Times

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The Necessity of Time with Chronic Conditions: Healing PCOS and Low Back Pain

A long-term patient of mine has been using traditional Chinese medicine to address two chronic conditions with incredible results: polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and low back pain. The results have been remarkable. This is her story.  Continue reading

Getting Care After a Car Accident

With all the snow and ice we’ve been getting this unusually cold winter in Portland, I thought I’d write about what resources you have in the case of a car accident. Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine is very effective in healing both acute and chronic injuries, but motor vehicle accidents (MVAs) require some additional steps in order to access coverage for care, steps that most people don’t know about in advance. 

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Star Wars and Traditional Chinese Medicine: A Force By Any Other Name

The Star Wars franchise re-awakened this winter and with it my love for that epic story. After watching Episode VII twice, scouring the internet for the back story and plot hole explanations, and re-watching the original trilogy, I started wondering, “What is it about the Force and the Jedi that has such a powerful hold on my imagination?” I’m an acupuncturist, that’s what. Continue reading

Jim’s Story: Chronic Pain and Anxiety Relief

Jim came to me over a month ago for low back, knee, ankle and shingles pain, along with lifelong anxiety. Yesterday was his fifth treatment. When he sat down on my couch at the beginning of our session he looked at me apologetically and confessed, “I was trying to think of what I wanted to work on today but everything is doing so well I don’t know what to say!” In addition to relief from pain he had suffered with for years, just taking the time to come in for an hour in the middle of his busy week (he is the father of five and works a physically-demanding job at New Seasons) is making all the difference in his health. Focused work on his back, knees and ankles improved the pain almost immediately, and his anxiety is down, which keeps the shingles pain at bay and helps everything else.  Jim is a poster child for the healing power of acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine. As many times as I have seen it happen I am still constantly amazed.

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Trying Acupuncture For the First Time, Nickel-Free

Often folks who haven’t tried acupuncture before want to know what it will be like. When Christy inquired about treatment for eczema it came with a twist. She has a nickel allergy and wondered if there were nickel-free needle options. I had never treated someone with a nickel allergy before but after some searching found out that most acupuncture needles are stainless steel, which means they likely have nickel in them. Luckily, Tai Chi brand acupuncture needles have a gold-plated, nickel-free variety, so we decided to try them out and blog about it. Below is Christy’s account of the experience as shared on her blog Many thanks to Christy for sharing her personal story. You can check out her post here, and learn more about her below. Continue reading

pollen, allergies, allergic rhinitis

Achoo! – Tips to Weather a Longer Allergy Season

Pollen is in integral part of the web of life, but it is also what wreaks havoc on the immune systems of millions of people every year. With short, warm and dry winters, and early springs and summers allergy season has become longer and more intense in recent years. I’ve seen a growing number of people in the clinic suffering from itchy eyes and runny noses. People who have had allergies in the past have worsening symptoms, and people who did not suffer before suddenly find themselves sneezing. Continue reading

Social justice; community

Tupac’s Dad Was an Acupuncturist, and Other Tales on the Revolutionary Power of Acupuncture

On Monday a client asked me to come to her house to do group acupuncture for her and a group of friends. I treated six people in the comfort of her living room, and sat for an hour listening to their gentle slumbering as they drifted off to Acu-land. When it was over and I was un-pinning the last person I heard one of the participants talking about how amazing the experience had been for them, especially since most of the group was comprised of queer folks of color. I smiled quietly, thinking to myself, “This is exactly why I went to acupuncture school.” Continue reading