GW Center for Integrative Medicine is proud to offer acupuncture in the Washington D.C. area. Acupuncture is a part of traditional Chinese medicine. Chinese medicine is the oldest continually practiced and documented medical system in the world. It views health holistically and sees an illness as an imbalance caused by internal and external factors influencing the mind and body. The Chinese medicine practitioner reviews a patient’s health history, lifestyle, pulse, tongue, and other body vital signs to identify patterns of imbalances.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a family of safe procedures that can be used by adults and children alike. 10-20 stainless steel sterile needles are inserted into acupuncture points and left in the body for up to 25 min to stimulate specific acupuncture points. Other techniques can be offered during an acupuncture session when indicated. These may include moxibustion (heat therapy), cupping, guasha, micro bloodletting, electric stimulation (to provide needle vibration), topical creams, liniments, plasters, massage, and acupressure.
The goal of acupuncture treatment is to reverse and prevent these imbalances. Main Chinese Medical therapies include food therapy, acupuncture, herbal medicine, massage, movement therapies, breathing practices, visualization, and meditation.
Acupuncture in Washington D.C.
There are different schools of acupuncture such as TCM, 5 Elements, Classical Chinese Medicine, Japanese, Korean, and ear and scalp acupuncture, to name a few. All are rooted in 2,000+ years old Chinese Medical principles and informed by modern biomedicine.
Acupuncturists at GWCIM are knowledgeable in most acupuncture styles and are proficient in most acupuncture techniques. All our practitioners have more than 10 years of experience.
Conditions treatable by acupuncture
Acupuncture is used to treat many health issues. There is limited but solid evidence that acupuncture is effective in many health conditions. Among the most common conditions are acute and chronic pain, injuries, headaches, arthritis, GI functional disorders, GYN/OB care, infertility, stress-related illness, anxiety and depression, pediatric and geriatric care, chemotherapy-induced nausea, facial paralysis and other types of paralysis, dental pain, and substance dependence. Acupuncture is gaining attention as an alternative therapy for pain in the wake of the opioid crisis.
Are there side effects from acupuncture treatment?
Acupuncture has very few side effects (minor bruising is rare but possible) and can be combined with any other healthcare therapy.
How many acupuncture treatments do I need?
The number of treatments needed depends on the individual. A person with a chronic condition may need one to two treatments a week over several months. An acute problem normally improves after 4 to 8 sessions.
Chinese Medicine Herbs
Herbal medicine is another important CM therapy. The Chinese Materia Medica (a pharmacological reference book used by TCM practitioners) describes thousands of medicinal substances—primarily plants, but also some minerals and animal products. Different parts of plants, such as the leaves, roots, stems, flowers, and seeds, are used. In TCM, herbs are often combined in formulas and given as teas, capsules, liquid extracts, granules, or powders.
Meet our acupuncturists and herbalists:
- Tiffany C. Hoyt, MSOM, LAc., Doctor of Acupuncture
- Angela Gabriel, MSOM, LAc, CH, S.E.P.
- Deirdre Orceyre, ND, MSOM, LAc
- Ashley Drapeau, PA-C, L.Ac., MPAS, MAC
- Kaptchuk TJ. The Web That Has No Weaver: Understanding Chinese Medicine, 2000.
- Beinfield, H, Korngold, E. Between heaven and Earth: a Guide to Chinese Medicine, 1992
- Maoshing, Ni. The Tao of Nutrition, 2009