When working with children, I usually refer to acupuncture needles as “taps,” to avoid the association with the much larger needles they may have come into contact with at the doctor’s office. Some children are ready to accept “taps” right away, and others need time to warm up to the idea. At The Acupuncture Den, children are never forced or tricked into treatments they aren’t ready for. I have a number of very effective non-needle techniques to treat kids who aren’t ready for “taps.” Acupuncture has been practiced for thousands of years, including on kids. Qi, or life energy, travels throughout the body along pathways which have been mapped over time. These pathways are also called channels or meridians. When the body is out of balance, the Qi does not course these channels smoothly. Acupuncture, the insertion of extremely thin needles into points along the channels, is a method of tapping into and regulating the Qi, thereby helping the body and mind to rebalance.
Shoni Shin is a Japanese pediatric massage technique which uses a smooth edged tool to gently scrape along the skin. This technique is gentle and non-invasive. Shoni Shin can be combined with acupuncture or serve as an alternative for children who are not yet ready to accept acupuncture “taps.”
PEDIATRIC TUI NA
Pediatric Tui Na is a safe form of therapeutic massage which is highly effective for treating young children. Parents can be taught the basic techniques and continue these treatments at home. Pediatric Tui Na can be combined with acupuncture or serve as an alternative for children who are not yet ready to accept acupuncture “taps.”
Cupping is a non-invasive technique that uses small glass, plastic or silicone cups as suction devices that are placed onto the skin. It promotes blood circulation in the muscles, and may be left in place for as short as a few moments and up to 5 minutes. They may also be moved around on the skin to provide a type of massage. Cupping is often used to treat the onset of a cold, respiratory issues, constipation, pain, and scar tissue and adhesions. Many kids request “polka dots,” referring to the light and temporary marks that are sometimes visible on the skin after cupping. Cupping can be combined with acupuncture or serve as an alternative for children who are not yet ready to accept acupuncture “taps.”
Moxibustion is the burning of moxa (dried mugwort) near an acupuncture point or meridian. It is warming, soothing and is used to treat many health concerns, such as strengthening the immune system, regulating digestion, decreasing pain and alleviating the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Herbal Medicine is an integral part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and has been used for thousands of years. When taken under the supervision of a licensed practitioner, herbal medicine is safe and effective. Each herb has its own energetic properties, and herbs are usually combined into formulas which help to balance the body and the mind. Herbal formulas are prescribed based on an individual’s diagnosis and constitution, treating both the symptoms and the underlying cause. The formulas are tailored to the individual needs of each patient and come in many forms, including herbal teas, powders, pills and tinctures. The Acupuncture Den uses only the highest quality herbs, and has full confidence in the quality standards of the herb suppliers. Reputable pediatric lines are carried to make herbal medicine more accessible to children.