The Wellness Blog
Here are three resources to help you prepare for birth. I am working with an extraordinary group of women in the Maternity Acupuncture and Mentorship Peer Support two year program. I am both a student and a presenter in the program. Please use these links as advised to best support you to prepare for birth.
Please download and print them and share the links with others.
Qi Gong is gentle exercise that supports our body, mind and spirit. Research demonstrates decreased pain, increased ease and a decrease in stress and anxiety with this practice.
Enjoy these Qi Gong videos curated by Dr. Cynthia Neipris DACM of the Pacific University of Health and Sciences.
The ASRM, the American Society of Reproductive Medicine recommends that you wait out the COVID 19 crisis if you have not started an IVF cycle yet.
This is challenging news and can feel really hard. I CAN work with you on supplements, nutrition, Chinese herbal medicine and lifestyle support during this time. To schedule a Telehealth appointment with me go to: AmyMager.JaneApp.com
My office is closed to seeing patients in office as we are being asked to do so by Governor Baker.
As many of you know, in addition to patient care I do board service work as the Vice Chair of the American Society of Acupuncturists. This is a document created and released by our board to provide context.
I am available for Telehealth appointments. You can book them at: AmyMager.JaneApp.com
Contribution to the hive. Blessed be y’all
What can you do to stay healthy in the midst of the Covid-19 epidemic
No one can say it enough. Wash your hands – often and well with soap for 20 seconds when you enter your home, after using the bathroom, after touching your face, before and after eating, et..https://www.unicef.org/coronavirus/everything-you-need-know-about-washing-your-hands-protect-against-coronavirus-covid-19
Wash/sanitize your phone:https://www.cnet.com/how-to/help-keep-coronavirus-off-your-phone-how-to-effectively-clean-and-disinfect-your-device/
Stay calm and do whatever meditation or breathing practice you do to stay centered. Consider downloading an app like
Simply Being or Calm to help.
Breathe…in through your nose and out through your mouth.
Stay home. Seriously. Limiting contact limits possibility for transmission. Germs are opportunistic and each of us is or has loved ones whose heatlh we would not want to compromise. It’s not just about us.
Do not gather with others IRL – we have FB, IG, Facetime,Messenger and WhatsApp to connect with each other. Is it hard that my mom is in lockdown in her community? You bet. Is is safer for her? 100%
What’s Chinese Medicine got to do with it? Qi Gong: https://youtu.be/Nqn70lirWKc We all need to move our bodies, this will benefit us in multiple ways.
I am taking telemedicine phone and zoom calls at 413.222.8616
Warming foods are our friends. The best way to explain this is is to think about your body as an ATM (bear with me). When you eat something warm, it is an automatic energy deposit. When you eat something cold, it is an automatic energy withdrawal. Room temperature is neutral. All information coming out of China is this virus shows up in Chinese medical differential diagnosis as wet and cold. We use warm and spicy to combat wet and cold. Chicken soup, oatmeal with cinnamon and ginger tea are your best food friends. Please do limit cow and goat dairy as they are wet and cold by nature and temperature. Sugar generates wetness in Chinese medicine so, eat a little less.
Find your siver lining and use found time to play games with those you live with – board games are in and fun. Connect with family members who live with you and share stories, memories or bring back the lovely tradition and experience of snail mail letters.
Do exercise. Whether it’s a walk alone outside or lifting weights or using a machine in your house, activating your Qi/Life force will only help.
Drink adequate fluids and eat adequate fiber. Chia seeds are our friends and can be put into any kind of liquid to make pudding – worth a try!
Remember this is an opportunity to put what matters into perspective and be grateful for what we have. My father, of blessed memory, used to say, “I find that when I am grateful for what I have, rather than focussing on what I don’t, I am a much happier person.”
Heat Therapy: Moxa and Alternatives to Moxa By AMY MAGER, MS, LAc, FABORM, and CHRISTINE CRONIN, DAOM, LAc
Heat therapy is an integral treatment of Chinese medi- cine. Although we concur
with our colleagues that moxa is our best choice for heat therapy, barriers may exist that could prevent a pa-tient from using moxa or being able to use it often enough to have a ther-apeutic effect, yet in many instances, heat therapy is a necessary compo-nent of a patient’s treatment plan. In this article, we discuss historical references to the use and importance of moxa, alternatives to moxa us-ing other forms of heat therapy, and practical applications of heat therapy that patients can apply using com-mon household items.
HISTORICAL REFERENCES TO THE USE AND THE IMPORTANCE OF MOXA
Our classic texts discuss the need for moxa when appropriate, but also the dose or frequency in which it
is most effective. From The Golden Mirror of Medicine, we learn the importance of heat dosage: “When treating diseases with moxibustion,
for there to be any effect, the heat must be sufficient to obtain the Qi” (O’Conner & Bensky, 1981; Wiseman & Mitchell, 1999). This means that
it is not enough to wave the moxa stick above the point, but that the patient must experience the sensa-tion of the heat coming to the point. I was taught by Raven Lang to teach the patient to say “hot” when it is too warm for them and to immediately press the heat into the skin if using a moxa stick, or to remove the ibuki or direct moxa if one is using that, to ensure that the experience of the heat coming to the point three times is achieved.
Dharmananda (2004) discusses chapter 73 of the Lingshu, which states, “A disease that may not be treated [is not successfully treated] by acupuncture may be treated by moxibustion”. We see this situa-tion with a variety of patients. One example is with patients who have compromised or weak wei qi and get sick easily or frequently. Another instance is with patients in cold cli-mates (including the elderly) who have trouble staying warm, who are prone to cold conditions and often deplete their yang and jing. In ad-dition, heat therapy may be added to treat women with weak spleen qi who, for example, may have hemor-rhoids, or are working to get and stay pregnant. Furthermore, heat therapy is used with people who have either weak central qi, weak spleen qi, or both, accompanied by digestive is-sues. Heat therapy is also indicated for anyone with weak kidney qi or kidney yang. In short, moxa can be used in any instance where there is damage from cold and part of the treatment goal is to warm, nurture, and nourish qi and yang.
Moxa is always our first choice for heat therapy. Other options are a moxa pot, a favorite used by Miriam Lee, who had them made in China to her
specifications, or a moxa box, which may be made of brass or wood. If possible, if your patient has a family member or caregiver whom you trust to use a moxa stick, moxa pot, or moxa box on your patient without causing harm, moxa is the first choice.
Moxa is always our first choice for heat therapy. Other options are a moxa pot, a favorite used by Miriam Lee, who had them made in China to her specifications, or a moxa box, which may be made of brass or wood. If possible, if your patient has a family member or caregiver whom you trust to use a moxa stick, moxa pot, or moxa box on your patient without causing harm, moxa is the first choice.
However, while moxa is an in- credible therapy, the most adverse event is burns. Between 2005-2014, 4% of the claims that involved civil litigation or investigations by the acupuncture board and were paid by MIEC were the result of moxa burns (Medical Insurance Exchange of California, 2015). Please make sure you have an ashtray or small vessel with water to extinguish moxa balls for needle moxa, a scoop to remove needle moxa, and a place to extin-guish ibuki moxa on hand before you begin applying heat therapy with moxa. Also, ensure your patients and caregivers understand the possibility of burns.
In addition to burns, moxa is sometimes a poor fit for our patients or our colleagues. Due to the spaces
where we practice, co-workers who do not like or cannot tolerate the smell and smoke, or the perceptions of others, alternatives to moxa are necessary. All of these situations and many others bring us to possible al-ternatives to moxa.
ALTERNATIVES TO MOXA FOR HEAT THERAPY
As we said in the beginning, moxa is always our first choice. For example, moxa is used in postpartum care (Mager, 2018) to warm, nourish, and help the birth parent heal. Unfor- tunately, moxa doesn’t work well for every family for a variety of reasons. When barriers to receiving moxa exist or the appropriate amount of moxa to access de qi is an issue, and