Do you suffer from allergies? Acupuncture can help!
Hong Ma, RAc., R.TCMP Acupuncturist & TCM Practitioner
The World Health Organization defines seasonal allergies, as well as asthma and sinusitis, as respiratory diseases that can be helped effectively with acupuncture.
An allergy is an excessive reaction by the immune system to a substance that is normally harmless. Such a substance is called an "allergen". The primary allergens are pollen, ragweed, dust, mites, pet hair, and certain chemical products.
Allergies are on the rise in Canada, partly due to contact with allergens and an increase in air pollution. However, the role of poor lifestyle habits (stress, fatigue, dietary-vitamin deficiencies, lack of exercise, etc.) and their effects on the immune system should not be discounted.
Allergies are often seasonal but can also be present year round. While they affect different people in different ways, the typical symptoms include itchy/red eyes, itchy palate, itchy and runny nose, sneezing and nasal congestion. These symptoms may be accompanied by headache, sinusitis, or a rash. In some cases, these will be the only signs of the allergy.
Studies now agree that acupuncture has an impact on the nervous and immune system. By stimulating the energy of the lung and by regulating the liver, the acupuncture treatment aims to calm the exaggerated response to the allergens. When symptoms are not so present, the treatment will aim to balance and strengthen the identified TCM disharmonies that contribute to the problem. Acupuncture treatments for allergies have therefore a preventative and therapeutic aspect. It is recommended that patients visit their acupuncturist before the season, or onset of symptoms, to obtain better results.