Acupuncture for Menopause
What is Menopause and Perimenopause?
Menopause is a natural transitionary period in every woman's life. It is defined as the point in time at which a woman has not menstruated in the last 12 months. On average in the US, this occurs at age 51. However, perimenopause, or the period leading up to menopause, can start in the 40s or 30s for some women. Symptoms experienced during this transitionary period can range from mild to severe and can last up to 10 years for some unfortunately women. Such symptoms can include hot flashes, night sweats, low libido, vaginal dryness, brain fog, wieght gain, mood swings, irregular periods, heavy periods, painful periods, and loss of skin elasticity. Although this change is inevitable, the syptoms don't have to be disruptive to your quality of life. Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can help.
How Chinese Medicine Views Menopause
At the core of Traditional Chinese Medicine is the concept of Yin and Yang. While Yang is the masculine energy, Yin is the feminine one. Yin represents the cool, dark, moist, restful, and soft energy. As a woman approaches menopause, the Yin energy declines. This can lead to the typical menopausal symptoms of hot flashes, night sweats, irritability, restlessness, and dryness.
The Liver and Kidneys play key roles when it comes to menopause. The Liver regulates the movement of blood and energy throughout the body. It stores the blood and nourishes the muscles, tendons, eyes, hair, and nails. The Liver is also in charge of emotions like irritability and anger. As the Liver becomes unbalanced with menopause, menstural irregularities and mood changes can occur.The Kidneys play a very important role in growth and development, reproduction, and regulating water. The Kidneys are associated with the bones and teeth and the emotion it is tied to is fear. When the Kidneys become out of balance with menopause, that can lead to anxiety, frequent urination, weakening of bones and teeth, and the decline of reproductive abilities.
Acupuncture for the Treatment of Menopause
Acupuncture is a natural and effective way to help reduce the symptoms and smooth out the transition into menopause. Acupuncture can help relieve the symptoms of menopause and periomenopause by boosting the Yin energy as well as balancing the Liver and the Kidneys. Our acupuncturists are very experienced in treating menopausal issues and will look at your individual symptoms to come up with a treatment plan that works best for you.Some of the acupuncture points our acupuncturists may use include:
- KD3 - This point nourishes and supports the Kidneys as well as helps to promote both Yin and Yang energy.
- KD6 - This point specifically nourishes the Kidney Yin energy and can very useful for hot flashes and night sweats.
- SP6 - This is a great point for nourishing the Yin energy of the body in general and is important for treating gynecological issues.
- LI11 - This point has a cooling effect on the body and is therefore very useful in reducing hot flashes and night sweats.
- HT6 - This point helps to calm emotions, promotes sleep, and helps with night sweats.
- LV2 - This is a good point for draining heat from the Liver and can help reduce irritability and blood pressure.
In addition to acupuncture, we may use electro-stimulation to more aggressively stimulate the acupuncture points and encourage the body to release natural "feel-good" hormones like endorphins and serotonin.We may also recommend herbal and dietary therapy, which can play a key role in treating menopausal symptoms as well.
Menopause is a natural transitionary period in every woman's life where change is inevitable. However, that change doesn't need to be uncomfortable, disruptive, or stressful. Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can help ease that transition to make that process go as smoothly as possible. It is a proven method of treatment that helps your body more easily prepare for that next phase in life. Take a look at this article on WebMD that talks about Danish study that showed that acupuncture can help bring relief for menopausal symptoms.
At our Chicago acupuncture clinic located in the Loop, we have a lot of experience helping women suffering from menopausal and perimenopausal symptoms. We are board certified Licensed Acupuncturists and our clean and relaxing office space provides a safe oasis to receive acupuncture treatments and get relief from your symptoms. Contact us to schedule an acupuncture appointment at our Chicago office today.
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