MERULLI ACUPUNCTURE & WELLNESS

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Tips for Winter Blues


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10 Tips for Winter Blues

We’ve all been there before. Struggling to get out of bed, feeling lethargic and unmotivated. Here are some tips I’ve recommended to my patients over the years.

Image Copyright : dolgachov 
  1. Create movement. Run. Dance. Treadmill. Walk up and down the stairs in your building. Even some light stretching or yoga at home will help clear out stagnation in your system. The physical and emotional body are interwoven. You may have noticed when you are really upset or really happy how it effects how your body feels. The principle holds true for changing your mood or mindset by moving your body.
  2. Go outside. Being outside in nature will lift your mood even if its yucky out. Look upward toward the sky and roll your shoulders back to a comfortable posture, rolling your hands/ thumbs outward. You’ll change the alignment of your body to a more open relaxed state-a much needed reprieve from the hunched forward texting pose.
  3. Eat well. Choosing leafy greens will provide nutrients and also cleanse stagnation. The bitterness of the greens improves digestion and will provide clean nutrition without a heavy feeling.
  4. Listen to vigorous uplifting music. Feel free to move or jump while listening. Avoid dismal sounding music.
  5. Treat yourself. Self care is crucial. This includes getting extra sleep if you need it.
  6. Brighten up your environment. Make sure you have adequate lighting at home and work, especially when the days are shorter. While natural sunlight is better, any light will stimulate your brain’s photoreceptors. If you are lying in bed, trying to find the motivation to get up, you can place your cell phone over your forehead/eyebrows (third eye center/Ajna chakra) and use that forbidden blue light that keeps us awake at night to help wake us up in the morning.
  7. Have a glass of water. An Ayurvedic hack to help someone feel better is to give them a glass of water. This works well whether its irritability or depression. We are all a little dehydrated and its easy to forget to drink water in the colder months. Water helps us recenter. You may also add just a pinch of sea salt to your water to help with electrolyte balance. Check with your physician first if you were told to avoid salt for any reason.
  8. Help others. Taking a moment to focus on something outside yourself will lighten your mood. Hold open doors for others, smile (see tip #9 if this bugs you), let people in during heavy traffic, send a note to someone.
  9. Smile. This is contraversial for some as being told to smile and be nice isn’t always in your best interest. In this case though, I am suggesting you smile for yourself first. There is a neurological connection between your facial expression and your mood. Smiling makes you feel and look better too.
  10. Come in for a tune-up. Acupuncture can lift your mood and boost your metabolism.


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L&I Covers Acupuncture

Injured At Work? Acupuncture Can Return You To Your Job Faster.

The Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) will now cover up to 10 acupuncture treatments in WA State for back pain related to a work injury.

The criteria for coverage is that the pain must be a lumbar/low back pain work related injury. All you need to do is file a claim with your supervisor or HR department, and see your doctor for an acupuncture referral for L&I benefits.

I am a registered provider for Acupuncture L&I benefits. Please bring in your claim number and I will take care of the billing for you.

 

Print/Download New Patient Forms

New Patient Forms

LNI 2 Item Form

LNI OWESTRY Form

Suffering from back pain at office. Get Relief With Acupuncture.


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September Wellness Package!

You are invited to saunter into fall with the ultimate seasonal tune-up:

Acupuncture + 30 Minute massage

May your autumn be filled with peace and relaxation.

See you soon,

Desiree

Acupuncture + 30 Minute Massage Therapy $150 (Value $175)

Book your September wellness session right here

Acupuncture:
* Improves your mental focus & productivity.
* Reduces the effects of stress on your body.
* Calms your mind.
* Improves your sleep
* increases your energy

Package Includes Acupuncture Treatment + 30 Massage Therapy session.

Limited Time Offer: Purchase Online Between 9/3-9/30.

Not combinable with other offers or insurance.


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May Self-care Promo: Shirodhara

This month’s self-care promo, Shirodhara, is both grounding and luxurious. Shiro in Sanskrit means head, and Dhara means flow. This treatment begins with gentle massage of your hands and feet, then warm oil is poured over your forehead and scalp. Most people deeply relax and fall asleep during their session.

Wishing a Happy Spring!

Desiree
Luxuriant, Calming Shirodhara Treatment.
Luxuriant, Calming Shirodhara Treatment.
May Self-Care Promo!

What are the benefits of Shirodhara?

▪Reduces headaches, fatigue, stress, anxiety, and irritability
▪Leaves your hair soft and silky
▪Regulates the endocrine system
▪Softens facial lines and refreshes your complexion
▪Improves sleep
▪Engages your parasympathetic nervous system, providing deep relaxation and mental clarity
▪Enhances other therapies, such as yoga, acupuncture, massage and meditation

Book Your Self-Care Now


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10 Tips For The Cold And Flu Season

Acupuncture is very helpful in preventing colds and flu and accelerating healing.  Getting treatment is most effective right when you feel it coming on or when you are near the end.  It will also help during the middle of the cold/flu but its much more powerful at the beginning or the end.  Getting a treatment right when you notice the achy shoulders, fatigue, hint of a sore throat or nasal stuffiness will help you kick it before it gets you.

The CDC describes the flu season as the fall and winter months with a peak in February.  However the flu and cold germs are present everywhere year round and getting acupuncture regularly will boost your immunity.

1.  Enjoy some healing broth with fresh grated ginger and sliced scallions.  Bone

Broth with scallions and ginger will soothe a sore throat

broth is an ancient East Asian Medicine recipe for healing everything from colds and flu to injuries and post surgical recovery.  Ginger and scallions will help disperse phlegm and warm your system.  If you don’t have the energy to make the broth from scratch, some of the boxed broths aren’t too bad.  I have used the Whole foods organic low sodium broth.  It may not have all the nutrients as cooking the broth down yourself, but when you are sick, it will soothe and nourish you.  Regular consumption of bone broth will enhance your metabolism and overall health.

2.  Stay away from cough drops-even the “natural” ones as the sugar inflames the throat and keeps you coughing (and buying them).  If you need something to soothe your throat, take a teaspoon of raw honey, a dash of lemon and a teaspoon of grated fresh ginger as a tea in warm water.  Raw honey is anti-inflammatory, anti-viral/bacterial and an expectorant.  The ginger is warming and dispersing and will help get rid of the phlegm.  If you really think you want a cough drop, its better to get a piece of hard candy that you actually enjoy and do just that. Often when we are ill, we feel down and are in need of comfort and cough drops are an easy trap.

3.  Fresh pineapple juice contains bromelain, an immune boosting enzyme that helps break down phlegm in the body.  This provides relief especially if you have it sticking to the back of your throat.  But it must be real and fresh, not canned/frozen etc.  Please take the juice at room temperature in small amounts.

4.  Avoid sugar-it causes inflammation.

5.  Get rest.  Now is the time to take care of yourself.

6.  Take Vitamin D daily.  It will boost your immunity and your mood.
7.  Go outside often, even when the weather isn’t great to keep you in tune with the seasons.  This goes a long way to building your immunity and health.

8.  Frequently wash your hands using regular soap.  Anti-bacterial soap reduces your natural immunity.  You may also use alcohol based hand sanitizers.

9.  Stay home from work when you are sick.  This will allow you to get better faster and also avoid spreading the illness to others.  Going to work ill reduces the productivity of everyone else and prolongs your time being sick.

10.  Seasonal acupuncture tune-ups will keep your immune system running smoothly and prevent illness.

Tired of getting sick during the winter months?  To find out how acupuncture can help you,  contact me or schedule online.


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It’s spring allergy season-in full bloom!

Luna Moth on Fruit Tree BranchMost people are surprised to learn that acupuncture works for seasonal allergies. By strengthening the body’s immune mechanism it can process the offending allergens out more efficiently. And acupuncture, unlike allergy medications does not mask symptoms or have unpleasant side effects.

While taking allergy medication to survive daily life is sometimes necessary, acupuncture treatments have been shown to provide a safe, effective alternative. The effects of acupuncture are cumulative and require a series of sessions, but most patients report they can already breathe more freely after their first treatment. Many patients have reduced or stopped taking their allergy medications with acupuncture.

See also: 10 DIY Tips For Allergies

If you would like to book an appointment or would like more information, please call: 206-388-3349.  Free consultations are available to you.

 

breathe it all in


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Group Health PPO Network Expansion Starts Jan 1, 2014.

Merulli Acupuncture is pleased to announce the addition of Group Health PPO plans to the Seattle Clinic.  Access PPO, Options PPO starting Jan. 1, 2014, expands access to contracted providers and offers enhanced benefits when members use providers within designated care systems.

Questions about coverage? Please call my office 206-388-3349; I’m happy to check if your plan has coverage for acupuncture.

Schedule Online


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Acupuncture Helps Fibromyalgia

By Health CMI

New research concludes that acupuncture reduces pain sensitivity for patients suffering from fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). The study also showed that patients receiving acupuncture had significant reductions in anxiety and depression. Further, the overall quality of life score improved for FMS patients receiving acupuncture therapy.

Acupuncture reduces pain in patients with FMS. The treatment method was the application of five acupuncture points at a rate of once per week. The points were located in areas of discomfort near the occipital bone, rhomboid and trapezius muscles and in the region of the upper chest and lateral epicondyle. The results were published in the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies.

Fibromyalgia is a pain syndrome affecting the soft tissues and often involves sleep disturbances, tenderness at specific points, muscle pain, fatigue and depression. A literal translation of the term is pain of the muscles and fibrous tissues. Fibromyalgia is distinguished from most other forms of pain because it is non-nociceptive. Nociceptive pain involves inflammation and is triggered by pain receptors in the skin, muscles, joints and other tissues. FMS and other non-nociceptive types of pain conditions do not inherently involve inflammation and is a result of a disruption in central processing. Examples of non-nociceptive pain include irritable bowel syndrome, migraine headaches and FMS. It is estimated that FMS affects up to approximately 4% of the US population. In Chinese Medicine, FMS is due to Liver Qi stagnation, Bi syndrome, dampness with Wei Qi  obstruction, Qi deficiency and Yin deficiency. Acupuncture and herbal medicine are commonly used to treat FMS. Biomedical treatments for FMS include anti-depressants, serotonin reuptake inhibitors, sleep drugs, pain medications and nutritional supplements.

More Research
Another recent study published in Clinical Rheumatology concludes that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome. The researchers concluded that acupuncture demonstrates definitive “beneficial effects” in the treatment of fibromyalgia. Researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore also conclude that acupuncture is significantly effective in the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome in their new research. Other research performed at the prestigious Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Rochester concluded that acupuncture is effective in treating fibromyalgia and showed specific efficaciousness in its ability to reduce pain, fatigue and anxiety.

The mounting evidence suggests that acupuncture is a primary treatment for FMS. Emerging integrative medical clinics within the hospital and general medical system are helping in the delivery of acupuncture services to patients. However, most acupuncturists have individual or family group style medical practices in the US.

Acupuncture Numbers
Currently, there are slightly over 20,000 licensed acupuncturists in the USA. California has the most acupuncturists with a total of 6,682. New York has 1,909 licensed acupuncturists followed by Florida with a total of 1,719. Those numbers are up from 2009 when California had 6,578 acupuncturists, New York had 854 licensed acupuncturists and Florida had only 2,027 licensed acupuncturists. Massachusetts comes in fourth place with a total of 1,048 licensed acupuncturists. Colorado has 893 acupuncturists, Oregon has 830 acupuncturists, Texas has 796 acupuncturists and Washington has 753 acupuncturists. The numbers begin to drop-off at this point with Maryland having 667 acupuncturists, Illinois with 587 and New Jersey with 567 acupuncturists. Many states have under 100 acupuncturists and 6 states do not even have acupuncture licensing laws at all. Acupuncture has been proven to be an important and effective method for the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome but access to care remains an issue.
References:
Bastos, Jessica Lucia Neves, et al. “Effect of Acupuncture at Tender Points for the Management of Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Case Series.” Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies (2013).

An overview of systematic reviews of complementary and alternative medicine for fibromyalgia. Rohini Terry, Rachel Perry and Edzard Ernst. Clinical Rheumatology
Volume 31, Number 1 (2012), 55-66, DOI: 10.1007/s10067-011-1783-5.

Berman BM, Ezzo J, Hadhazy V, Swyers JP. Complementary Medicine Program, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore 21207, USA. The Journal of Family Practice [1999, 48(3):213-218].

Mayo Clin Proc. 2006 Jun;81(6):749-57. Improvement in fibromyalgia symptoms with acupuncture: results of a randomized controlled trial. Martin DP, Sletten CD, Williams BA, Berger IH. Department of Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minnesota.


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Study-Acupuncture Improves Sleep

Many people fall asleep during their sessions and find acupuncture improves sleep quality even when they are coming in for non-sleep issues.  Getting the proper sleep is essential for our health and well being.

13 January 2013

By Health CMI News

Electrical engineers in a medical research team discovered how acupuncture benefits sleep. They did it by measuring brain activity with EEG (electroencephalography) before, during and after an acupuncture treatment. Results were conclusive, acupuncture significantly increases slow wave activity of the brain relative to fast wave activity in both the frontal and central lobes. This phenomena is known to benefit the quality and duration of sleep.

acuEEGst36The acupuncture point used in this study increases the delta band power density, a known sleep related brain wave band. In addition, acupuncture at this point downregulates alpha and beta band activity relative to delta band activity. The decreases in these bands also enhances sleep quality.

The researchers applied manual acupuncture to humans at acupoint ST36. It was found that this acupoint significantly increases the power ratio index of slow waves to fast waves following an acupuncture treatment. Stainless steel 0.2 mm diameter acupuncture needles were applied to the subjects. The needles were applied and retained for an initial two minutes followed by manual rotation of the needles applied for another two minutes. Measurements were taken throughout the brain of the delta (0 – 4 Hz), theta (4 – 8 Hz), alpha (8 – 13 Hz) and beta (13 – 30 Hz) bands. Notably, there were increases in the delta band power in five major brain areas during and after acupuncture.

The researchers note that “acupuncture at ST36 can induce obvious changes in different EEG rhythms in healthy subjects.” They also note that acupuncture modulations of brain activity resulting from acupuncture point stimulation show “that the  brain plays a key role in acupuncture research.” They also suggest that “cortical electrical activities may be an important mechanism by which acupuncture exerts its complex multisystem effects.”

 

 

acupuncturest36thetaST36 Acupuncture EEG


Reference:
Chin. Phys. B Vol. 22, No. 2 (2013) 028703. Modulation of electroencephalograph activities by manual acupuncture stimulation in healthy subjects: An
autoregressive spectral analysis. Yi Guo-Sheng, Wang Jiang, Deng Bin, Wei Xi-Le, and Han Chun-Xiao.
a)School of Electrical and Automation Engineering, Tianjin University, Tianjin, China
b)Tianjin Key Laboratory of Information Sensing & Intelligent Control


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Acupuncture Found Effective For Plantar Fasciitis

New research concludes that acupuncture is effective for treating plantar fasciitis, a painful inflammatory foot condition. Plantar fasciitis typically presents with pain on the underside of the foot and heel. The pain is often most severe when first stepping out of bed onto the floor in the morning. Another telltale sign of plantar fasciitis is pain upon dorsiflexion, lifting the foot towards the shin.

Acupuncture for PainIn this controlled clinical investigation, the acupuncture group demonstrated a significant reduction in foot pain while the control group showed only minimal changes. The control group received five weeks of analgesic medications, stretching exercises and shoe modifications. The acupuncture group received the same therapies plus electro-acupuncture treatments. The researchers concluded that, “Electro-acupuncture coupled with conventional treatments provided a success rate of 80% in chronic planar fasciitis which was more effective than conventional treatments alone.”

Another recent study demonstrates that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of plantar heel pain. The researchers note that acupuncture has more significant improvements in both pain relief and the restoration of function than a standard regime of care that includes non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications. Based on these findings, the researchers formally recommend acupuncture for the treatment of plantar heel pain.

In yet another study, investigators concluded that acupuncture at acupoint P7 (Daling, “Big Tomb”) relieves the pain of plantar fasciitis. P7 is located in the middle of the transverse crease of the wrist. P7 is a Shu-Stream point and Yuan (Primary) acupuncture point that is known for the treatment of Heart and Spirit related issues including myocarditis, palpitations, insomnia, mental illness, irritability, and cardiac pain. P7 is also used for Stomach related conditions, however, nearby point P6 is a more common point for the treatment of Stomach issues such as stomachache, nausea, and vomiting.
According to Chinese medicine and acupuncture theory, Shu-Stream points treat a heavy sensation of the of the body and painful joints. P7 is therefore a common point for the treatment of wrist pain because it is a Shu-Stream point located at the wrist . However, the researchers have chosen P7 for the wrist’s distal relationship to the ankle and heel region. At a six month follow-up examination, the P7 acupuncture group showed a significant improvement over the control group.
Plantar fasciitis affects approximately 2 million US citizens annually. These findings demonstrate that acupuncture is an important treatment modality for inflammation of the connective tissue on the bottom of the foot. Advantages to acupuncture treatment are that it is both safe, acupuncture is nontoxic and is nonsurgical, and effective.

References:
The American Journal of Chinese Medicine, An International Journal of Comparative Medicine East and West. Efficacy of Electro-Acupuncture in Chronic Plantar Fasciitis: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Wipoo Kumnerddee and Nitsara Pattapong. Volume 40, Issue 06, 2012.

Shi Ping Zhang, Tsui-Pik Yip, and Qiu-Shi Li.  Acupuncture Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis: A Randomized Controlled Trial with Six Months Follow-Up. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative, Medicine, Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 154108.

Acupunct Med. doi:10.1136/acupmed-2012-010183. The effectiveness of acupuncture for plantar heel pain: a systematic review. Richard James Clark, Maria Tighe.