Acupuncture can help reduce chronic pain and symptoms of fibromyalgia, chemical sensitivity, and various other maladies. Nancy Moore, L.Ac. provides an excellent overview of multiple chemical sensitivity on the Multiple Chemical Sensitivity page of her acupuncture clinic website. Nancy tells us that chemical sensitivity affects more than 16% of the population—10 million have severe symptoms, while 25-45 million have mild to moderate sensitivity.
How acupuncture helps
Nancy goes on to explain how acupuncture can help chemical sensitivity:
Those with MCS are, basically, unable to process the toxins in their environment because of damage to their livers and kidneys. Stress is a major factor in their lives because of constant exposure to unavoidable “ordinary” toxins and because of lack of understanding from their co-workers, friends, families, and health care practitioners. The world seems a tricky, dangerous place to people with MCS.
Acupuncture can offer help and hope for people with MCS by providing slow and deliberate detoxification, alleviation of symptoms, and restoration of emotional health and optimism. Acupuncture’s ability to bring the whole system back into a place of balance is more important in cases of MCS than in most other conditions. Treatments are by necessity highly individualized to each person’s specific symptoms and life situations; there is no set protocol for everyone with MCS. The body’s systems are already so compromised that a gentle, deliberate approach is always appropriate. The relaxing, restorative effects of acupuncture provide a calm center from which to begin the process of healing.
Acupuncture has been my mainstay during many periods of my life. My access to acupuncture was limited in recent years when I was hard hit by ill-health and chemical sensitivity. I began acupuncture once again about three months ago. There is no quick fix for the level of depletion and sensitivity I have developed, but I can heartily say that I am growing gradually stronger as each week goes by. I personally find acupuncture extremely beneficial.
Finding a safe setting for acupuncture
Finding a safe place to receive acupuncture can be a challenge for those with chemical sensitivity. However, there are acupuncturists like Nancy Moore and my acupuncturist who have a fragrance free policy at their office and who do not use the loose Chinese herbs that impart their unique odors to any space. A very well ventilated treatment room is also important. Even with a fragrance free policy, other patients can make mistakes or not realize their freshly laundered clothes are off-gassing. Because of this, I’ve set myself up for the very first morning appointment to avoid close encounters of the perfumed kind.
My suggestion is to call ahead and ask the acupuncturist the kinds of questions I list below or other questions relevant to your needs.
Have you treated people with chemical sensitivity?
Do you use fragrance? Is fragrance used in your office? Do you stock loose Chinese herbs?
Do you launder your sheets, etc. in fragrance free detergent without the use of fabric softener and dryer sheets? Do you have a fragrance free policy at your office?
Is the treatment room well ventilated? Would you be willing to ventilate it well before my appointment?
Is there a first morning appointment regularly available.
What style of acupuncture do you use? Is it gentle?
Acupuncture is the keystone of my wellness plan. However, we are all different and respond to different healing modalities. By exploring, we can each find the approaches that are optimal to our own well being.
To your health! Sandra
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