On a cold winter’s day I made my way down to Essex to meet with Melissa Maki for an acupuncture session. My goal for the new year was to try new things, and I got an early start the second day of 2014.
Melissa welcomed me into her new space at NEW Health, which I had seen once before while it was still a work in progress. The finished space was very inviting with bright, warm-colored walls. It was very easy to relax into this atmosphere especially with Melissa’s comforting demeanor.
Melissa began our meeting with discussion to allow her to gain greater understanding of me and my body and to make sure I was comfortable. She told me that during the treatment she could be as silent or as talkative as I wished. For me, it was more interesting to ask questions and listen as Melissa explained her actions and the reasoning for choosing certain acupuncture points and meanings behind them.
An aspect I never considered was the need to map out the acupuncture points before treatment, which in hindsight makes sense because each person’s body is shaped differently and acupuncture is a precise art. To be sure that she knew where my acupuncture points were Melissa measured and mapped them out with a pen in the areas she treated.
Acupuncture Detox and Treatment
Melissa was diligent about repeatedly taking pulses in both wrists to get a baseline before treatment and to see how each step of the treatment affected the body and adjusted her plan accordingly.
Since this was my first appointment the treatment began with a detox called “Aggressive Energy Drain.” I sat in a forward-facing chair (pictured to the left) for about 20 minutes with 12 needles and one “test” needle (which was not placed at an acupuncture point and gave a baseline for how my skin reacted to the needles) in my back. The detox expels negative energies and toxins that may have been consumed, which can be observed as redness or heat; the treatment lasts until those signs disappear. It was explained to me this way:
“The needles used correspond to the points for the Yin organs in the body. Yin is dense, so these organs would be Heart, Pericardium, Lung, Liver, Spleen, and Kidney. The job of these organs in our body is to absorb toxicity like a sponge, in order to protect the rest of your body.
Toxicity can be physical, like breathing in chemicals or air pollution, anesthesia during surgeries, or eating chemicals that are in processed foods. Toxicity can also be emotional, like shock & trauma, dealing with abuse, feeling pressured and stressed at your job, death & grief, and the ups and downs of relationships in our lifetime.
When this kind of toxicity happens and we are unable to process it through in a healthy way, our yin organs scoop it up and store it, again, to protect the larger being. The acupuncture needles that are put in during AE target each of these yin organs and drain out this toxicity (aggressive energy).” ~Melissa Maki
After the detox, during which Melissa made a plan for me and chose which points she would work with, several of my acupuncture points were treated with moxibustion (a herb also known as mugwort) and most of those points were also stimulated with needles. During regular treatment Melissa does not leave needles inserted but quickly places the needle into the acupuncture point and immediately takes it out.
When using moxibustion Melissa shapes it into a ball smaller than a pea and places on the skin, then it is lit with an incense stick. It may sound shocking that it is on fire, but Melissa removes the herb before it burns completely down and it simply heats and stimulates the acupuncture point. It is possible to have a session with just moxi. for those uncomfortable with needles.I’ve never been afraid of needles, but I certainly don’t like them. However acupuncture needles are much different from the shots and needles seen in a traditional doctor’s office. Acupuncture needles are much finer.
When we began I felt a tiny sting, so Melissa switched to an even finer needle than the standard which she keeps on hand for those with sensitive skin, and honestly, I did not feel most of the needles during my session. Acupuncture with Melissa is nothing to be frightened of or painful , and it was certainly a learning experience for me. I may even try it again!
Do You Want to Try Acupuncture?
If you’re curious or experiencing health issues that conventional medicine is not enough for, then consider trying Five Element Acupuncture with Melissa. Acupuncture can also be used for proactive health care as well.
Learn more about Melissa Maki and her acupuncture practice and contact her if you’re interested at (802) 349-6295 or email@example.com.
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