Clinic Reopening May 5th!

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding during this time. We are excited to announce that are reopening next week on Tuesday May 5!! Now with this excitement we are also putting in place some policies to keep our clinic a safe place for all. Please read the following updates precautionary measures and policies we are implementing to maintain best practices during this time.

At this time, we are suspending cosmetic acupuncture treatments until further notice per Knox County guidelines. No procedures are allowed if the client has to remove a face mask.

Clinic Policies: 
 

1. Please arrive on time for your appointment or wait indoor vehicle instead of coming into the waiting room. 

2. Patients are asked to come alone to their visit unless they are accompanying a minor. 

3. Patients and guardians are asked to bring and wear a cloth mask during their appointment. Staff will also be wearing masks. 

4. Patients and guardians are asked to wash hands with soap and water immediately upon arriving for their appointment. 

Upon the arrival your temperature will be taken and you will be asked the following questions:  

  1. Have you been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19? 
  2. Are you experiencing cough, shortness of breath, or a sore throat? 
  3. Have you had a fever in the last 48 hours? 
  4. Have you had a new loss of taste or smell? 
  5. Have you had vomiting or diarrhea in the last 24 hours?


Patients will not be seen if they: 

  1. Answered yes to any of the above questions. 
  2. Have a fever over 100.4 degrees. 

 These precautionary measures are from TN’s guidelines for reopening and will changed as needed to keep everyone as safe as possible as we navigate this next phase. Please be patient with us as we will also be keeping a lighter schedule to ensure enough time to properly clean and create a safe space for our staff and patients. 


Keep an eye on our social media pages and connect with us! We will continue to be available via email, social media, phone if you would like to schedule or reach out with questions during this time. 

With our hearts, 

Kate, Sarah, and Alex

Clinical Precautions for COVID-19

At Maryville Acupuncture, we’re proactively taking steps to reduce the risk of the COVID-19 coronavirus to our community of patients and staff, especially now with a confirmed case of coronavirus in Tennessee. We’d like to share with you a few preventative measures to ensure the health and well-being of our patients and staff, as well as some links to helpful public health information. Our aim is to make our clinic a healthy place for all.

Many of our patients present with common non-contagious/non-serious upper respiratory symptoms such as allergies, asthma or a lingering cough following a cold, which we will continue to treat these conditions as they do not pose a risk to others. 

If you are sick, the best option is to stay home. The main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, coughing and shortness of breath. Call your primary care physician if you’re in need of medical attention for these concerns. If you need to cancel your appointment due to illness, you will not be charged. We understand and will happily help you reschedule.

Some things to remember:

  • Please use hand sanitizer when you check in at the front desk, or wash your hands in the bathroom. We also have hand sanitizer in the treatment rooms. Feel free to help yourself. When washing your hands, please wash for at least 20 seconds.
  • We change sheets, pillowcases and face cradle covers after each patient.
  • We regularly sanitize surfaces that are frequently touched such as door knobs, doors and faucets. We clean our bathroom regularly. 
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow rather than onto your hands. If you sneeze or cough on your hands or into tissues or a handkerchief, please wash your hands or use hand sanitizer afterwards.
  • If you are coughing for any reason, please wear a mask. We understand it may be from allergies, asthma, or even heartburn, but it will help alleviate concerns from others sharing the space.
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose, eyes and face with unwashed/non-sanitized hands.

Here are some more guidelines and links to inform you about how to take care of yourself and recommended practices regarding COVID-19:

CDC Facts About COVID-19

FAQ by an Intensive Care and Infectious Disease Physician

American Society of Acupuncturists Covid-19 Fact Sheet

Business and Employer Guidelines

We appreciate your understanding. With your participation we can continue to serve the patients who need us and keep our clinic a healthy and safe place for all. Thank you.

Acupuncture and Weight Loss

Acupuncture and Weight Loss…yes, kind of

At least once a week in the clinic, I get the question “Can acupuncture help with weight loss?” My answer – “yes… kind of” – has a long caveat in front of it, so let’s break it down. 

Here’s a view of both sides

Here’s the bad news – acupuncture alone will (most likely) not cause you to lose weight. Let’s be real, I wish I had the magic bullet for weight loss as much as anyone. But, it’s more important to me to be honest; and my honest truth is that acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can help support you in your weight loss journey, not make the weight fall off for you. Unfortunately. 

The good news is, though, that even though there’s no mystical, magical weight loss point, incorporating regular acupuncture into a weight loss regimen can make your journey easier, more comfortable and more enjoyable. Here’s how: 

Keeping you comfortable during exercise

Most weight loss programs incorporate exercise, and we all know that increasing exercise usually means some type of discomfort – like achy knees, backs, feet and shoulders. Acupuncture can help you recover quickly from any of these exercise related aches and pains so that you can get back to the trail, treadmill or pool. 

Optimizing your metabolism

Healthy metabolism comes from healthy digestion. Acupuncture can help regulate your digestion so you’re absorbing nutrients and eliminating wastes optimally, which will fuel your metabolism and support burning calories. 

Managing stress and maintaining motivation

Weight loss can be stressful, with all the changes to your lifestyle, schedule and diet. Using acupuncture to manage stress can help decrease your cortisol, which can support weight loss. And decreased stress allows your motivation to stay present and focused on your weight loss goal. 

Keeping cravings at bay 

This is about as close to a magical weight loss point as it comes – there are protocols, specifically involving auricular (ear) acupuncture, that can help diminish cravings. To be clear, this won’t keep you from eating unhealthy food, but it does give you a little extra emotional and energetic support when it comes to making the choice not to eat unhealthy food. 

Maryville Acupuncture and acupuncture for weight loss

So, there’s the skinny on how acupuncture can support you on your weight loss journey. Making changes is hard and we’re here to help.

If you’d like to talk more about how incorporating acupuncture can support a healthier you, don’t hesitate to reach out via email (info@maryvilleacupuncture.com), social media, or give us a call at 865.315.3157.

Acupuncture and Surgery

Book an appointment now!

Should you seek acupuncture around surgery?

There are times when surgery is necessary, and we often get questions from our patients regarding the use of acupuncture before and after surgery. In most cases, acupuncture is a great option to help ease symptoms before and after surgery, as well as to help you heal from your procedure.

Break it down

Schedule an appointment today.

Here’s a little break down of how we use acupuncture to foster the most comfortable and healthy surgical experience. 

  1. Managing pain pre-procedure – The most common reason people receive surgery is because something hurts! And unless you’re receiving an emergency procedure, you’ll likely have to wait days or weeks from your time of diagnosis to your procedure. Although it won’t be able to repair the damaged structures causing your issue, acupuncture can help decrease your body’s pain signaling and tissue inflammation, which will do a lot to relieve your pain. Whether it’s from a shoulder injury, a colon issue, a car accident, or anything in between, if you’re in pain, acupuncture is a good option to help keep you comfortable until your procedure.
  2. Decreasing the side effects of anesthetics/analgesics and recovering quicker from them – Another reason we see our patients before and after surgery is to help the body process the drugs needed for anesthesia and analgesia. These drugs that “put you to sleep” during surgery can have quite a few side effects, such as nausea, constipation dizziness and confusion. Acupuncture supports your liver’s ability to process these drugs and eliminate them from your body, so that you return to feeling “normal” quicker. It can also encourage bowels to move that have been slowed by analgesics, which naturally relieves constipation. 
  3. Wound healing and procedure recovery – Acupuncture has been shown to decrease post-procedural wound healing time and increase range of motion. It decreases systemic inflammation and upregulates your immune response so that the efforts your body is making to repair itself become even more effective and quicker. This anti-inflammatory effect will also extend to any joints that have been operated on, allowing them to move more comfortably when they are ready. 
  4. Managing stress  – Regardless of the type of procedure you’re preparing for, and how your body is feeling, anticipating surgery can cause its own anxieties – about the procedure itself, the recovery, taking time off work, taking care of your responsibilities while you recover, etc. Acupuncture is especially helpful to calm your mind and body in these moments so that you can approach your procedure and the decisions surrounding it from a healthy emotional state. 

Building your healthcare team

Here at Maryville Acupuncture, we’re committed to serving as part of your healthcare team. When you’re anticipating a procedure, we always request that you inform your surgeon’s team that you’re receiving acupuncture.

We’re happy to answer any question you —  or your surgeon — may have regarding the safety and efficacy of acupuncture in respect to your procedure. 

References:

Sang In Park, Yun-Young Sunwoo, Yu Jin Jung, et al., “Therapeutic Effects of Acupuncture through Enhancement of Functional Angiogenesis and Granulogenesis in Rat Wound Healing,” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2012, Article ID 464586, 10 pages, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1155/2012/464586.

Jung, Se Yun et al. “Effect of Acupuncture on Postoperative Ileus after Distal Gastrectomy for Gastric Cancer.” Journal of gastric cancer vol. 17,1 (2017): 11-20. doi:10.5230/jgc.2017.17.e2

Self Guide To Topicals for Pain Relief

We love topical herbs here in the clinic! Specifically, there are two formulas we use often in treatments to treat musculoskeletal pain: po sum on and white flower oil.

Po Sum On is a proprietary blend of Chinese herbs and peppermint oil that we use to warm the muscles and joints, especially in the cases of chronic pain/injury. This oil is especially good for old back aches, neck aches, and sore arthritic fingers. 

White Flower Oil is a common analgesic liniment in China for aches and pains. In the clinic we use it when we want to cool the body – in cases of acute strain or flares of old injuries. It contains menthol, camphor, lavender, wintergreen and other oils that produce a cold sensation on the skin.

Here at Maryville Acupuncture, our practitioners utilize their years of experience treating pain of all sorts. Each visit, your acupuncturist will assess the quality, intensity, duration and frequency of your pain, as well as your current treatment regimens with your PCP and/or other physicians. We strive to be another source of excellent care as part of your integrated healthcare team. 


Forest Folk Fungi A Local Immune Boost

Maryville Acupuncture and boosting the immune system.

Here at Maryville Acupuncture we like to support and carry local products. We’re so happy to announce that we’re now carrying two formulas from Forest Folk Fungi to support your immunity during cold and flu season!

Mushrooms and their role in Chinese Medicine

Mushrooms have been treasured for thousands of years for their ability to keep us healthy, and modern science has proven their specific effects in upregulating our production of immune cells that fight infection. 

Forest Folk Fungi Products:

The Elderberry Reishi formula is a delicious way to help keep you healthy by combining the strong antioxidant properties of elderberry with the bacteriostatic and immune regulation functions of reishi. It’s got a beautiful dark red color and flavored with ginger, cinnamon, lemon and honey.

The Thrive Adaptogenic formula blends reishi and cordyceps with schisandra, milky oat seed, eleuthero, rhodiola and ginseng to help your body resist the effects of physical, emotional and mental stress. This hefty dose of adaptogens will ease your nerves, soothe your stress and allow your body to respond fully to whatever cold and flu season brings.

Check out Maryville Acupuncture for local products!

All Forest Folk Fungi products are wild-foraged, organically grown and handmade in the Chattanooga area. Don’t miss out on these tinctures this month!  

It’s important to us that you feel comfortable and informed about your treatment, so we want to make sure all your questions are answered. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us by phone or email if we can help at all!


How Does Acupuncture Treat Allergies?

Since moving to East Tennessee, I’ve heard it called “the allergy capital of the world.” It seems that most people in our area suffer from seasonal allergies of some sort. 

When we come in contact with an environmental allergen, like pollen, the immune cells in the mucous membranes of our eyes, nose and throat go into high gear, causing increased inflammation. This leads to swollen sinuses and increased mucous production – which causes all the symptoms we associate with seasonal allergies –  runny nose, watery eyes, dry cough, headache and congested sinuses.

Acupuncture has been shown to effectively treat many seasonal allergy symptoms.

In fact, a 2018 study in Germany showed that an 8-week course of acupuncture treatment was more effective than cetirizine (Zyrtec) in managing allergy symptoms during peak allergy season. 

When seeking acupuncture for the management of allergy symptoms, we recommend that you plan for 6-8 weekly treatments.

Although some people may experience immediate results on the table, it often takes a few weeks for the inflammation in your body to decrease such that you are symptom-free. Once you are feeling well, you will likely want to continue to see your acupuncturist every 6-8 weeks during the allergy “off-season.”

Whether you’re plagued by itchy eyes, runny nose, stuffy sinuses, headache, or dry cough, know that acupuncture can help. Give us a call or visit our website to schedule your first visit. 

References:

(n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.nccaom.org/

Lift Chair, Increasing Handicap Accessibility For All

We wanted to announce that our clinic is becoming even more handicap accessible—

We now have a new lift chair! 

We hope this new addition will help our patients find their treatments more accessible and comfortable. 

Lift Chairs are ideal solutions for anybody who has difficulty transitioning from a seated position to standing due to limited mobility or balance issues. The benefits of being able to extend far beyond assistance by simply sitting down and standing up. 

At Maryville Acupuncture, we strive to work integratively to support the achievement of your health goals, and ensure you have access to the best possible care while we work closely with your team of doctors.

We’re honored to bring acupuncture to our neighbors here in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, and look forward to being a part of your health care team!

Acupuncture & Cancer Pain

Treating pain can be difficult, regardless of its origin, but treating cancer pain can be particularly tricky because it often has multiple causes.

According to Paley, et. al.: “Moderate to severe pain is experienced by 40% of individuals with early or intermediate stage cancer and 90% of individuals with advanced cancer. Up to 70% of all patients with cancer pain do not receive adequate pain relief, diminishing their quality of life in terms of both physical and psychological well-being.”

Tumors can compress structures, nerves can become irritated, inflammation multiplies, bones and organs can be taxed in their response to tumors or therapies – each pain is complex and often will often be prescribed a new therapy or drug in response. 

But, acupuncture provides an accessible and safe alternative to pain management without the need of added pharmaceuticals.

In a recent position paper published by the research group Evidence Based Acupuncture, a literature review showed that many studies found a moderate effect size of acupuncture on cancer-related pain, and concluded that: “…acupuncture is effective in relieving cancer related pain, particularly malignancy-related and surgery induced pain.”

Here at Maryville Acupuncture, our practitioners utilize their years of experience treating pain of all sorts.

Each visit, your acupuncturist will assess the quality, intensity, duration and frequency of your pain, as well as your current treatment regimens with your oncologist and other physicians.

We strive to be another source of excellent care as part of your integrated healthcare team.

Resources:

“Acupuncture as a Therapeutic Treatment for Cancer Pain.” Evidence Based Acupuncture, www.evidencebasedacupuncture.org/acupuncture-cancer-pain/.

Paley, C.A., Johnson, M.I., Tashani, O.A. and Bagnall, A.M., 2011. Acupuncture for cancer pain in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev1(10).

Acupuncture Needles

Acupuncture Needles
Acupuncture Needles

What are acupuncture needles?

Acupuncture needles have been used for many centuries. While the majority of acupuncture started with less modern materials, such as bones, sticks and bamboo.  

Acupuncture needles have advanced with new technology. Modern needles are fine, filiform (no hole down the middle of the shaft) needles made from surgical steel and come in sterile packs.

They range in thickness from 30 to 40 gauge, which is about the diameter of a hair (in contrast, the needle that a phlebotomist uses to draw your blood is between 18 and 22 guage, which is much much thicker).

 Acupuncture needles range in length from about 0.5 inches to 4-5 inches, but most often in the clinic we use 0.5-1.5 inches. 

Do acupuncture needles hurt?

Acupuncture is generally considered to be painless by most of our patients. We understand that sensitivity can be different for everyone. The majority of people would say no and that they can’t even feel them. Though, there are many different sensations associated with acupuncture. Some people can feel the “Qi” some don’t and that’s okay.

We’ll link to our article about Qi here

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What do you do with your needles?

At Maryville Acupuncture, all of our needles are single use, sterile and disposed of in a sharps container. We never reuse needles. 

These needles are left in place for 20-25 minutes while you rest comfortably.

What else should I expect during a treatment?

There are additional modalities such as cupping, electro-stimulation, lifestyle changes (diet, exercise, stress management) and traditional Chinese medicinal practices that are occasionally incorporated into your treatment to give you the best benefit.