Chinese medicine

Is Chinese Medicine the Answer for Chronic Pain Managment ?

Eastern medicine has gained increasing respect in recent years as people have sought out less conventional approaches for managing their chronic pain. Having exhausted all Western solutions my Mom decides to explore some alternative treatments more common in Eastern cultures. What follows is her first hand account of her first step into the mysterious world of Chinese Medicine.

East Meets West

By: Barbara Hurwitz

I shuffled into Solace Pain Management & Rehabilitation, “The Chinese medicine factory” to receive the most amazing treatment in America. Although a bit intimidated by the non-English speaking Chinese receptionist, the visit was well worth the language challenge.

I arrived 30 minutes early to the pristine facility to complete a 15 page medical history written in both Chinese and English. Chairs were filled with patients waiting silently and apparently engrossed in the Chinese news broadcast from the large flat screen TV in the reception room. English subtitles helped fill my time as I waited the 10 minutes to be seen Dr. Yao.

After a brief assessment of my back pain, she slipped me off to an acupuncturist whose needles soon rested in my spine beside electrodes set to tingle at the highest bearable intensity. There I was to enjoy a peaceful rest under the warmth of an electric heat lamp and calming sounds of Chinese spa music. Verbal communication was minimal, but the message was clear, I was to push the alarm placed in my hand, should I need any help.

Acupuncture for chronic pain

Thirty minutes later, a now electrified human pincushion, I was transferred to the laser room where I received ten minutes of laser heat and vibration therapy before being transferred yet again to the roller bed similar to my nail salon massage chair but with greater intensity and flat on my back.

I was feeling pretty good until the technician told me to follow her to a room for my head massage. My questions unanswered, reluctantly I followed behind to another room, noting the quickest escape route.When a large Asian man, entered the room telling me more with hand motions than words, to lay on the massage table face down I recognized the translation faux pas. 30 minutes later I rose from that table after the most amazing back massage I’ve ever experienced.

The feet that shuffled into this center, walked me out upright and pain free, but my head was somewhere in the clouds, my voice was 3 octaves lower, and my eye makeup decorated my cheeks; I was incredibly relaxed. I drove home, but probably shouldn’t have, and the original plan to stop at the grocery store for dinner fixings was scrapped. Home resting comfortably on the heating pad as instructed, I can’t wait to return for my next visit . Did I mention all of this came with a $30 insurance copay. The best spent $30 ever!

Barbara Hurwitz is a writer and learning specialist. For more of her writing and links to her published works please visit her website.

Have you tried acupuncture or other forms of Chinese medicine? Would love to hear about your experiences venturing East!

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