All and One
Acupuncture Blog

  • Improve memory and learning with acupuncture

    August, 31st 2014

    Having difficulties focusing, remembering tasks or organizing your thoughts? Acupuncture can help optimize your brain power through a treatment approach that incorporates different modalities, including nutritional support.

    According to acupuncture medical theory, the spirit (Shen) embodies consciousness, emotions and thought. Shen influences long term memory, the ability to think clearly, contributes to wisdom and presides over activities that involve mental and creative functions. When the mind is healthy we are able to think clearly. When the mind is unhealthy or unbalanced, we experience confusion, poor memory, and clouded thinking.

    A healthy mind involves harmony between the brain (Sea of Marrow) and the spirit (Shen). Disharmony of the mind often manifests as anxiety, insomnia, muddled thinking, forgetfulness and chronic restlessness. You can enhance this harmony with meditation and acupuncture, as well as physical exercises such as Tai Chi or Qi Gong. The right foods can balance and strengthen the mind by providing essential nutrients such as flavonoids, Omega 3s, vitamins, folate and iron that are great for improving the quality and quantity of learning capacity, cognitive abilities, memory and overall brain function.

    Acupuncture Improves Memory and Learning Capacity

    The Spleen, Kidney and Heart organ systems all influence intellect. For example the Du meridian influences all neurological activity by nourishing, stimulating or calming the brain and spirit. The Spleen organ system influences short-term memory, analytical thinking and concentration and is damaged by worry and poor nutrition. The Kidney organ system influences short-term memory and retention, and is damaged by fear and aging. The Heart organ system influences long-term memory and recall and is damaged by emotional and chemical over-stimulation. To enhance general learning Oriental medicine focuses on improving the flow of Qi to the brain, regulation of information processing and response to external stimuli.

    According to a study published in the October 2008 issue of Neuroscience Letters, acupuncture can significantly improve learning and memory capacity that has been impaired by hyperglycemia and cerebral ischemia. Researchers reported on whether electroacupuncture (acupuncture needles stimulated with a mild electrical current) could improve learning and memory in rats whose memory and cognitive functions were impaired by the decreased circulatory effects of diabetes resulting in cerebral ischemia.

    In the study, the effects of the acupuncture treatments were measured with a passive avoidance test, an active avoidance test, the Morris water maze and electrophysiology. With all tests, significant improvements were seen in restored memory and learning capacity. Researchers believe that the positive results of this study indicate similar benefits for humans and warrant further investigation.

    If you live in Portland, call All and One Acupuncture in northeast Portland today to learn how acupuncture can optimize your mental skills!

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  • Acupuncture for Cancer Treatment Support

    August, 29th 2014

    The American Cancer Society has reported that half of all men and a third of all women in the United States will develop cancer during their lifetimes. Although there are many forms of cancer, all forms of the disease begin with abnormal cells that grow out of control.

    Unlike other illnesses that are eradicated by the body’s natural defense system, cancer needs to be treated with powerful medical interventions. Unfortunately, most of the current cancer treatments available have some debilitating side effects.

    Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine have received much attention as an adjunctive therapy in cancer treatments because they address many of the unpleasant symptoms and side effects that come up during and after chemotherapy, radiation, biological therapy and surgery.

    If you are currently undergoing treatment for cancer, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can provide real help by decreasing many of the side effects associated with conventional cancer treatments.

    Some of the issues acupuncture can help with include:

    • Pain Management
    • Nausea
    • Stress
    • Fatigue
    • Depression and Anxiety
    • Dry Mouth
    • Night Sweats and Hot Flashes
    • Fluid Retention
    • Weight Maintenance

    Acupuncture takes a holistic approach to health care and is particularly useful in providing pain relief, reducing the impact of side effects, accelerating recovery and improving overall quality of life.

    According to the National Cancer Institute, acupuncture may cause physical responses in nerve cells, the pituitary gland, and parts of the brain. It is proposed that, by stimulating physical responses in these areas, acupuncture positively affects blood pressure and body temperature, boosts immune system activity, and causes the body’s natural painkillers, such as endorphins, to be released.

    All and One Acupuncture is located in northeast Portland.  Call us today to learn more about how acupuncture can safely and effectively be incorporated into an oncology treatment plan. 

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  • Acupuncture for Injury Recovery and Prevention

    August, 27th 2014

    Don’t let your pledge to get into shape be derailed by a sports injury. Fitness clubs across the country are full of enthusiastic individuals giving it their all to get fit or drop a few pounds. Unfortunately, some of these new athletes try to do too much too quickly, and can pay a painful price.

    Some sports injuries commonly treated by acupuncture include pulled muscles, neck pain, shoulder impingement, tennis elbow, lower back strain, pulled groin, hamstring strain, runner’s knee, shin splints, ankle sprain, tendinitis, and foot pain.

    Treatment for a sports injury with acupuncture has two objectives:

    1. Reduce pain and inflammation of the injured area.

    There is evidence that acupuncture can aid healing and resolution of injuries, including reducing pain, increasing local micro-circulation and attracting white blood cells to the area (both of which speed the healing rate), and aid dispersal of swelling and bruising.

    2. Prevent further injuries and enhance athletic performance.

    The best way to approach a fitness program without causing injury is to avoid diving in. Instead, take it slow and get the joints and muscles you haven’t used in a while ready to be used again.

    If you suffer a setback in your fitness routine, acupuncture can help! Contact All and One Acupuncture in Portland for more information about treatment options. 

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  • Acupressure for Anxiety

    August, 20th 2014

    The transition from summer to fall can be a challenging time. Vacations end, schedules shift, the days get shorter (and gloomier), and it may get harder to juggle self-care with the extra demands of a busy life.  If you are feeling stressed and strapped for time, or need a little extra support dealing with change, these simple exercises can help reset your mental and physical state.

     

    Shoulder well (GB21)

    photo 1Location: Tops of the shoulders in the highest part of the upper trapezius muscle, between neck and end of shoulder (deltoid muscle) and between front and back of body.  Find the most tender spot on the top of the shoulder, and you are there.

    Function: Reduces neck and shoulder tension, helps emotionally ground scattered or racing thoughts, reduces irritability or anger, relieves harmful effects of stress.

    Acupressure: Sit or stand comfortably, and curl your fingers over the tops of your shoulders, pressing gently into the sore or tight areas. Slowly lift your head up as you inhale, and exhale as you gently bring your head toward your chest. Continue with long deep breaths for 1 minute

     

    Yin tang

    ThirdEye 2 ThirdEye1Location: commonly referred to as the third eye point, this point is located between the eyebrows in a tender spot just above the bridge of the nose.

    Function: Calms the mind, relieves nervousness, balances emotions

    Lady 2Acupressure: bring your palms together, close your eyes, and gently press your index fingers to the area between your eyebrows while breathing deeply for 1 minute

     

    This point works well for your furry friends as well!

     

    Inner Pass or Inner Gate (Pc6)

    photo 2photo 3Location: On the inner wrist, this point is located about three finger widths up from the wrist crease in the middle of the inner arm.

    Function: Slows a racing heart, relieves anxiety and panic, balances the heart and mind, brings emotional and physical states back into alignment.

    Acupressure: Press your thumb into the tender inner wrist area three finger widths above the wrist crease. Hold for 30-45 seconds while focusing your attention on slow deep breathing.  Switch sides and hold the opposite side for an additional 30-45 seconds, continuing the deep breaths.

     

    Sea of Tranquility (CV17)

    SeaOfTranq Location: Middle of the sternum four ribs down from the throat, about level between or above the nipples

    Function:  Relieve tension, anxiety, depression, panic, and chest tightness.

    Acupressure: place your palms together as if praying, and press your thumbs firmly into your breastbone at the level of your heart. Close your eyes and concentrate on slow even breaths, allowing your heart rate to slow.  Continue this practice for two-three minutes.

     

    If you or someone you love suffers from anxiety, call All and One Acupuncture in Portland to learn how acupuncture can help. 

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  • Managing Back to School Stress and Anxiety Part I

    August, 19th 2014

    Stress and anxiety, which we usually associate with dangerous or unpleasant situations, also typically escalate when things are changing – even if the changes are positive. Any major transition in the context of life – a new job, a move, a change in relationship or any big change in routine – generates adjustment stress for adults, children and families.

    KIDS AND ANXIETY

    Children heading back to school after summer vacation may feel anxious about interactions with a new teacher and peers, new rules and expectations and/or separation from caregivers. Adjustment stress in children often shows up in regressive behavior. Anxious children may claim to feel sick to avoid going to school.

    Parents can help kids with adjustment stress by taking care to:

    1. Create consistent routines. Consistency and structure can help kids feel BackToSchoolgrounded. Take care to establish regular morning, after school and bedtime routines.
    2. Talk to your child. Ask open ended questions about your child’s experience at school. Paraphrase what your child tells you so that your child knows you understood.
    3. Use role play to help your child deal with challenging situations at school. Resist the temptation to rescue your child from all anxiety-provoking situations because this tends to reinforce worry. Use role play techniques to teach your child skills to manage challenging interactions. Ask your child to take the role of the person he is having difficulty with while you take the role of your child. This is a good technique for teaching your child communication and boundary setting skills that help build self-esteem and reduce anxiety.
    4. Establish clear guidelines about missing school. Talk with your child before school starts about your expectations for school attendance and when not feeling well justifies staying home. Consider using behavioral incentives to encourage cooperative attendance.GettyImages_78456013
    5. Use positive reinforcement. Look for opportunities to validate and notice desired behavior.
    6. Seek help if needed. Child psychotherapy and pediatric acupuncture are complimentary ways of addressing anxiety symptoms in children.
    7. Use coping skills to contain your own anxiety. Anxiety in families is “contagious.” Transitions are stressful for parents, too. It’s hard for an anxious parent to contain a child’s anxiety. Parent-child psychotherapy can be helpful in reducing anxiety in your family system.

     

    Read Part II – Managing Back to School Stress for Adults

     

    To schedule an appointment with Maggie Bortz please call 503-730-9509

     

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  • Managing Back to School Stress and Anxiety Part II

    August, 19th 2014

    To Read Part I Click Here

    Stress and anxiety, which we usually associate with dangerous or unpleasant situations, also typically escalate when things are changing – even if the changes are positive. Any major transition in the context of life – a new job, a move, a change in relationship or any big change in routine – generates adjustment stress for adults, children and families.

    ADULT ANXIETY

    Although some stress and anxiety is unavoidable, it is important to keep in mind that cognitive and neurological feedback loops tend to escalate and perpetuate worry and low grade fear. These approaches are often helpful in preventing adult anxiety from escalating.

    1. Positive self-talk. istock_helpAnxiety is usually future oriented and characterized by a thought process known as “catastrophizing,” which makes us believe things are worse than they really are. “If this unwanted outcome occurs, a host of other bad outcomes will follow. Things are bad now, but they will only get worse.” When you feel anxious, check to see what you are telling yourself. Replace negative, fear based self-talk with positive, reassuring self-talk. “I will be able to deal with this, even if I’m not exactly sure how.”
    2. Breathe. Anxious people tend to breathe shallowly from their upper chests. The respiratory system sends a “danger” signal to the brain and typically, anxiety escalates in this negative feedback loop. You can break this cycle with a few slow, deep belly breaths as soon as you begin to feel stressed.
    3. Strengthen interpersonal boundaries. Sometimes people have difficulty saying “no” to unreasonable requests from others. This is a common source of anxiety, especially for women. Psychotherapy can be helpful resource for learning to set and enforce healthy boundaries with others.
    4. Acupuncture. Acupuncture, acupressure and relaxation techniques can be highly effective tools in managing stress and anxiety.
    5. Psychotherapy. Many people enter therapy to learn skills to manage anxiety. Sometimes wounds from the past reverberate in the present in the form of anxiety, emotional pain, confusion or unsatisfying patterns of relationships. Sometimes the psychological defenses that helped us survive earlier in life have outlived their usefulness and create suffering in the present but we are unaware of it because the connection is buried deep in our unconscious. Becoming conscious of the root issues causing the problems allows real and lasting transformation to take place.

     

    To schedule an appointment with Maggie Bortz please call 503-730-9509

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  • Acupuncture to Enhance Athletic Performance

    August, 19th 2014

    Studies have shown that acupuncture has measurable effects on the flow of blood to certain areas of the body, which could in turn boost athletic performance. One such study conducted at the Beijing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine involved athletes running 5,000 meters, and afterwards sitting for acupuncture treatments before they had a chance to catch their breath. The heart rates of the athletes who received the treatments recovered more quickly than those in the control group.

    Another study published in the American Journal of Acupuncture measured the effects of acupuncture on anaerobic threshold and work capacity during exercise in healthy young males. Researchers found that individuals in the acupuncture treatment group had higher maximal exercise capacity and were able to perform higher workloads at the onset of blood lactate accumulation (OBLA) than individuals in the placebo group. The individuals that received acupuncture also had lower heart rates.

    Acupuncture can increase exercise capacity, according to researchers from the University of California. Study subjects biking on a test ramp were able to work harder after receiving an acupuncture treatment. Their systolic blood pressure also declined, indicating more efficient blood circulation.

    Are you looking for your next “runner’s high”? Scientists from the Neuroscience Research Institute in Chinafound that acupuncture stimulates the release of endorphins, which can reduce the sensation of pain. Instead of trying to exercise and get fit with a philosophy of “no pain, no gain,” you may be able to use acupuncture to experience less pain while you pursue your fitness goals.

    Ready to get started with acupuncture? Call All and One Acupuncture in Northeast Portland today for your free consultation.  

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  • Acupuncture for Increased Sports Performance and Injury Rehabilitation

    August, 12th 2014

    When a top athlete like Kobe Bryant tweets a picture of acupuncture needles in his leg, you know it’s time to consider how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can help improve your sports performance. All athletes and coaches are involved in an ongoing search for ways to improve performance and gain a competitive edge over their rivals. Many are finding that acupuncture can often provide that edge.

    From moving more fluidly to recovering from an injury, acupuncture and Oriental medicine can help you to stay active, boost your fitness level, and recover more quickly. By following the principles of Oriental medicine, an acupuncture treatment can strengthen body function and restore internal harmony and balance. Professional sports teams and top athletes often have an acupuncturist on staff to treat injuries and keep them performing at their peak.

    Practitioners of acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help athletes, even the amateur “weekend warrior,” in many ways. In addition to acupuncture, tight, stiff muscles may be helped by manual techniques such as cupping, a suction-based massage, and Gua Sha, a Chinese form of friction massage. In 2011, researchers at the University of Duisburg-Essen found that Gua Sha was effective at treating chronic pain and muscle stiffness in the lower back. In India, researchers from Majeedia Hospital found cupping helped to reduce pain, inflammation, and muscle stiffness in patients diagnosed with knee osteoarthritis. Cupping also improved blood supply to the area and simulated light exercise, leading to increased muscle flexibility in the region, researchers explained.

    Some of the best Olympic athletes incorporate acupuncture into their wellness programs. China’s 7 foot 6 inch basketball center, Yao Ming, used acupuncture and Chinese medicine to help him recover after undergoing surgery on his ankle. Chinese swimmer, Wang Qun, was photographed doing some last minute training in Beijing with round marks on her back from cupping.

    Call All and One Acupuncture in northeast Portland today to see how acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help you meet your fitness goals and assist in recovering from an injury.

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  • Breathing Exercise for Sleep

    June, 29th 2014

    This breathing exercise is also called the Shabd Kriya, which I’ve learned from my studies in Kundalini yoga.  It is a gentle yet effective exercise to help regulate sleep, and it is appropriate for most forms of insomnia.

    To begin, sit comfortably in a quiet place at bedtime. Close your eyes and place hands palms up in your lap, with your thumb tips touching. Shabd Kriya hand position All of the breathing is done through the nose.

    Inhale in 4 equal parts. Mentally vibrate SA TA NA MA with the four parts of the inhale breath.

    Hold the breath and mentally repeat 4 repetitions of SA TA NA MA. This will be 16 counts

    SA TA NA MA

    SA TA NA MA

    SA TA NA MA

    SA TA NA MA

    Then exhale in 2 equal strokes, mentally projecting WAHEY GURU.

    Continue the breathing for a minimum of 11 minutes nightly. Set a timer on your phone, and stay with the exercise as best you are able. This can be built up from 11 minutes to 15 to 30 minutes nightly to address insomnia and to help improve the quality of your sleep. Practice this exercise nightly for 40 days to adjust your sleeping patterns.

     

    Portland acupuncturist Boynn McIntire uses acupuncture, herbs, dietary therapy, stretches, and breathing exercises to help regulate sleep. If you suffer from insomnia, contact All and One Acupuncture in Northeast Portland to learn how we can help!

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  • Battling Insomnia: Tips for Better Sleep

    June, 27th 2014

    Ahhh, summer — your days are warm, school is out, and suddenly everyone is busy with travel, camp, outdoor activities, and social gatherings. With the change in light and possibly your family schedule, you or someone in your family may find that your sleep cycle is thrown off.  To battle insomnia or restless sleep, follow these simple self-care tips:

    • Sleep in a dark, cool room. If your room gets a lot of natural light, install black-out shades or drapes. Use a fan or air conditioning unit to keep the room under 65 degrees.
    • Follow a consistent sleep schedule, going to bed and getting up within the same 30 minute window daily.
    • Incorporate a pre-bedtime ritual of behaviors that encourage relaxation before you get into bed. This can include simple behaviors such as listening to soothing music as you brush your teeth, a cup of chamomile or sleepytime tea, or a bath or shower before bed. Your body will begin to associate these routines with rest and follow the same routine nightly.
    • Shut off your electronic devices, including television, iPads, phones, and computers at least 60 minutes (and preferably more) before bed.
    • Limit or eliminate alcohol, sugar, and caffeine.
    • Use your bedroom for sleeping and lovemaking, and nothing else.
    • If you like to take a siesta, keep your naps to 20 minutes or less.
    • Exercise during the morning or daytime rather than the evening.
    • Eat dinner early, giving your body 2-3 hours to digest your meals before turning in for the night.

     If you or someone you know suffers from insomnia, acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help. All and One acupuncture in Northeast Portland can provide you with tools to improve your sleep.  

     

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