Acupuncture: “Sticking it” to Injuries

“Most people believe that acupuncture only offers pain relief…more importantly, acupuncture helps facilitate injury repair and wound healing by accessing energy pathways called meridians. The placement of the acupuncture needles on these pathways improves energy flow, which speeds healing.”

5 Ways Acupuncture Can Fix Your Health Problems

If you are struggling from any of these ailments, BCA can help you out with $20 treatments to get you better, faster!

Here Comes Change. Acupuncture Can Help!

When seasons change, acupuncture can help!
Our treatments are always $20 ($30 for the first visit).

Acu for Seasonal Allergies

By Mary Vincent L.Ac.
The most common type of allergies people seek treatment for at BCA are seasonal allergies, otherwise known as “hay fever”, which includes lots of sneezing, stuffy noses, and itchy eyes. This is especially true in the fall and spring, when tree, grass, and ragweed pollen are at their highest and surge with the warm, windy weather. If your allergies are predictable and occur at a certain time of the year, we suggest starting treatments just before the onset and continuing 1-2 times a week through the season. Many people find this helps keep their symptoms mild and easier to control. If you have a random mild to moderate allergy flare up, we suggest coming in for a few treatments in a row, which can help temper down your symptoms (including digestive issues related to a food allergy).
An allergic reaction occurs when the body’s immune system has developed a hypersensitivity to something in the environment that would not typically affect the majority of individuals. Allergens can be inhaled, ingested, or absorbed through contact with the skin. When a person comes in contact with something they are allergic to, the body produces a specific antibody known as IgE which binds the allergen and attaches them to mast cells. Mast cells are found throughout the body, but particularly in the intestines and airways. When IgE attaches the allergen to the mast cells, they begin to release histamine, the chemical responsible for the unpleasant physical symptoms of an allergic reaction.

The most common allergens include pollen, dust mites, mold, animal dander, foods, drugs, latex, and insect venom. Adverse reactions include:
* Sneezing
* Itchy, runny or stuffy nose
* Itchy, watery eyes
* Fatigue

Acupuncture for Breech Baby

By Mary Vincent L.Ac.

Breech baby occurs when the presentation of the fetus is buttocks or feet pointing first toward the mother’s pelvis. Between 29-32 weeks gestation, 15 percent of all babies will be in a breech position, but by the time the pregnancy reaches full term (37 weeks or later), only 3 percent of babies remain breech. This bottom-first presentation can lead to increased risks for the fetus and mother during vaginal birth, particularly umbilical cord prolapse and head entrapment, both of which can lead to oxygen deprivation and possible neurological damage or death of the fetus. Though vaginal birth is still possible, it is a controversial topic in midwifery and obstetrics.The risks involved are substantial enough that U.S. hospital policies do not allow for it, and the vast majority of obstetricians are no longer trained to safely perform these types of births.

A TCM treatment known as moxabustion (moxa) has been shown to be around 70 percent effective in turning a breech baby ( This technique includes using moxa sticks, which are cigar-shaped sticks comprised of tightly rolled mugwort leaves, burned close to the outside of the acupuncture point UB 67 (at the outside corners of the little toes). The heat on this point causes the baby to become restless in the uterus and increases the chances of it flipping into a head down position. Ideally, the best time to attempt to turn the baby with moxa is between 32 and 35 weeks. Once the baby is big enough to be snug in the womb the odds of turning are low, and if baby has already engaged into the pelvis it will not turn. Many women prefer to try and turn the baby [...]

Acupuncture for Menopause

by Mary Vincent, L.Ac.
At Beach Community Acupuncture we frequently treat symptoms related to menopause, as most women are affected with some level of discomfort during this transitional phase. Several recent studies have shown acupuncture to be a viable option, especially in the treatment of hot flashes (by far the most prominent symptom we treat in menopausal women). Depending on the severity of one’s symptoms, we typically recommend treatment 1-3 times week for 1-2 months to start. Some women require regular, follow up treatments to keep symptoms at bay, while others may only need an occasional treatment (or none at all if symptoms do not return).
Menopause occurs when a woman’s ovaries stop functioning due to age and is defined by the absence of menstruation for a full 12 months. It typically begins between the ages of 45 and 50, but can occur anywhere from 30 to 60. It is usually a gradual process, known as perimenopause, the length of which can be months to years. Menopause can also occur immediately after hysterectomy, or due to chemotherapy or radiation.
Symptoms and severity vary for woman to woman, most of which are due to declining estrogen levels. They can include:
▪ Irregular menstrual cycles: Ovulation becomes intermittent leading up to menopause, and most women will experience shorter or longer cycles during this transitional phase. When ovulation does not occur, progesterone will not be produced and estrogen levels may continue, causing a think buildup of uterine lining and a heavy flow for that cycle. As one gets close to true menopause, both progesterone and estrogen levels decline, causing less and less frequent periods with light flow. We often suggest herbs that help with heavy cycles.

▪ Hot [...]

Natural Relief for Sore Throat

by Mary Vincent, L.Ac.

Sore throats, otherwise known as pharyngitis, are caused by inflammation and swelling at the back of the throat (pharynx). Depending on the cause or severity of the sore throat, the tonsils and larynx may become painful and irritated as well. Other localized symptoms may include:

▪ dryness, scratchiness, itchiness in throat

▪ hoarse voice

▪ increased pain when swallowing

▪ swollen lymph nodes in neck

▪ white spots or patches on tonsils

Sore throats can be caused by a variety of reasons, though viral infections are by far the most common cause of acute cases. These types of infections are typically caused by adenovirus, some types of influenza, common colds, or Epstein-Barr virus (presenting as mononucleosis). Less common causes of viral sore throats include beginning stages of measles or herpes simplex virus.

Of all viral infections, adenovirus is the most likely to be responsible. The throat can become very painful with many swollen lymph nodes, and pronounced tonsillitis. This type of infection is often mistaken for or assumed to be strep throat, and can be impossible to diagnose without a throat culture. Many people tell of how they can call their MD and get a prescription for antibiotics over the phone for strep when they call in with the listed symptoms. I strongly discourage you from doing this without a confirmed diagnosis for strep. It is futile to take antibiotics for any viral infection, and frankly it’s unethical to be prescribed them without merit, as rampant overuse has and continues to give rise to dangerous strains of antibiotic resistant bacteria. There are minimal western antivirals at this time to help with sore throats due to viral infections.

Bacterial infections are caused by group A streptococcus (strep throat), pertussis (whooping [...]

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Acupuncture

by Nicole Murray, L.Ac.
At Beach Community Acupuncture, we frequently treat Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) with good results. Acupuncture stimulates release of endorphins, the body’s own natural painkillers. Aside from blocking pain signals, acupuncture is proven to lowers proteins associated with inflammation.
We encourage people to start treatment when signs first appear, for better results. A typical treatment plan is 2-3 times a week for a month to improve pain and inflammation, then weekly for several months for maintenance. At that point, people come when pain and swelling need to be addressed.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disorder. An autoimmune disorder occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys healthy body tissue by mistake.
RA affects the joints. It causes pain, swelling, and stiffness. In most cases, symptoms occur in the same joints on both sides of your body. This disease often occurs in more than one joint and can affect any joint in the body. People with this disease may feel sick and tired, and they sometimes get fevers.

Signs and symptoms include:
* Fatigue
* Joint pain
* Joint tenderness
* Joint swelling
* Joint redness
* Joint warmth
* Joint stiffness
* Loss of joint range of motion
* Many joints affected (polyarthritis)
* Limping
* Joint deformity
* Both sides of the body affected (symmetric)
* Morning stiffness that may last for hours
* Firm bumps of tissue under the skin on your arms (rheumatoid nodules)
Some people have mild or moderate forms of the disease with times when the symptoms get worse and times when they get better. Others have a severe form of the disease that can last for many years or a lifetime. This [...]

Peripheral Neuropathy and Acupuncture


by Mary Vincent, L.Ac.
Acupuncture can help decrease the severity and frequency of symptoms related to peripheral neuropathy, a common condition we treat often at Beach Community Acupuncture. Most people with peripheral neuropathy experience a variety of uncomfortable symptoms, often in the hands and feet. These include:
* numbness
* weakness
* tingling
* stinging
* burning, and
* pain that can range from chronically annoying to almost unbearable.
Here at BCA we typically suggest 10 treatments daily to start for severe or recent onset of neuropathy. For less severe or chronic, long term neuropathy we may recommend 2-3 times a week for the first month to start.
Studies show that acupuncture can not only significantly reduce symptoms and may also improve nerve conduction-keep readying to learn more.

The National Institute of Health estimates that various forms of peripheral neuropathy affect up to 20 million people in the United States. It is caused by damage to the peripheral nervous system, or PNS, which refers to all parts of the nervous system outside the brain and spinal cord. The PNS sends messages from the brain and spinal cord to the rest of the body. When damage occurs to these nerves, the messages become disrupted or improperly relayed.
Peripheral neuropathy can be an effect of a wide variety of underlying diseases, physical traumas, or exposure to certain toxins (medications or poisons). The most common causes of neuropathy include:
▪ Diabetes-the #1 cause of peripheral neuropathy in the United State. At least 60% of the people diagnosed with diabetes will develop neuropathy.
▪ Accidents, sports injuries, and surgeries
▪ Repetitive motions (work or sports related)
▪ Medications—particularly common with chemotherapy
▪ Autoimmune disorders—particularly rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Sjogren’s [...]

Acupuncture for Back Pain

By Nicole Murray, L.Ac.

About Back Pain

Back pain is one of the most common reasons people seek medical treatment. Eight out of 10 people have experienced some form of back pain in their lives according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. In a given three month period, 25% of adults in the US will experience back pain. We definitely see this here at Beach Community Acupuncture, where we treat back pain in some form at least 5-10 times every day.

Symptoms vary, depending upon the underlying cause. Pain may be dull or achy, sharp, burning or stabbing. There may be associated pain, weakness, tingling or numbness in the hips, legs or feet. Likewise, the pain may be mild- more an annoying sensation than anything- or it may be so severe that the person is unable to stand up, sit down, or make any movement without excruciating pain.

Back pain may be acute or chronic, and is treated differently depending upon the cause.

Acute back pain comes on suddenly, and is more quick to respond to treatment. On its own, acute back pain usually resolves in several days to a few weeks. This pain may be the result of trauma (e.g., a car accident, or a fall during sports). We commonly see sprains (overstretched ligaments in the back) and strains (torn muscles caused by a sudden force).

Chronic back pain persists longer than 3 months and may be due to arthritis or long-term wear and tear on the spine. Other possible causes include:

A herniated disc, which can push against the spinal nerves, often causing radiating pain (aka radiculopathy-sciatica is a good example of this);
Spinal stenosis (narrowing of the space between the spinal cord and [...]