When I tell people that Andrea Lane, LAc practices pediatric acupuncture on babies here at To The Point PDX, I get looks that can be best described as skeptical. Most people think that kids and needles don’t mix well. It can be a challenge to convince needle-averse adults to get acupuncture, how are babies and young children going to react? Short answer: very well. Check out Andrea’s latest blog on how acupuncture, East Asian Medicine and Chinese Medicine can help your child through some of childhood’s most annoying problems.
By: Andrea Lane
There are different approaches to providing East Asian medicine to children; some of them involve actual needle insertions, but many do not. With needle insertions, the “in and out” technique is usually used, where the needles are quickly inserted and then removed. A skilled practitioner can do this with little to no pain.
Another technique that is often applied is called shonishin. This is a Japanese term that translates to “little children needle”. The term ‘needle’ here is somewhat of a misnomer, because actually no insertive needles are used in shonishin. Instead, metal tools are used to stroke or tap on the skin. It’s a gentle approach that most children enjoy.
If you’re a parent, you’ve already been astounded by how quickly your littles transform and grow. From one day to the next, they can change dramatically. I know I’ve gotten my baby out of his crib in the morning and wondered if he was actually larger and longer than he was when I put him down the night before. Because of this plasticity, they respond quickly to any kind of treatment, even gentle, noninvasive treatments like shonishin.
So, what kinds of treatments does shonishin treat? To put it succinctly: pretty much anything.
The same way that acupuncture, East Asian medicine and Chinese Medicine can treat a wide variety of conditions in adults, it can also benefit littles with a host of issues.
Some commonly treated conditions include digestive issues, mood and behavioral problems (those terrible twos!), teething pain, sleep issues, the common cold, musculoskeletal imbalances, and even just for your child’s general wellness.
So, when can your child start acupuncture? As soon as they’re born! Pediatric treatments are used on children from birth to age 12 or 13, depending on the child. Your practitioner can also teach you how to apply treatments to your children at home to maintain the benefit of in-office treatment.
The same way that East Asian medicine can be a part of an integrative, holistic approach to healthcare in adults, it can also be used on babies and children - right here in Portland, OR. This can be a part of a practice that helps to set your child up for their best health throughout their lives.
If you have further questions, please - send me an email at email@example.com. You can always schedule online.
Andrea Lane is a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist, certified Pilates instructor, and GYROTONIC® trainer in Portland, Oregon. Her practice particularly focuses on using gentle, Japanese acupuncture techniques and classical Chinese herbalism for the whole family. She is passionate about maintaining good health through a whole-food diet, mindful movement, and meditation. When she is not practicing, she loves to cook, listen to podcasts, chase her baby around, and cater to her cats’ every whim.