So do you really want to hear the whole story? OK, here goes.
I attended an open house this past weekend for “Healing Point”, an accupuncture clinic in Fayetteville, NY. I wanted to learn more about accupuncture and how it works. I had attended a public forum at Crouse Hospital the previous week and Dr Yoo was one of the speakers. He operates the Healing Point clinic.
There were 8 to 10 other people in attendance. The presentation began and after a while, the Doctor asked us if we would like to experience accupuncture. Everyone was interested in trying, some a bit more reluctantly than others (count me in as one of the reluctant ones). I have had a phobia of injection needles for as long as I can remember. It is major trauma for me to get my annual flu shot. So to willingly submit to a guy offering to stick needles into my forehead, ear and hand seemed a bit far-fetched to me. But I did it anyway. Part of my rationale was that maybe it would help alleviate the anxiety I have towards needles (it didn’t). Or maybe that there would be some benefit that would be immediately noticeable (there wasn’t).
What I did experience was the sensation of tapping into the “Qi“, otherwise known as the energy flow in the body. I also learned that accupuncture needles are not the same type of needles that are used when you get an injection…they are not hollow. Accupuncture needles have a blunt, rather than sharp, pointy tip and are more like very thin wire than needles. And when they are placed, they are sort of spun and/or tapped in. It’s a very unique experience.
Dr Yoo explained before placing the needles into the web of skin between my thumb and forefinger, that the needle would let me experience the feeling of tapping into the “Qi”. He said I would definitely feel it and that really put me at ease. OF COURSE IT DIDN”T PUT ME AT EASE! I think I began to sweat. He explained that there would be a sensation and asked me to describe it when it happened. He then inserted the needle into the area between my thumb and forefinger. As he was doing so I really didn’t feel anything…no pain of the needle going in or anything. But all of a sudden there was an instant of total weirdness. It felt like for the briefest of moments there was a jolt of electricity in my hand running towards my fingers. It was there and then it was gone, as quick as that. It didn’t linger. Dr Yoo said that that was the “Qi”. He placed another needle in my other hand and the exact same sensation occurred. I can honestly say it was one the oddest sensations I’ve ever felt. Not pain, not uncomfortable but just… weird.
I am interested in Eastern medicine such as accupuncture because Western medicine is so focused on drug therapy and the treatment of symptoms instead of treatment of the cause. It seems responsible to investigate alternatives. After all, how long has Western medicine been around? 100 years or so? While Eastern medicine has been around for at least a thousand years? Seems like a no-brainer to me.