It's almost spring, and like most of you I'm more than ready for it to arrive. From a Chinese Medicine perspective this time of year is thought of as the transition from ultimate rest (winter) to ultimate activity (summer), and it can be a tricky season to navigate in regards to our health and sense of well being.
As we leave our hibernating ways behind, our energy is literally and figuratively moving up and out, like the plants in the ground that have been covered in snow. For that reason there are a lot of issues that show up at the exterior and top of the body during this time of year. During every spring season I expect to treat a lot of patients with muscle spasms/pulls (especially shoulders and neck), pain that seems to radiate and move throughout the body, itchy skin, dry eyes, dry throat, a feeling of a "lump" in the throat or chest, inability to swallow or draw a breath into their belly, stuffy + runny nose, headaches, vertigo/dizziness, and ringing in the ears. Many folks will also notice they are waking frequently (more likely between 11-3 am).
The good news is that these symptoms can be successfully treated with Acupuncture. Spring is a good time of year for you or someone you know who suffers from the above to book a "tune up" visit to the clinic. There are also 2 simple lifestyle changes to implement that will make your transition from winter to spring that much easier.
1) First cut down on the comfort foods we tend to crave all winter long. They leave you inflamed, constipated and take a lot of energy to digest, which is the exact opposite of what you want when spring finally comes. Include lots of ginger, garlic, cayenne, peppermint etc into your cooking. These foods all aid digestion and even promote sweating, making them highly effective at combating that sluggish, heavy feeling that accompanies the post winter thaw.
2) Get moving. The winter cold and associated stress makes our bodies tight and achy. Get your circulation going any way you can, stretching, walking, hiking.Start a gym membership, get a massage or a chiropractic adjustment (we know all 3 if you need a referral...) We're also rolling out cupping and gua sha here at the shop tin the next few weeks, both of which are phenomenal for resolving tension and tightness in the body. Look for a follow up blog post on the benefits and for stand alone soft tissue appointments to be added our online scheduler and in the coming weeks. Remember that a rolling stone gathers no moss, and a body in motion stays in motion! See you chair side.
William Boylan Lic.Ac
The Acupuncture Clinic of Bedford
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