Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine | Skin conditions

Acupuncture for skin conditions

The skin is the largest organ of the body. Issues of the skin such as acne, psoriasis, rosacea, eczema, flushing of the face are all due to internal disharmony within the body and this is where Chinese Medicine particularly the herbal medicine excels.

 

At Balanced Life Health Care we are experienced at treating all skin conditions including;

  • Acne
  • Adult onset acne
  • Eczema
  • Allergies
  • Hives
  • Unknown rashes
  • Rosacea
  • All kind of dermatitis
  • Psoriasis
  • Shingles
  • Ichthyosis vulgaris
  • Lichen Simplex
  • Tinea
  • Urticaria

For more information about particular skin conditions read on but for individualised skin treatment advice we suggested booking a consultation.

 

Acne & Adult onset acne

 

You are not stuck with “problem skin”!!! Your hormones can be re-balanced, your nutrition can be changed and your skin cells CAN completely replace themselves. You can change your skin if you nourish, support and heal the cells by taking care of your skin from the inside out! By taking Chinese herbs, eating nutrient dense foods, digesting them well, and creating a nourishing skin care routine will go a long way to clear skin. Healing inflammation inside and out is key.

 

Breakouts occur when the oil or sebum that normally drains to the surface of the skin blocks skin follicles. Sebum secretions increase with hormonal changes, especially around puberty, pregnancy, and menopause, and when sebum is blocked it allows bacteria and yeast to grow, causing the skin to become inflamed and eventually resulting in acne.

 

The severity of the infection defines the characteristics of the acne. Whiteheads are secretions trapped beneath the skin; blackheads are the sebum breaking through the skin, coloured black as a result of the body’s natural pigment deposits; and cystic acne is characterized by severe pus-filled infections under the skin, which can be painful.

 

From a Chinese Medicine perspective breakouts are caused by imbalances in the digestive or gynaecological system and sometimes even a mix of the two. So to treat Acne and ensure clear skin at Balanced Life Health Care we approach the skin holistically by combining Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine, nutritional supplements, nourishing skin care, and changing eating habits, all designed to reduce inflammation.

 

Eczema

 

Eczema is common in children but can also occur in adults. For most it is an itchy frustrating rash and incidents are becoming more and more common. By taking Chinese herbs, eliminating inflammatory foods, and working to heal the skin from the inside and out is key to long term results.

 

In most cases of dermatitis, rashes appear in the crooks of the elbows and knees, neck, hands and feet. Changes in skin color, inflammation, blisters (sometimes oozing, and then crusting over), inflammation and thickening (also known as lichenification) can occur.

 

At Balanced Life Health Care we know that regular treatment with Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine can reduce itching, scaling, redness, raised patches and decrease the frequency of flare-ups.

 

When a patient comes in for treatment of a skin condition, I tell them to expect to need 3 to 6 months of regular treatment with Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine. Without Herbal Medicine, treatment to resolve redness, itching and flaking will take longer. If a patient is unwilling to change his or her diet, a complete resolution in eczema symptoms is unlikely. After eczema symptoms are resolved I continue treatments for an additional 4 weeks or so, to consolidate the solution. This helps to ensure symptoms won’t recur.

 

Rosacea

 

Rosacea is an acne-like skin condition that causes chronic inflammation. Rosacea only affects the face, and is almost exclusively seen in adults. Rosacea symptoms include small, red, pus-filled bumps (pustules). Visible spider veins are also common. The areas of the face that are primarily affected are the nose, cheeks and chin.

 

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine treat rosacea by calming inflammation, reducing redness, and healing pustules.

 

Rosacea usually appears in stages:

 

  • Pre-rosacea, which appears as easy flushing or blushing and progresses to constant redness in the center of your face, essentially the nose and surrounding skin.
  • Vascular rosacea, which is a worsening of the symptoms marked by pronounced blood vessels on the nose and cheeks.
  • Inflammatory rosacea, which is marked by the appearance of small, red bumps (pustules). These bumps appear on the nose, cheeks, and chin. Sometimes bumps appear on the forehead too.

 

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine treat rosacea by cooling red, inflamed skin, clearing pustules and helping to reduce the appearance of blood vessels. I use Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine along with dietary therapy and lifestyle modifications to help treat rosacea.

 

Most treatment programs last 3 to 6 months. My ultimate goal is to reduce rosacea symptoms and keep you symptom free without further treatment. Some very stubborn cases may require an additional period of consolidating treatments to make sure rosacea symptoms don’t return. Each person is unique, and no timeline is set in stone. But the ultimate goal of any Acupuncturist should be to have you be able to walk out of the office one day and not need to come back.

 

Because each person is unique, I custom tailor Acupuncture treatments and Chinese Herbal Medicine formulas exactly to you. There’s no cookie cutter medicine in my clinic. Each person is unique, each set of symptoms is unique and each treatment is unique. I have completed additional studies in dermatology so I can be able to provide individualized treatments like these.

 

Psoriasis

 

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder of the skin, which means that the bodies own immune system is attacking it’s own cells. In psoriasis faulty signaling by the body’s immune system causes rapid turn-over of skin cells, which in turn causes the skin to appear silvery-white and form psoriasis plaques. There are five types of psoriasis: plaque, guttate, inverse, pustular and erythrodermic.

 

Plaques most commonly occur around the elbows and knees, but can affect any area of the body, including arm pits, back, buttocks and scalp. Psoriasis can be widespread and cause extreme self consciousness in suffers. Psoriasis plaques can occur in different size patches, from small areas to patches covering the entire body. The nails and joints may be affected, as in psoriatic nail dystrophy and psoriatic arthritis, respectively. Psoriatic arthritis occurs in approximately 3-10% of people with psoriasis.

 

Common treatments include external creams such as coal tar preparations, cortisone alcipotriol and other prescription creams. Internal treatments include medications such as methotrexate, neotigason, cyclosporin and calcipotriol which slow rate of cell growth. Sometimes ultraviolet light therapy is prescribed. All have risks and side effects, but also results are limited to while using either the creams or medications, simply because they do not address the cause which is immune based.

 

At Balanced Life Health Care our approach is an integrative approach to address the immune system as well as the psoriasis lesions. Regular treatment for 3 to 9 months will reduce the number and size of plaques, scales, redness, and other psoriasis symptoms. But you have to commit to treatment. If treatment is stopped before symptoms of have resolved, there will be a recurrence.

 

It is important to consolidate the treatment after the clearing treatment to ensure there will not be a recurrence. This consolidating treatment allows me to nourish the new skin back to health by restoring the normal blood flow and moisture. Some people choose to come in for seasonal tune-ups, too, but this isn’t necessary. My goal is to treat your psoriasis so you can get on with your life instead of having to come for treatments and take medicine for the rest of your life.