November 14th, 2013 // No Comments
Why is it so difficult to get hubby to get a check up, treat a medical issue, seek treatment for stress or mental health? What is it about men that cause them to blatantly ignore dire health warning like hypertension, and keep on keeping on? Why would any sane human insist on laying down some hardwood flooring in the middle of a major sciatica crisis where they can barely walk? Welcome to the world of the warrior.
I raise my hand. I’m guilty. If you’re the women of your household, by now you have probably realized that it is up to you to nudge your family to take care of themselves. Hubby would be happy to never see another doctor ever again. The kids of course do not know better, but we men do.
Long before I studied acupuncture in San Diego I was a student of Anthropology. The other night I was watching great film called “Warriors’ of the Rainbow,” about the Native Taiwanese aborigines’. It got me thinking that the role men played way back when we were subsistence hunters is still genetically hard wired into us. It obviously kept us around for so long because it worked. But does it work well for us now, in a world where we don’t need to constantly put ourselves at great risk, and hope to be around to see our grandchildren?
To some degree it still exists because it because of society in some core ways hasn’t changed much. Engaging in high risk, or dangerous activities can confer a level of status. In other words, it can really pay off in gaining prestige, mates and wealth.
Most men have an “ I can handle this” mentality about their health. If it’s not killing them, they can deal with it. This make perfect sense because for thousands of years men have had to slug it out with nature, predators and worse of all aggressive males of their own species. Showing weakness, or inability to protect the tribe/family was not an option.
The hunter/warrior mentality is still well and strong under a veneer of civilization. At least in this country, we are satisfied to see it play out between rival sports teams, in the ring, or the corporate board rooms. But on an individual level it plays out in daily life.
Men statistically are more likely to turn to alcohol and drugs to suppress stress or pain, then to admit to it and seek treatment. Perhaps the reason for this is that admitting weakness is inviting a rival to exploit it. We surely see this play out in our political system, where any little weakness or error is pounced on by the rival party. I would venture to say that politics have been with us since the beginning.
What this whole discussion means for us providers is that men often don’t seek the care they need, and even when a problem is identified, they will often not make the time to treat it. For family members, it means that “dropping hints” may not be enough to get a guy in to see the doctor. In my fertility practice, it is very common to be treating women, whose partners are the main cause of the infertile. It is very difficult pill to swallow for a man to admit he is the cause. And even though a semen analysis is a very simple test, it often takes a lot of arm twisting to get a guy to take even that step.
I hope this article helps shed some light upon why it it can be so difficult to get men in the door, and why women can have such a hard time getting their men to take steps to treat health issues. But, hopefully all that well meaning “pushing and nudging” will help keep us around a lot longer.
Eric Hollander, L.Ac. is a licensed acupuncturist practicing in San Diego California. He can be reached at 619-817-6447 www.acupuncturesandiego.org.
Tags: Acupuncture · Male Fertility · Men's Health · Wellness
October 7th, 2013 // 2 Comments
If your like a lot of people who see me at my San Diego office, you are seeking acupuncture to assist with the success of your IVF cyle. Perhaps you just heard about fertility acupuncture, and are wondering if it is too late at this point, or it can still help. Here is how acupuncture can benefit you:
Fortunately. acupuncture can help at a number of points during and IVF Cycle. Ideally I like to see patients about 3 months before their IVF. This gives me about 3 natural cycles to work though, to prepare their body before they go the series of medicines that are used for IVF. This also gives us a chance to see how the patient responds to acupuncture and herbs. A number of people have gotten pregnant at this point. If the male partner is also seeking treatment, this also gives us the right amount of time to improve the semen quality. Three months of preparation is also the preferred way to go if there are egg quality issues (diminished ovarian reserve, poor responder), since time is need to improve the follicles as they go through their one year journey to ovulation.
Many patients find out last minute about acupuncture, right before the main IVF medications are given. They are often times starting the IVF the very next week. Acupuncture can help here as well. At this stage, our effort is to improve the ovarian response to the stimulation hormones, and diminish the harmful effects of stress on the whole procedure.
Still other people seek out acupuncture for just before and after the embryo transfer. Acupuncture has been shown in various studies to improve pregnancy rates of the IVF procedure. The mechanism of this is believed to be improved uterine blood flow, as well as reducing the possibility of the uterine spasms after the embryo is transferred.
Some recent research suggests that acupuncture improves the success rate of IVF because it can help normalize hormonal balance quickly, allowing the embryo to implant, and grow in a more normal environment. This makes sense considering the long sequence of hormones used in common IVF procedure.
Most women will feel normal more quickly after receiving acupuncture throughout the entire process of an IVF treatment. That is why acupuncture is being widely used in conjunction with IVF, here in San Diego, and elsewhere including many other countries. If you are considering going though IVF or are about to begin one, call my office today for a consult about whether including acupuncture s right for you.
Eric Hollander, L.Ac.
Tags: Acupuncture · Fertility · IVF · San Diego Acupuncture
September 5th, 2013 // No Comments
While not ideal for acute situations, such as sudden back pain, or for a new patient, a monthly, routine acupuncture treatment has a myriad of health benefits. I have a number of patients who come in to my San Diego Clinic for monthly treatments for many years now. Why is monthly acupuncture so beneficial?
After seeing a patient on a weekly basis, and resolving a health issue, moving to a monthly routine, instead of dropping out of treatment completely, helps to continue consolidating the treatment results for the long term. It allows me to catch up with the patient, and learn about all the new life stresses that may affect them, like new family members, weddings, and new jobs. This helps me treat all the smaller issues, that would else wise not be addressed, until perhaps they turn into big issues. It’s fantastic for stress management, stimulating the immune system, and helping the body adapt to abrupt changes in weather and the seasons.
If nothing is obvious, I look at the tongue and feel the pulse for clues to any imbalances that may exist, and not be readily felt.
Best of all I get to see old patients who have become friends though out the years, and marvel how another month has flown by!
So, if you looking for a low key, low cost way to manage stress, and take some proactive care of yourself, you may want to contact our San Diego office to add the power of acupuncture to your monthly schedule.
Tags: Acupuncture · San Diego Acupuncture · Stress · Wellness
October 16th, 2012 // 1 Comment
Stress is epidemic in modern society. It is the root of a host of disorders from irritable bowl syndrome, insomnia to hypertension and many more. In my San Diego Acupuncture office I see stress playing a major complicating factor in everything from fertility to pain issues. Here are some of the ways acupuncture can help:
- Stress mobilizes the fight or flight response. This response is triggered by our sympathetic nervous system. Think of this as a switch board with too many switches flipped on. As stress mounts day after day, our switches are staying open, and over-stimulating many areas of our bodies continuously. This mounts toll on many areas of our health, such as our immune system.
- The Types of stress we face in the modern world usually doesn’t involve fighting or running away. Normally, when we are able to run away, our switch can flip closed and we can recover. However, in our modern lives we cant really run away from our jobs, our relatives, our marriages, or our financial problems. Well, we may be able to, but often we stay stuck in these issues for many months, or years until we are forced to change when the toll on our health becomes unbearable.
- Acupuncture can help close down those switches, switching on the parasympathetic nervous system. This serves as the “off switch” turning off many unnecessarily excited nerve signals. It can also promote a detox effect, that can help rid the body off all the chemical residues of the long term over-stimulation.
Insomnia is often the result of an over excited, over stimulated nervous system. The part of our mind responsible for trying to solve our everyday problems refuses to shut off. This is made worse by all the “productive things” we do before bed, that only serve to create more worries and problems for our minds to figure out. Acupuncture does the exact opposite for many patients.
When acupuncture is performed, it creates a deep level of relaxation, that goes beyond what you can achieve when just laying down. By keeping the body still, you help still the mind. I find time and time again, that at least half my patients will fall asleep during acupuncture, or enter a deeply relaxed state where they are not sure if they had slept, or for how long.
Patients who receive acupuncture on a weekly basis, and then stop for a period, often remark to me that they notice how much better they slept when they were getting regular acupuncture. And acupuncture will often produce this effect for free, even when treat unrelated issues.
If your serious about reducing your stress, and curing your insomnia without depending on drugs, then you may want to contact our San Diego office to see if acupuncture can help you.
Tags: Acupuncture · Insomnia · San Diego Acupuncture · Stress
September 27th, 2012 // 2 Comments
The patients of my San Diego acupuncture clinic who are seeking treatment for fertility problems often ask me “what can I change about my diet that can improve my chances to successfully become pregnant?”
I want to share three major tips Traditional Chinese Medicine has to offer women trying to conceive. And yes, men can benfit from these as well.
- Consume warm foods, and warm drinks. Put your hand on your lower belly, around your naval and below. Does the skin feel cool, or cold to the touch? How about your feet? Are they cold all the time? Do you wear socks to bed? Even in warm, sunny, San Diego I have many patients coming in for acupuncture with a lot of cold issues. The digestive system affects the uterus, and the uterus need to be warm to sustain a healthy pregnancy. Pass on the ice water, chilled foods and large salads. Warm foods up and drink water at room temperature. Steam and wok you veggies instead of always going raw. Raw foods have their place, but it is often not the best for fertility.
- Have you had a bowel movement today? When things are stuck and not moving downward when they should, other processes related to our health may be stuck as well, including fertility. From an energetic standpoint the stuck movement of energy is bad for our bodies. Poor intestinal motility can also relate to issues of moisture and absorption. Since the colon sits right next to your ovaries, we really want to move toxins away, and keep them from building up. So, try to increase the water soluble fiber in your diet (such as brown rice an oat meal) and increase the vegetable content. Reduce excess starchy foods and red meat. Yogurt and probiotics may also be helpful to get your GI tract back on track.
- Do you always feel congested? Do your sinuses bother you or, do you have post nasal drip, and constantly have to clear your throat? Phlegm and fluid congestion can cause fertility issues. Especially in the tiny fallopian tubes that the fertilized egg must pass through. Phlegm and congested fluids can “gunk up” you internal machinery, and create a cold, sticky, internal environment. Some of the best ways to improve this is to cut back on the dairy, especially cheeses. Drinking large amounts of milk and consuming ice-cream will also contribute to phlegm. Other culprits are refined wheat products, and foods containing refined sugars. Try a few slices of avocado on your sandwich next time instead of cheese. Try Rice Dream, or any number of tasty milk substitutes out there instead of filling up a glass of milk. Replace white flour products with whole grain, whole wheat pastas, and breads. You should see an improvement in the annoying throat clearing in a jiffy.
In my San Diego clinic I look out for all these issues and more. I’ll often use acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and dietary supplements together to get results quicker. These fertility dietary tips are important whether you are trying to conceive naturally on your own, or going through western medial assisted reproductive techniques (ART). If you want a personal evaluation, and are interested in exploring the acupuncture way toward fertility, please give our office a call today
Tags: Acupuncture · Chinese Herbs · Fertility · Male Fertility · San Diego Acupuncture
September 2nd, 2012 // 1 Comment
As a follow up to an older post about tennis elbow, another recent patient of mine came in to my San Diego Acupuncture clinic with his wife for fertility boosting prior to an IVF cycle. In the process, I first helped get rid of his nagging, golf-related upper back pain. We then focused a few teratments on his golfer’s elbow (inner elbow pain). All the while, his wife lay on the next table preparing for her IVF.
He was playing rounds of golf, pain free, all about the same time his wife became sucessfully pregnant! I thought it was great that he was coming in with his wife, and being really supportive about what she was going through, yet reaping some really immediate benefits of acupuncture in the process.
Remember that not only golf players who suffer from golfer’s elbow. People who engage in repetitive, lifting or pulling motion can develop it too. If you have what you think is tennis elbow, and it’s interfering with your life, you may want to consider acupuncture. Give our San Diego office a call to set up an evaluation.
Tags: Acupuncture · Athletic Performance · Fertility · Golfer's Elbow · Male Fertility · Pain · Uncategorized
December 27th, 2009 // 1 Comment
We are now offering facial rejuvenation acupuncture treatments at our San Diego office. My associate Heidi Brockmyre L.Ac. is a Chinese herbalist and acupuncturist specializing in facial rejuvenation. She is a co-founder of Forever Young Aculift Skin Care System™. With the help of two experienced estheticians, she developed products that combine a wonderful blend of deep skin conditioning oils, skin repairing and protective anti-oxidants, and essential oils with ancient Chinese medicinal herbs. To obtain the maximum therapeutic effect, these products are best used in conjunction with a series of weekly acupuncture treatments as recommended by Heidi.
To learn more and see a Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture Video please click the link.
Tags: Acupuncture · Chinese Herbs · Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture
December 8th, 2009 // 1 Comment
I would like to introduce our new massage therapist Adria Ross. She is actually more then a massage therapist. She is an HHP (Holistic Health Practitioner). That’s a lot more training then just a massage therapist.
Adria has been trained in a wide variety of modalities from Deep Tissue to Reiki, as well as Fertility Massage. She also does hot stone massage, which is just incredible. I have personally had several incredible sessions with her, and always look forward to the next one. If you would like to find out more about her background, training and methods, check her out here.
If you would like a massage please call our office for an appointment. There is a special rate for your first session.
Tags: Back Pain Solutions · Massage · Pain
There has been a number of stories about acupuncture being used by Olympic athletes. Indeed for the first time acupuncture is being offered at Olympic Village.
Tony Smith, the Canadian Gymnastics Team coast decided to try it for chronic lower back pain, after nothing else she had tried helped, and was “amazed” at the results. She is now recommending it to her athletes. Read more about it here.
In this short video interview Olympic gold, silver and bronze medalist in swimming Daniel Kowalski discusses his use of acupuncture to recover from injuries and general health maintenance.
Another interesting acupuncture story is about a 60 year old acupuncturist named Wei, from Guangxi province, who set out to demonstrate his patriotism, and break a worlds record by inserting 2008 decorative acupuncture needles in his head face and chest. The previous record, according to the article, was 1790 set in 2004. That’s pretty amazing considering the human body has only about 350 main points, not including some of the micro-systems used on the hands and ears!
Tags: Acupuncture · Athletic Performance · Back Pain Solutions · Pain
August 16th, 2008 // 2 Comments
So what exactly is in those little needles that I stick into people? This is actually a really common question patients ask me. People want to know what can be making them feel so relaxed, or be making their pain go away.
Well there is no medicine, or even herbs in, or on an acupuncture needle. In fact, the needles we use are so skinny it would be impossible to give an injection with them. Modern acupuncture needles are super thin flexible, solid pieces of stainless steel with a small metal, or plastic handle that allows manipulation. They bear no resemblance to a sewing needle and are a great deal thinner.
The medicine really come from within the patient. Studies have shown that needling certain points cause the release of the bodies natural opiates. Some within the field of Chinese Medicine feel that the energy referred to as “qi,” is electrical in nature, and that the highly conductive metal of the acupuncture needle helps this qi to circulate.
So what role does the doctor play in all this? I like to think that the acupuncture needle serves as the meeting point between the energy of the healer, and that of the patient. When this is in balance, who needs a drug substance?
If you have more questions on acupuncture, perhaps they can be answered here.
Tags: Acupuncture · Pain · Safety · Treatment Results