Andrea asked such a good question it’s become a whole post. She asked how many sessions of acupuncture I would guess it would take to cure allergies. I am not really qualified to answer it, only to tell my own thoughts and experience.
I think it is an important question because a lot of people are deterred by the cost of acupuncture. For me, it was well worth it, and I will willing to cut back other areas to do it. There are free clinics and low cost days at many places, but from what I’ve heard from other people who have had success with acupuncture, the practitioner is the most important thing. There are bad acupuncturists just like there are bad doctors.
I started (I think?) in March 2005 and did not have allergies that spring. I went once a week, every week. Most of my other symptoms did not clear up quite that fast.
However, I don’t want to sound like acupuncture is magic, though I think that it requires more than memorizing points and meridians to be a good acupuncturist. Acupuncture is one tool (which was essential for me) in a large toolkit. My understanding is that many factors contribute to the imbalances that cause symptoms like allergies and, in my experience, it took many solutions.
The important thing for me was to realize that just because I always had allergies didn’t mean I had to have them forever. And also to realize that reaching for a pharma solution as a first resort sometimes aggravates the symptoms you want to relieve.
I want to advocate educating yourself and including your relationship to health in your process of healing. Seeking health when you haven’t had it is a radical act. Going to war with my symptoms by did not work for me. Finding the right tools for me changed my entire relationship to my body and to health as I had previously thought of it.
These issues remain complicated for me. Though I had many persistent and uncomfortable symptoms, I never had anything terminal or immediately life threatening. As I have watched my mother bravely battle cancer (there’s those war metaphors), I am still figuring out my understanding of healing and how we can live and thrive in a toxic world. So far, I am only sure that we can.
Thanks to Andrea (and Rand with the IM debate!) for inspiring this post.