Healthy Options: Healing at the point of acupuncture
Special to The Union
Like many young people, Renée Klorman spent her early 20s exploring career paths. As she explained, “My family lovingly refers to this era as my experimental period because of my eclectic resume.”
Some of the highlights: Journalist in Washington D.C., a master’s degree in women’s history, bike courier in New York City, medium format documentary photographer, dog walker, fish monger, and executive assistant to high profile CEOs — a stressful work environment that made her sick and ultimately led her to acupuncture and Chinese medicine.
After one session, Renée was hooked. She quit her job that week and entered a two-year medical massage therapy program, and then a four-year Chinese medicine program.
In 2006, she and her partner moved to California.
Her partner managed a farm and estate in Napa, and in Renee’s final year of school, they grew organic Chinese medicinal herbs.
Two years ago they moved to Nevada City and Renée opened Grass Valley Community Acupuncture, where she offers affordable healthcare, based on Chinese medicine, for the community.
Chinese medicine is a complete medical system that can be used to effectively treat a large variety of internal and external health concerns. It has been in continuous practice and development for millennia, and is extremely safe when practiced by fully trained and licensed practitioners.
In this week’s Healthy Options, we share a short interview with Renée Klorman, a licensed acupuncturist and Chinese medicinal herbalist.
Since beginning your practice, what are some of the transformations you have witnessed?
Early in my career, I treated a woman for post-surgical edema who had gained fifty pounds of water weight after a major surgery.
I administered three acupuncture treatments in 12 hours, and within 10 minutes of the third treatment she started to shed the water weight.
Within an hour of the third treatment she lost 10 pounds. Twenty-four hours later she shed nearly all of the post-surgical edema.
My first fertility case was a woman who had been trying to get pregnant for three years. She had tried Western drugs and procedures with no success. Within three acupuncture treatments she was pregnant.
Recently, I treated a woman who had a painful trigger finger that had been contracted for weeks. Twenty minutes into the treatment, teary-eyed, she held up her fully extended hand. Not only had her finger completely relaxed, but she was pain-free for the first time in months.
The most interesting cases for me are those involving chronic disease. Often chronic diseases are complicated because they have many twists and turns in how the disease expresses symptoms.
There is a lot Chinese medicine can offer someone living with a chronic health condition. These are the types of cases I thought about when I decided to add private room treatments to my schedule.
When would an individual appointment be better than receiving treatment in a group?
Community and private room acupuncture treatments have their unique strengths, and neither one is better than the other. I offer both because it creates the most flexibility for the patient as we move forward with the treatment plan.
Acupuncture works best with frequent and consistent treatments and community room acupuncture makes this affordable.
For many conditions, acupuncture is all that is needed. However, many people don’t realize that Chinese medicine incorporates more than acupuncture. Chinese medicine has five branches: acupuncture, Chinese medicinal herbs, nutrition, tui na (bodywork), and qigong (meditation).
In the community setting, acupuncture is the primary modality, but I also offer herbs and nutritional counseling. I also use palpation (touch) as a diagnostic tool.
In a private room session, I can take this many steps further and include bodywork, cupping, gua sha, herb compresses, heat lamps, direct moxa, and abdominal diagnosis, which is like pulse diagnosis.
How do acupuncture and herbs help people?
Chinese herbal therapy treats the imbalance underlying a patient’s symptoms. Each treatment is tailored to the individual and based on traditional diagnosis.
Chinese herbs are usually combined in formulas to enhance their individual properties and actions. Symptoms and signs are matched with therapeutic effects, reflecting the particular conditions and needs of each patient.
The understanding of how acupuncture works has evolved with its practice, but the descriptions set down a thousand years ago have largely been retained.
Essentially, Chinese medicine theory involves rectifying a disturbance in the flow of qi. If the qi circulation is corrected, the body can eliminate most symptoms and eventually — with proper diet, exercise, and other habits — overcome virtually all disease.
More information about Renée and her work is available online at http://www.grassvalleycommunityacupuncture.com/ or by calling 530-615-1888.
Jan Fishler is a local author and writing coach. She has recently published, Flex Your Writing Muscle: 365 Writing Prompts, available on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback. For more about Jan, go to http://www.janfishler.com.
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