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What is Moxibustion?


Moxibustion is a treatment which involves the application of heat to a specific area of the body.  Moxa has been utilized by Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM) practitioners for over 10,000 years; in fact, most TCM textbooks are entitled “Acupuncture and Moxibustion”, emphasizing the importance of moxa in the acupuncture treatment.  Moxibustion is often used in lieu of acupuncture, as it possesses the same ability to stimulate meridian points as acupuncture needles.  Thus, for those with a fear of needles, Moxibustion is a great alternative treatment.


Can’t I just use a heating pad?


Moxa does not just warm the superficial layer of the body (like a heating pad does).  Instead, moxa gradually penetrates to the deeper tissue, influencing internal organs and circulation.


Moxibustion feels extremely relaxing for patients.  Patients often claim that, during the treatment, they feel heat deep inside the body, a movement of energy within them, and a feeling of calmness.


How is moxa administered?


Moxa can be administered in several different forms.  Indirect moxa can be performed by moving a moxa cigar along the body part to be treated, by placing a moxa cone on a slice of ginger or on a pillow of salt, or by placing a small moxa bud on top of an acupuncture needle.  Direct moxa refers to a single moxa, rolled into a cone the size of a grain of rice.  The rice cone is placed on the acupuncture point, which has previously been covered with burn cream.


What are the health benefits of Moxibustion?


By increasing blood supply to a local area, moxa clears blockages within the meridians, drives cold energies out of the body, and promotes a deeper relaxation of vessels and muscles, allowing the body’s natural healing mechanisms to flourish. Studies have shown that moxa can help:


  • activate immune function, by increasing white blood cell count and enhancing lymphocyte activity,

  • increase red blood cell count,

  • heal wounded tissue,

  • revive organs that have lost their capacity to function optimally,

  • lower blood pressure, reduce blood viscosity, and dilate various vessels, and

  • detoxify the body.


Moxibustion provides effective support for:


  • Chronic pain

  • Muscle tension, injuries, and blockages

  • Arthritis/rheumatism of muscles and joints

  • Carpal tunnel, tendonitis, nerve/joint inflammation, and repetitive strain injuries

  • Menstrual cramps, chronic pelvic inflammation, and menopause

  • Sinusitis and rhinitis

  • Digestive issues and low metabolism

  • Liver/spleen/pancreatic weakness and cleansing

  • Fertility

  • Heart weakness

  • Fatigue


Studies have also indicated that Moxibustion can assist with breech fetuses in pregnancy.  Currently, the international scientific community is studying the potential benefits of moxibustion in fighting cancer and HIV, as well as improving liver dysfunction.

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