acupuncture and asthma, allergic sinusitis, sinus headache

Acupuncture and Asthma

Have you ever considered treating your asthma with acupuncture? Asthma, allergy, wheezing and shortness of breath can be addressed with the help of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine. In modern day China, this style of individualized treatment is known as TCM, or traditional Chinese medicine.

Asthma is a syndrome of airway inflammation and constriction which affects the patient with cough, wheezing and shortness of breath. Both allergy and viral infections can trigger an asthmatic episode, as well as exposure to directly irritating substances such as smoke and cosmetic fragrances. Cold and exercise-induced asthma have also been described, as has asthma from exposure to salicylates in aspirin and artificial colors and flavors. Asthma and allergy symptoms are increasing in our society, and often require treatment with powerful drugs which can cause a variety of side effects.

Allergy to inhaled pollutants and pollen also contribute to asthmatic diseases. Most modern cities have problems with air quality outdoors, and indoor air is subject to pollution by furnishings, household chemicals, cosmetics and pet dander. Casual use of insecticides, pesticides and herbicides on lawns and food crops, as well as indoor exposures at work and at home, have also affected a number of my patients.

Symptoms of allergy and hypersensitivity may affect the body in the sinuses, the airways, the mucous membranes, the lungs or the skin. Some individuals develop problems in all of these areas. Sinus symptoms may include congestion, watery or sticky discharges, pain and pressure. Sinus inflammation can also trigger facial headaches as well as migraine headaches and vascular headaches.

The use of acupuncture and dietary therapy can be very helpful to reduce or eliminate the signs and symptoms of allergic and irritant asthma and sinus disease. Patients report that they can use fewer medications and feel better.

Acupuncture therapy and traditional herbal medicine prepared from different roots, barks, flowers, and fruits, are reasonable alternatives for people to evaluate when they suffer from complex physical disorders like asthma. It is not well known, but emotional stress can also be a factor in asthmatic episodes, and Oriental medicine can also address these issues.

Asthma often is worse at certain seasons and at certain times of day. As with many chronic imbalances, treatment may require an ongoing effort of the patient and physician. Because there are different forms of asthma and each person may have a different imbalance, developing the correct, individualized, approach also takes time. Traditional physicians have learned that the best medicine results from a strong relationship between doctor and patient, with each taking personal responsiblity for improving the patient's health.

Chinese medical theory suggests a close relationship between the lung and the skin: Many people with allergic symptoms that show up in the skin may also have disorders of lung or sinuses. As with many lung disorders, chronic skin problems such as rash, psoriasis, and eczema should be understood to be chronic and require ongoing treatment. In addition, there are categories of neurologic disorders where no disease is visible, but the patient still suffers from itching, burning, or areas of increased or decreased sensitivity. These and neuropathies that affect the skin may respond to acupuncture, whether or not they are associated with allergy or lung disorders.

Dr. L.B. Grotte, M.D., was the first physician in Ohio to be board certified in both acupuncture and Chinese herbology. He has studied Oriental medicine since 1972 and has practiced Oriental medicine in Cleveland since 1980. Our small practice specializes in creating individualized treatment plans combining Western and Oriental methods. Call us at 440-461-7488 or visit our website for more information.

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