Off all the self-fulfilling prophesies in our culture, the assumption that aging means decline and poor health is probably the deadliest.

Marilyn Ferguson  (1938-2008)

American writer and public speaker


Acupuncture: More than Just Needles (Part II)

What is It?

Acupuncture is a method of treating the body in order to balance the energy (Qi) we have within us.  This energy allows us to live our lives:  move, breathe, and digest our food.  If this energy becomes unbalanced, stagnant or depleted, then changes in our bodies occur.  In the West, we call these symptoms of disease.  The focus of acupuncture is to restore balance to the body, reduce the symptoms of imbalance and the symptoms of disease.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), energy travels through the body in channels.  There are specific points on each channel where the energy is more easily accessed.  These points are called “acupuncture points”.  There are over 450 acupuncture points on the body with many located in the abdomen, along the spine, on the head, hands and feet.  Most acupuncture treatment is done by inserting thin needles into these points and stimulating the needles to correct energy imbalances and stagnation.  As the energy imbalances are corrected patient symptoms and reduced.  However, not all TCM treatments are done with needles; other adjunctive therapies can be used.  One of the most common is “cupping therapy”  Cupping has been around for thousands of years and is common throughout the world although not in the United States.  Although cups have been made from bamboo, animal horn, or stones , modern cupping methods allow the acupuncturists to use cups made from silicone or plastic or glass.  The purpose of cupping is the use of negative pressure or suction to lift tissue, increase the movement of blood and lymph and to move stagnant Qi.

How Will Acupuncture Help Me?

Balancing the energy (Qi) in the body is useful in treating a number of conditions, both acute and chronic.  The following is a partial listing of conditions that can be treated with acupuncture and cupping therapy:

–  sprains and strains

–  sore muscles

–  stiff and sore joints such as shoulders and knees

–  digestive problems such as gas, bloating, reflux, belching, diarrhea and constipation

–  lung problems such as asthma, allergies, weak immune systems, cough, congestion

–  anxiety and worry

–  depression

–  stress

–  lack of energy

What Happens During an Acupuncture Appointment?

During the initial appointment, a focused examination is conducted.  You will be told what the results of the examination are, what treatment(s) are appropriate and how many treatments are likely to be needed.

During the treatment, the areas to be treated are cleaned with alcohol.  Sterile single use thin needles are then inserted into the appropriate acupuncture points.  Needles are usually left in for 15-20 minutes depending on the patient and the condition being treated.  Used needles are disposed of as medical waste.  If cupping therapy is done, a lotion or cream is put on the skin to increase the adherence of the cups.  Cups can be placed on acupuncture points or tender points.  Cups can be left in one spot or moved over the skin to treat larger areas.  Cups are usually left on for 5-15 minutes.  After cupping therapy, patients may notice a discoloration on the skin where the cups were placed.  These discolorations may look like bruises but are not.  The discolorations are toxins, stagnation, cellular debris and pathogenic factors that are being drawn to the surface by the cups to cleared away by the circulatory system.  These discolorations with fade and may take up to 2 weeks to fade completely.

How Will I Feel After an Acupuncture or Cupping Treatment?

Depending on the reason for the treatment, most patients enjoy a sense of greater ease in movement, a sense of relaxation and notice a decrease in symptoms over the next several days.  It’s important to drink plenty of water after treatment and to treat yourself gently for the rest of the day.

Where Can I get Acupuncture and Cupping?

Dr. Carol S. Weeks, DC, MS of Family Chiropractic Center in Rocky Hill, CT offers both acupuncture and cupping therapy at her office.  If you’re not sure if acupuncture or cupping therapy is right for you, Dr. Weeks offers consultations during office hours.

To schedule an appointment or consultation:

phone:  860-882-1906


Acupuncture…it’s more than just needles (Part 1)

Many people are familiar with acupuncture (“that’s where they stick needles in you, right?) but there’s really a whole lot more to the process.  I’d like to spend this post explaining a little about acupuncture.  Later posts will expand on this topic.

Acupuncture is one of the oldest forms of medicine in the world, it is probably also the most commonly used.  Acupuncture needles have been found in Chinese tombs that date back to 1500 BC.  The type of materials used for needles (stone, bamboo, metal) have changed through the years as have many of the theories behind acupuncture.  However, acupuncture has been used and continues to be used for a wide variety of conditions ranging from coughs and colds to trauma (mental, physical and emotional) to digestive problems to women’s and men’s health conditions.  And wait…there’s more..  pain reduction, decreased stress and anxiety and better overall health.

In it’s most basic form, acupuncture is about identifying and moving the energy we all have within us (called Qi or Chi).  Qi moves in pathways called meridians or channels that have been given the names of organs (with several exceptions).  The function of the channels may correspond closely to what a particular organ does but in more of an energetic sense rather than a physical sense.  For example, the Liver channel (Lv) is considered to be the “General” in that it is responsible for the smooth, free and easy flow of Qi in the body.  If this channel becomes overactive or the Qi becomes blocked or stagnant, emotions such as anger, frustration and rage can result.  Physical symptoms of this blockage or stagnation can be seen as red eyes in a person, headaches, muscle tension, sexual problems, digestive problems or ringing in the ears; yet there is nothing wrong with the physical organ we call the liver, all the problems are caused on an energetic level.

Acupuncturists work to identify and balance the energy channels in the body.  How is this done?  In the first step, the prospective patient fills out a detailed health history that covers a number of topics used for diagnosis; topics such as diet, exercise, sleep habits,emotional state, pain, family medical history and medications, family dynamics, sexual history, menstrual history for women.  We also look at our patients; how they walk and hold themselves, the color of the face and lips, the brightness of the eyes.  Additional diagnostic tools include the shape, color and coating of the tongue also the force, feeling and shape of the pulses in each wrist.

Once we have the patient information, then the diagnosis(es) can be made.  Identifying the correct pattern(s) is important in determining the correct treatments for each patient’s complaint.  More than one pattern may be present and require treatment.  After determining the pattern(s), the appropriate acupuncture points are chosen.  There are over 450 acupuncture points located on the body with points located on the body, arms, legs, hands and feet, face, scalp or ears.

For most patients, the points are stimulated using acupuncture needles.  Most needles are made from stainless steel, are sterile and single use.  Needles vary in size and length depending on the part of the body being treated.  There is no set number of needles used in a treatment; the number depends on the patient’s complaint, the patient’s constitution (weak, elderly or young would use fewer needles) and the technique used by the practitioner.  Once the needles are inserted, the patient lies quietly with the needles for an average of 20-30 minutes.  After that time, the needles are removed and the patient can go on with his or her day.  Most acupuncturists recommend the patient not engage in strenuous physical activity, drink plenty of water and refrain from sexual activity for the rest of the day.

What will you feel during and after treatment?  Many patients report feeling deeply relaxed and calm for several hours to days after treatment.

For more information, please contact me at 860-882-1906 or

Have You Considered Acupuncture?


Digestive Problems
Neck, Shoulder, Low Back Pain
Weight Gain
Trouble Sleeping
Hot Flashes
Irregular Periods

Have you considered Acupuncture?
This list is only a sample of the conditions that have been successfully treated with Acupuncture.  Acupuncture uses a variety of treatments, including sterile needles, herbs and lifestyle changes to balance the energy and organs of the body. The goal of this type of treatment is to allow the body to heal itself without many of the side effects seen with Western style prescription medications.

Acupuncture treatments are gentle and tailored to your body and your condition. Acupuncture needles are sterile and very thin (about as thick as a hair). Insertion is almost always painless.

Call to schedule a free consultation and find out if Acupuncture can help you.
Contact:  Carol Weeks, DC, MS, Dipl Acupuncture
Family Chiropractic Center, 2301 Silas Deane Highway, Rocky Hill, CT  06067
Phone 860-882-1906 or Fax 860-882-1908

Acupuncture ~ Chiropractic
Treatment Tailored to Your Needs.

Can Chiropractic Help Me?


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  • Do you have Headaches?  A stiff neck?  Low back pain?  Hip pain?  Shoulder or elbow pain?
  • Do your feet hurt when you first get up in the morning?
  • Do your knees bother you or do you have trouble getting up from a kneeling position?
  • Is walking not as easy or as much fun as it used to be?
  • Have you hurt yourself recently shoveling snow, doing yard work or playing sports?
  • Have you had an automobile accident within the last 3 years?
  • Do you take pain medication (Tylenol, Advil or Motrin) to get through the day?
  • Do you have numbness or tingling in your hands or fingers?
  • Has your doctor told you that “you have to live with the pain”?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then chiropractic care may be able to give you relief.  Chiropractic care is a gentle, hands-on method of increasing ease of movement and reducing pain by removing the distortions that result from joint restriction.  This is accomplished by identifying and treating the cause of the problem (joint restriction or muscle spasm, for example), not just treating the result we see or feel (pain).

At Family Chiropractic Center, we take the time to listen to what you and your body have to say.  We begin your treatment with a thorough review of your medical history and a physical examination.  We explain our findings in clear, easy-to-understand terms, and we encourage questions and active participation by the patient.

If you decide that chiropractic care is appropriate, treatment will be tailored to your condition.  This may include chiropractic manipulation, acupressure, trigger point or other muscle relaxing therapies, exercises, as well as recommendations about diet, relaxation and health maintenance.  Acupuncture and massage therapy are also available.

Family Chiropractic Center is now accepting new patients at our office on the Silas Deane Highway.  Call now for a free consultation. Find out today how to feel better and take control of your health.  Same day appointments are available.

~Carol S. Weeks, DC, MS,  Dipl Acupuncture

 Family Chiropractic Center
2301 Silas Deane Highway
Rocky Hill, CT  06067

P.S.  Did you know that stress decreases the function of our immune systems making us more susceptible to colds and flu? Call today and discover how chiropractic care can help you feel better!