A real life patient spotlight: Teenage hormones, headaches and acupuncture
Zoe is a sweet, sixteen-year-old girl. She’s like most kids these days, overbooked and overworked. She’s got tennis on Mondays, violin and soccer on Tuesdays, French lessons and volunteer work on Wednesdays and so on and so on.
Zoe gets headaches almost every day, at least 4 times a week. They occur around 5pm and last until she goes to bed, luckily, she doesn’t wake up with them. They get much worse a few days before her period and on the day before her period she usually gets a migraine with nausea that leaves her not able to function. Also, her PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome) has become full of mood swings, she feels sad, depressed and angry almost a full week before her flow.
Zoe is very much like so many of our young patients at Tao to Wellness. Teens these days have a lot on their plate, they’re dealing with stress level comparable to adults. In Chinese medicine, when too much stress impacts the body things become out of balance. We get symptoms like headaches, insomnia, emotional mood swings, etc. It happens to all of us. The interesting thing about treating younger people is for some reason they respond faster to acupuncture, meaning they get faster results! In most cases, the younger a patient is the faster they get better, because the body isn’t impacted with age and deterioration. My youngest patient to date was 3 days old… the baby got his arm stuck while coming out of the vaginal canal during delivery and somehow it twisted resulting in what is called, an herb palsy. One treatment fixed his ‘broken wing’ so we called it.
So, Zoe came in and felt immediate relief after her first acupuncture session. Her headaches were about half of what they used to be. I continued to see her for acupuncture only (no herbs) weekly for about two months. Once her body was able to hold her sessions longer, I saw her every two weeks and still do. Zoe says, “I don’t think I would be able to function in life if I didn’t have acupuncture, it resets my whole body so I can accomplish the things I want to do and feel like a normal teen.”
Christina Martin is the founder of Tao to Wellness. She is an Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist and Teacher and has been in practice for fifteen years. She holds a Master’s Degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine and is a fellow of the American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine. Christina entered Acupuncture school without ever having an Acupuncture treatment. She simply felt it was her calling.