Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine. From the time you enter our clinic, located in Durham, NC, to the time you leave, you will experience every staff member as a part of our healing team whose mission is to serve you and provide you with a total healing experience. This central, personal approach makes Acupuncture helpful for many conditions. A wide variety of chronic problems can be helped by Acupuncture, including: allergies, circulatory and cardiac, respiratory, gastrointestinal, urogenital and gynecological, emotional, such as anxiety or depression, cravings and addictions, neurological, such as Bell's Palsy or stroke follow-up, chronic debilitating conditions. Allergy & acupuncture might not seem to go hand-in-hand, but acupuncture can help to alleviate your allergies. People receiving acupuncture treatment often report that they: have more vitality and work more efficiently and effectively, fell "better in themselves", sleep better, get along better with partners, family, and in work.
At Traditional Acupuncture we take a holistic view of each individual and believe that everybody has an natural capability to prevail over disease and illness. Traditional Acupuncture offers Chinese medicine that uses acupuncture, herbs, and other treatment modalities, to restore harmony and balance to the body which promote natural healing and health.
Traditional Acupuncture respects your unique sensitivities and resources for coping with stresses and imbalances . It is an approach that looks at your medical and family history, lifestyle, diet, exercise, work, relationships and stress.
It is not necessary to have a specific symptom or medical diagnosis in order to benefit from Traditional Acupuncture. Often the first signs of energy imbalance are the little discomforts, which we learn to ignore, such as restless nights, general fatigue, or bad moods. Acupuncture may be helpful whether you have a major health problem or are in good health and are interested in maintaining a high level of wellness. Each person is individually treated to optimally restore balance and flow of the qi. The focus of Traditional Acupuncture treatments is to correct the underlying imbalances and to build on the strengths within each person for healing. When there is better balance, symptoms often diminish or disappear.
This central, personal approach makes Acupuncture helpful for many conditions. A wide variety of chronic problems can be helped by Acupuncture, including:
People receiving acupuncture treatment often report that they:
We proudly serve the Durham, NC area.
About Joseph Pfister
Joseph Pfister has been practicing acupuncture since 1991. He has effectively treated people with a wide variety of conditions ranging from headaches, allergies and sinus infections, and physical aches and pains, to anxiety and depression. He was trained in classical five-element acupuncture at the Traditional Acupuncture Institute in Laurel, Maryland. He holds a Master of Acupuncture degree. His clients have also sought his help with serious conditions such as cancer, HIV, diabetes, irritable bowel, Parkinson’s, fibro-myalgia, multiple personality disorder, multiple sclerosis and more.
Joe’s training includes a BA in Psychology from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary with a year residency as a chaplain at Duke University Medical Center. He is keenly interested in the spirit and the ways that acupuncture helps the spirit and emotions to heal. When a person’s spirit comes into balance, so much else just falls into place.
His practice includes Zero Balancing and Jin Chi, physical hands on work that is very relaxing promoting of physical healing and realigning of body structure.
He advises clients about their diets and supplements according not only to their current condition but also to their inherited constitutions. Suitable food and drink are key ingredients in the healing process .
He has practiced Tai Chi and Chi Gong for over 20 years for the purpose of cultivating his own health and vitality. He shares Chi Gong exercises with his clients so that they can begin to do the same for themselves. Chi Gong, a kind of meditation in motion, is an important way we can improve our own health.
Before beginning his acupuncture practice, Joe spent 21 years working with the Southwest Georgia Project for Community Education and the Institute for Southern Studies to promote civil rights, justice and community improvement in the South. He is committed to supporting the under empowered. He is committed to making acupuncture and Chinese medicine available to all who need it.
When necessary he makes house calls.
Lori Fendell, M.Ac., L.Ac., P.A., M.P.H., earned her B.S. at the State University of N.Y. at Stony Brook as a Physician Assistant, and spent thirteen years as a P.A. in primary care, gynecology, emergency medicine, health education, AIDS research, and nutritional education. Ms. Fendell also worked at a large Cambodian refugee camp for one year doing medical training and supervising the clinic. This dramatically shifted her perspective on wellness and healing especially after exposure to traditional healing and herbalism. Ms. Fendell was inspired to return to study for her Master’s in Public Health (International Health) at the University of Hawaii in 1984. As a result of her introduction to acupuncture, she attended and graduated from the Traditional Acupuncture Institute in Columbia, Maryland, and has been in full-time private practice since 1991 in Durham , North Carolina. She has also studied Chinese, Western & Eastern herbal medicine,and has incorporated them into her practice for ten years. Ms. Fendell is a guest lecturer at Duke University Medical Center, UNC-Chapel Hill and other university medical centers.
Acupuncture Treatment Sessions
Treatment sessions last about an hour, which gives ample time to tend to your particular needs. Initially you can expect to be seen weekly for four to 6 weeks. As you begin to feel better and the improvements you experience hold from one week to the next, we gradually extend the time between treatments. At any time you can decide to stop treatment or to continue on an as-needed basis. Of course, frequency of treatments varies with each individual. Many people continue to come for “tune ups”, a treatment during the change of seasons, to support wellness.
A variety of responses, slight or powerful, may occur during and after a treatment. Because these responses are unique and since progress is different for every individual, I am available by phone 24 hours after each treatment to monitor this and support your unique progress towards your specific healing goals.
Acupuncture and Conventional
I am happy to join with your other health care providers to create the best support possible. Traditional Acupuncture works well as part of the team with conventional western and other medical care. In many cases patients already being cared for by other providers may need to remain in their care. Acupuncturists cooperate with these providers and will not recommend altering medications or other therapies without consulting the personal physician or provider. Please continue any prescription medicines exactly as directed by your physician.
Scared of Needles?
Most people find treatments relaxing and enjoyable. The needles used to stimulate acupuncture points are flexible and very fine, a little thicker than a human hair. The high quality, stainless-steel needles are pre-sterilized and disposable. Most insertions are just under the surface of the skin. According to your own sensitivity the feeling ranges from nothing at all, to a momentary dull ache, to a tingling. Acupuncturists use the fewest number of needles necessary, often only three or four. We also use a Chinese herb (moxa), which is heated over acupuncture points to warm and nourish the qi.
Your First Visit
Because each person is unique you must be evaluated individually. Your initial visit is designed to help me understand your needs for seeking treatment and to assess the underlying problems leading to your symptoms. This session begins with a conversation, which covers, your health and personal history, diet, exercise, work and relationships. There is also a short physical examination and consultation. It is conducted with complete confidentiality. We will discuss the anticipated frequency of treatments. This initial session usually lasts between an hour and a half and two hours. Ordinarily, no needles are used during your first visit.
For centuries Acupuncture has been healing and revitalizing the body, mind and spirit. It is based on an understanding of the flow of life energy in nature and throughout the body. Traditional Acupuncture evolved through observing natural life cycles and the unique power to heal in each individual. Today, Acupuncture is maintaining and improving vitality and controlling and fighting disease throughout the world.
Americans Turn To Acupuncture
Health and vitality result when life energy, Qi (pronounced “chee”), is full and flowing. Qi courses through the body in channels similar to rivers coursing the surface of the earth. When qi in the body is full and flowing, we experience health and vitality. When it is not full and flowing, illness can set in. The body’s symptoms are distress signals warning of a problem in the flow of qi. If the underlying problem is not addressed, more serious problems are likely to result. Traditional Acupuncture treats underlying imbalances rather than simply trying to remove symptoms.
Acupuncture Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How long will it take? How many sessions will I need?
A. The answer to these questions varies. A rule of thumb is that it takes about a month of treatment for every year a condition has been with you. In some cases, if it is an acute problem (one that you have had for only a week or two), one or two treatments might clear it up. A long-standing problem is more intransigent and takes longer to clear. I always tell people to allow 5 or 6 treatments before stopping treatment. Acupuncture has a cumulative effect, and it may take several treatments before you notice significant improvement. If things are not starting to get better after 5 or 6 treatments, then it is time to re-evaluate whether acupuncture is for you. Usually people notice changes and improvements after a couple of treatments.
The overall number of treatments varies with the speed of your healing. As a person gets older, generally, healing takes longer. Young people respond more quickly.
Q. Can acupuncture cure my migraine headaches?
A. The short answer is that acupuncture does not cure anything. What it can do is engage and bring into balance your own healing resources. You do the actual healing. Acupuncture helps to clear up blocks to healing and to strengthen your own abilities. The relationship you establish with your practitioner sets up an atmosphere, which encourages healing. A good outcome in the case of a person with migraine headaches would be that their headaches would be less frequent and less intense. And there may be other, seemingly unrelated conditions that get better as well. Maybe constipation goes away and sleep is better or there is more mental clarity and less anxiety. The same applies to other kinds of symptoms: emotional, digestive, respiratory, circulatory, etc. And it is important to remember that I will look at underlying imbalances related to your whole life, not just particular symptoms. By treating you at a deeper level we can make more profound and enduring changes and deal with imbalances that underlie your symptoms.
Q. What can I expect to get from treatment?
A. You will get my
full attention, caring, respect and support and a well thought out
treatment plan. Most people report that they feel more vital, are
able to relax better and deal better with what life throws at them.
You will get some homework assignments to further engage your
healing and revitalizing. You can expect to know yourself better in
body, mind and spirit.
Q. What kinds of specialized knowledge or training are needed to provide Traditional Acupuncture?
A. In order to practice Traditional Acupuncture one must have knowledge of Chinese diagnosis. One must also have familiarity with acupuncture points, their location and function. One must learn how needling points affects the body, mind and spirit. Diagnosis requires an understanding of Chinese cosmology as taught in ancient classics, especially the Nei Jing. In order to be licensed to practice acupuncture in the US, a person needs to graduate from a qualified acupuncture school and pass a national or state certifying exam. This is usually three or four years of post-graduate study. School curricula require about 3,000 hours of study, which includes acupuncture theory, point location, Western medicine, Chinese Herbs, the Chinese classics and clinical supervision of patients. The Traditional Acupuncture Institute (TAI Sophia), where I graduated, also offers classes on healing relationships. Most schools require you to be college graduate.
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