Autoimmune disease

A masked practitioner in a red hoodie with their back to the camera sets needles in masked patient's ear while the patient sits on a recliner covered in a yellow sheet. To the left, a masked patient lies back on a recliner covered in a yellow sheet. Behind them are two wooden shelves on the back wall, holding plants. In the foreground, someone’s lower half is visible as they lie under a colourful blanket on a recliner covered in a yellow sheet
photo by Stef Cordes, photo edits by Rosa Loess

About once a month someone comes in with an autoimmune diagnosis we’ve never heard of before. The most common symptoms seem to be inflammation, fatigue, pain, and brain fog. Autoimmune diseases tend to “flare up” — the symptoms associated with the condition can swing from not bad to truly terrible.

According to our patients, acupuncture helps them live with autoimmune diseases in a few ways.

Our patients tell us that acupuncture can reduce the intensity and duration of a flareup, as well as stave off an impending flareup.

We’ve also seen patients who are basically living in a prolonged flareup get immediate, significant and lasting relief from their symptoms.

We don’t expect that acupuncture will cure anyone of an autoimmune disease, but we’ve seen many people enjoy real increase in their quality of life and ability to manage symptoms.

“What does a course of treatment look like for someone with an autoimmune disorder?”

This depends on the individual situation. We do a detailed intake with each patient, and each patient receives treatment tailored for them. Many people come to us when they’re in a flare-up and their symptoms are quite challenging. In these cases, we recommend a few treatments close together (say, 2 to 4 times in a single week) which usually significantly decreases their symptoms. Some people don’t come again for treatment for another six months, or a year or two, when they’re flaring up again. Other people come for a few treatments close together and then come in regularly after that for weekly, biweekly or monthly “tune-ups”.

Some of our regular patients come in for treatment when their stress is high and they know that a flareup is likely if they don’t get acupuncture intervention.

We love it when people form their own relationship with acupuncture and develop a sense of when they need to come in! We see our patients as the experts on their own bodies. We’re just here to make acupuncture as available as possible.

If you have questions about how acupuncture can help you or someone you care about with an autoimmune disease, please get in touch.

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