|Frequently Asked Questions|
Q: WHAT IS INVOLVED IN A TREATMENT?
A: First there is a discussion on your main complaint/s. There will also be other questions that at the time you may not think are relevant to your condition, but all information is essential in order to make a thorough diagnosis. Patient honesty is needed for a successful treatment! Next your tongue and pulse are examined which help clarify the diagnosis. With the diagnosis made, and acupuncture points chosen accordingly, needles are gently inserted and left for 20 to 30 minutes.
Q: WHY DO YOU ASK ME TO STICK OUT MY TONGUE???
A: There are several things that your tongue can show us, which help us choose the correct points/herbs to use.
Q: HOW LONG DOES A TREATMENT TAKE?
A: An initial consultation takes around 1 - 1½ hours. Subsequent treatments take 1 hour on average.
Q: DO I HAVE TO HAVE ACUPUNCTURE, OR CAN I JUST GET HERBS?
A: Of course! However the same discussion is needed in an herbal consult as there is for an acupuncture consult in order to obtain a thorough diagnosis.
Q: CAN I GET A REFUND FROM MY HEALTH FUND?
A: Yes! Both Teja and Jacinda are accredited members of AACMA. Most health funds recognise Acupuncture and offer various levels of rebates. Please contact your provider for more information. You can email Point Specifics from the contacts page if you would like a list of health funds and rebates.
Q: I AM SCARED OF GETTING INJECTIONS AND BLOOD TESTS... I DON'T THINK ACUPUNCTURE IS FOR ME...
A: Below is a diagram of a needle your GP uses for injections and blood tests, the Hypodermic needle, compared with a human hair and an acupuncture needle:
This is a common concern for new patients. Many people have had traumatic experiences with needles by having blood tests and vaccinations. Often these procedures are very painful, and the area can be sore for days. Acupuncture is NOTHING like this. If you look at the diagram, you can see that the hypodermic needle, which GPs use, is quite thick and has a cutting edge... this is why it hurts! It is also hollow, so as to inject something or draw fluid out. Compare the hypodermic needle with the acupuncture needle. Point Specifics uses needles that are 0.20mm thin. Between 5 - 10 acupuncture needles can fit inside one hypodermic needle. The point of the acupuncture needle is very fine, and often you don't know that it has been put in. This is because the point is not designed for cutting, but rather for sliding into the point. Once the needles are in place, you will often forget that they are there, and after they come out there is rarely any discomfort.
Q: ARE THE NEEDLES HOLLOW? DO YOU INJECT ANYTHING INTO MY BODY?
A: No and no. See the diagram in the question above. The needles we use are stainless steel, flexible (but solid i.e not hollow) single use needles. When a needle is inserted we are manipulating your own personal Qi and we certainly not injecting anything into your body.
Q: ARE THE NEEDLES STERILE?
A: Yes. Point Specifics uses sterilised single use needles. We have a strict hand washing and skin preparation procedure. The area to be needled is first cleaned with a 70% alcohol swab.
Q: DO YOU TREAT MULTIPLE PATIENTS AT ONE TIME?
A: No. You are paying for our time and attention, so at Point Specifics we treat one person at a time. If we are not in the treatment room with you, we are in the dispensary preparing your medicinal formula.
Q: DO YOU DO CONSULTATIONS FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE TOO FAR AWAY TO ATTEND YOUR CLINIC?
A: Yes! Contact us for more information. We can do a skype consultation and express post your raw/powdered herbs to you anywhere in Australia!
Q: I HAVE A FRIEND WHO RECKONS YOU CHINESE MEDICINE QUACKS ARE FULL OF IT! MY GP/GYNAECOLOGIST/OBSTETRICIAN DOESN'T THINK MUCH OF YOU GUYS EITHER. WHAT'S BEHIND ALL THIS CHINESE MEDICINE STUFF?
For the full version of this answer, please click here.
A: The people answering this question are Teja and Jacinda Jaensch, who spent an accumulated 10 years of full-time study at the University of Technology, Sydney and the Yunnan Normal University of China. They hold bachelor degrees in Health Sciences, were on the Dean's merit list of Academic Excellence, and won the 2006 Sunten and AACMA prizes for academic achievement. Please note that in NSW, both UTS and UNSW both have degree programs in Chinese Medicine, and Sydney University runs a Masters program in Chinese Medicine. Please also note that in 2012, NSW is to follow Victoria's example, and Traditional Chinese Medicine will become a registered practice (meaning you will be able to claim treatments through medicare - just like when visiting your GP), much to the disgust of the Western Medical body. Therefore it is to be expected that we would receive animosity from that quarter.
Simply put, Chinese Medicine is a form of healing developed over thousands of years in China, and is now practised all around the world. Chinese Medicine uses therapies to address imbalances within the body that are causing disease or distress. We look at the body as a whole, therefore if you suffer from depression, from a Chinese Medicine perspective it is not just 'in your head'. If two people come in with a cough, they may get totally different herbal prescriptions depending on their presentation and constitution. It is an individual medicine and encompasses your diet and lifestyle. By seeking the cause of your disease/condition, we aim to avoid chasing your symptoms around, and rather get to the heart of the issue.
Chinese Medicine should not need to justify itself. Chinese Medicine practitioners - like Teja and Jacinda - are simply service providers, just like GPs/OBGYNs/etc, and it is up to you whether you benefit from that particular service. Imagine if we take all the energy that both sides of the argument spend on defaming and insulting each other, and we used that energy to do something constructive...
Q: HOW DOES ACUPUNCTURE WORK?
A: It depends on which perspective you are looking from. From a Western biomedical framework of thought, acupuncture remains largely mysterious. It is suggested that the use of fine needles stimulates the release of various hormones. From a Chinese Medical paradigm, acupuncture stimulates the body to heal itself. Fine needles are placed in specific points around the body, tapping into a special energy (Qi - pronounced 'Cheee'). Acupuncture can be seen as a catalyst for health, it gives the body a kick start on it's way to well-being. As acupuncturists, we don't 'cure' you, we enable your body to heal itself. A therapist of Chinese medicine is not superior to his/her patient, rather we are equals, just not equivalents.
Q: I WANT TO COME FOR TREATMENT TO HELP ME FALL PREGNANT... CAN MY PARTNER COME WITH ME?
A: Yes! It is common for both partners to attend the first session, although there is usually only enough time for one person to get treatment. We also have partner assessment forms that you can take home if your partner cannot make it in for treatment, and we then use that information to prescribe the appropriate medicines. If you both want treatment at the same session, then let us know when you make your booking so we can leave enough time.
Q: WHAT IS PRECONCEPTION CARE, AND WHY ARE YOU ASKING ME TO WAIT BEFORE TRYING AGAIN FOR A BABY?
A: According to Chinese Medicine, the health of the parents at the time of conception is vital to the future health of the child. So what does this mean? Just stop smoking for the few nights around ovulation? No. Gametes (sperm and follicles/eggs) take around 3 months to develop from a single cell into a functional sperm or follicle. During this 3 month period, whatever one eats, drinks, breathes in, puts on ones skin, experiences emotionally, all of these factors will influence the growth of that sperm/follicle that could be fertilised into your future child. Ergo, we usually recommend a period of time from when you start treatment where you eliminate alcohol, tobacco, junk food, soft drinks, excessive refined sugars, reduce tea/coffee, increase whole foods, eat regularly, drink plenty of fluids, take supplements if necessary, and take TCM herbs to strengthen the sperm and follicles. When this happens, we have the best chance of helping you fall pregnant, and then stay pregnant. In some cases with a history of miscarriage, the preconception period may be longer. Please contact the clinic for more information, or read more on our Fertility page. Also check out this interesting research!
Q: WHY DO YOU SO STRONGLY EMPHASISE MY LIFESTYLE CHOICES AND THEIR IMPACT ON MY HEALTH? CAN'T YOU JUST STICK SOME PINS IN ME AND MAKE ME BETTER?
A: LSA, or lifestyle advice, is probably the most important aspects that will lead to you regaining control of your health. When we use acupuncture, we make your system more efficient, the needles act like a catalyst. It is YOUR energy that cures you, we just make it all work faster. Journalist and Novelist Daniel Akst tells us that half of all deaths in American (and therefore presumabably here too...) come from over-eating, smoking (in the USA, more people die each year from tabacco related diseases than were lost in World War 2), drinking too much and failing to exercise, behaviours we endulge in knowing all along that we're commiting slow motion suicide. 'We are the architects of our own demise...' he says. Before any therapist, be they inclinded towards Western Medicine or Eastern, can make a difference in your life, you have to take responsibility for what is in your control and make changes to the way you live your life. You know already what these changes are, you know you need to exercise more, eat better, drink more room temperature water, stop smoking, drink less alchol and never EVER drink Diet Coke, get more sleep, take up tai chi or yoga and de-stress, moderate your sexual activity, get out and plant some trees, etc. Although we know that you know these things, when you come in and see us at the clinic, we'll just give you friendly reminders!
Q: I'M TRYING TO FALL PREGNANT, AND EVERY TIME ONE OF MY FRIENDS TELLS ME THAT THEY'RE PREGNANT OR HAS A BABY... I FEEL ANGRY AND JEALOUS, AND THEN I FEEL GUILTY THAT I'M NOT HAPPY FOR THEM. DO OTHER WOMEN FEEL THIS WAY TOO?
A: Yes. 99.8% of women we see for fertility experience the same phenomena. Biological pain is something that can't be soothed with rationality.
Q: I'M INTERSTED IN DOING TAI CHI, BUT MY PRIEST ADVISES AGAINST IT AS BY 'EMPTYING MY MIND' I WILL ALLOW SPACE FOR DEMONS TO INFEST ME... IS THIS TRUE?
Q: I'VE HEARD THAT POINT SPECIFICS IS MOVING FROM DURAL TO KELLYVILLE... IS THAT RIGHT?
A: Yes! We no longer practice in Arcadia or Dural (or the city). Point Specifics now operates from 1 Rhodes Place, Kellyville (just down from Windsor Road). Our new clinic number is 8807 2828.
Q: Does a Doula replace my partner in the labour room?
A: No. The labour room has many different energies at different stages. There will be times when you just want the support of your husband/partner. In this situation the Doula can be in the background preparing hot towels, filling the bath, getting drinks etc. Then there will be times when reassurance is needed - you and your husband need to be told that everything is OK, that you're both doing really well. This sounds simple enough, but just by having someone there to say that to you (someone that you've gotten to know really well and trust) can get you through another hour - which also could be the difference between 7cms and 10cms! At other times the husband/partner may look lost and need guidance - a Doula can provide this. And there will be times when you will need an advocate - someone who is not caught up in the emotional aspect of the labour to fully express to the hospital staff your wishes/concerns/wants and don't wants. This is where a Doula is invaluable.
Q: What sort of people hire a Doula?
A: Most couples who hire a Doula do so because they want to be supported in having an active birth. They want a normal, natural birth and they want to be able to be free to do whatever they feel like in labour, within the boundaries of safety. Your memories of labour will stay with you for the rest of your life. It may be your first pregnancy, second or fifth - everyone benefits from hiring a Doula.
Q: I would really like to have a Doula at my birth, but my husband feels that we don't need one...?
A: Your husband may be right, however, to make sure, just to be on the safe side, please ask him to lie down with his feet in stirrups and have his penis yanked in half. If during this process he feels completely calm and in control, and doesn't need any help dealing with his experience, then yes, he's probably right... If he feels that having a Doula will mean that he is not needed/superfluous - this is not the case!!! He can't be replaced! The Doula however has certain skills (plus the benefit of not being directly related to you, therefore emotionally involved) that can help both partners get the birth they really want!
Q: Does it matter where I'm having my baby as to whether or not I can have a Doula?
A: No. Whether you are going private or public, having your baby at a birth centre or at home every woman has the right to a Doula as part of her support team.
Q: But I'm having a Caesarean... I don't need a Doula do I?
A: You can! The operating theatre can be a scary place - an unfamiliar room with unfamiliar people looking at you. Once baby is born your partner will usually go to spend time with him/her, leaving you alone with the surgeon, anaesthetist and nurses while you get sutured up. How great would it be to have someone you trust and respect, who can relay what's going on in layman's terms, there by your side and who will stay with you while the epidural wears off?!
Q: I'm going private - doesn't that mean a midwife will stay with me for the whole thing because I'm paying extra?
A: I'm afraid not. The hospital system at the moment cannot afford one midwife to stay with one labouring woman. The ratio of midwives to labouring women in any hospital system is more likely 1:3. A midwife will come in periodically to check your temperature, blood pressure, heart rate and monitor the baby (occasionally check dilation) but that's about all, because this is all they have time for. The continuity of support you are looking for in a midwife is provided by a Doula.