In Washington state, Acupuncture is listed as part of the “essential workforce” because it supports the health and wellness of those who provide our infrastructure. I am thankful for the stay-home mandate because it will save lives and decrease the severity of the pandemic.

This is a confusing time for all of us as we struggle with the individual effort to self-quarantine and to do our part in flattening the curve. The burden is heavy on our public health system and estimated to get worse. My practice has always been the care of those who are ill or in pain, but this is a time when the most help I can give is to not see patients.

In the middle of all this, I was reminded that I LOVE my work. I am so grateful for all the wonderful patients I see and who have crossed my path over the last 17 years. So, I am motivated to offer any support within my scope and ability. Here are some suggestions to consider:

Herbal medicine
Chinese herbal formulas can offer support on all fronts, from basic stress management to alleviating seasonal allergies. Some formulas are specifically for building the immune system, which is what we all need right now and mitigating early-stage cold or flu. I am currently building my inventory and will deliver to anyone in the West Seattle area. If you live further away I can have them shipped to you directly.

Other herbs
Research on Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) has continually shown antiviral activity and is established as safe by the FDA. It effectively “punches holes” in the outer membrane of the viral cell rendering it non-infectious. Further researchhas shown that taking it prophylactically strengthens the response to the virus thereby decreasing the impact. The necessary medicinal dose is 1 teaspoon 3 times per day, preferably away from food. Also, be sure to buy a good quality product by such reputable brands as Gaia or Herbpharm.

Essential oils
Room diffusers are lovely to have around, both at home and at work. As far as effectiveness for respiratory inflammation and infections, eucalyptus is the best. There are hundreds of species of eucalyptus and research has shown that specifically Eucalyptus globulus has the most antiviral activity. Again, use a good quality organic product, such as from The Herbalist or Dandelion Botanical Company. The medicinal dose for this substance would be steam-inhalation at least 1 time per day. The easiest method is steaming hot water in a bowl with a towel draped over your head. The water should be comfortably hot, but not scalding. Add 2 drops of the oil every 20-30 seconds and breathe it in deeply. DO NOT TAKE DROPS ORALLY!

Kinesiotape
If you are needing some tape or might be curious to try it, I would be happy to attempt a video call to show you some techniques. The brand I recommend is Rocktape for its high quality and lasting effectiveness. Again, if you need assistance with ordering, I am happy to help.

Other resources to promote wellness:

Nutrition – 70% of your immune system is through your gut, therefore, your food choices directly impact your immune system. Now is a great opportunity to try some recipes to promote a healthy gut. The amazing nutritionist and dietician, and my fabulous officemate, Michelle Babb, offers lots of delectable recipes on her website. They are quick, easy and nutritious. She also offers video appointments in case you have specific needs.

Movement – Many of us are experiencing even more screen time. This means increased sedentary habits. Movement promotes chemical changes via fascial movement and neural pathways, improves circulation, supports all hormonal activity and metabolism, and encourages immunity and detoxification. Take a walk, stretch, or maybe try something new, like Tai Chi. A wonderful local sensei is Viola Brumbaugh at Wise Orchid, who is now offering classes online.

Sleep – Hands down the best for your health and wellness. Make sure to get at least 8 hours per night.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. I hope to offer support and resources for you and the wellness of those around you.

With gratitude,
Esther