Accupuncture Visits for Rheumatoid Arthritis

I admit it, I’ve done a terrible job keeping up with posts on how acupuncture is going for me.  So rather than waiting to write a post where I tell you exactly how many visits I’ve had and what’s happened at each one, etc., I’m just going to take the easy road and make it simple.  I’ve gone to every Saturday appointment except for two and last Saturday I got a parking ticket….so much for letting that relaxed feeling linger……

I can tell you that whenever I do go in for acupuncture, I get a flare during the visit.  You might think that sounds terrible, but to me I think of it as progress.  Anything natural will make you flare up, it’s just part of the process.  And that’s the hardest part really, is how to tell the difference between something that is making you worse or something that is making you better when they both have the same reactions.  This excludes immune suppressive drugs because they work entirely differently.

Within an hour usually, my flare subsides and lately I feel fairly great for a few days before the inflammation comes back to its normal state.  I would definitely say the acupuncture is making a positive difference, however it’s very slight.  I’ve decided to keep going however, based on theory.  So here are my theories on why I should keep going to acupuncture:

1.  Acupuncture increases endorphins.  Endorphins help heal the body.  Therefore, I must be doing some, even if it’s small, amount of healing during the visit.

2.  Acupuncture increases circulation.  Over time, perhaps increasing the circulation will make a bigger decrease in the amount of inflammation in my body.

3.  Even if the decrease in inflammation is very slight, it is still something.  And perhaps that small amount will slow down the erosion and disability.

4.  The Placebo effect.  As long as I don’t get any more parking tickets, perhaps the placebo effect of thinking the acupuncture is helping somewhat, will help decrease the inflammation.

Michael has been using a Chinese technique that would make some people cringe where you prick near the fingernail with a needle in certain spots (on a few of the fingers on each hand) and cause your hands to bleed for a moment.  Maybe that doesn’t sound fun to you, and it isn’t really.  It’s nothing compared to RA pain.  I do, in all honesty feel like it is decreasing the inflammation more so than it was before he had tried this technique.  I was glad that he was open to asking me if I’d like to try it because most people would probably be against the idea.  To me it makes logical sense as well, that it would increase circulation.

So there you have it in a nutshell.  I’m going in tomorrow and this time I’ll circle around for 10 minutes if I have to so I can find a parking spot that doesn’t allow for any more cruel tickets.  I hope you all have a great weekend and thanks as always for visiting!

Mercury at the dentist’s office

With little fanfare, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this week acknowledged on its Web site that mercury amalgam fillings -- the silvery material used for decades to plug cavities -- could be harmful.

With little fanfare, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this week acknowledged on its Web site that mercury amalgam fillings -- the silvery material used for decades to plug cavities -- could be harmful.

“Mercury is highly toxic to human beings.  In addition, having toxic metals in your body increases the activity and the damage done by free radicals…”

I missed part of the conversation on the radio the other day. A man who is part of the American Dental Association said that dentists are STILL using mercury for fillings, but that they don’t tell you it’s mercury, they tell you it’s silver. He even said that that phrase “silver” is encouraged and that dentists are discouraged to ever use the term mercury. He also said that mercury causes Alzheimer’s, and a host of other diseases, as well as can cause infertility. The dentist office itself, because it has mercury in the air is a toxic place, especially to pregnant women.

The radio host was shocked and kept asking why in the world were dentists still using mercury?  Apparently, the FDA thinks it’s safe.  “The FDA has, for decades, ridiculously insisted that mercury fillings pose no health threat whatsoever to children.” The guest explained that mercury fillings are faster because there’s less craftsmanship involved and it can mold much more quickly, etc.  Basically, a dentist can get far more patients in and out.  When asked if he thought Mercury could cause autism, his answer was yes.

“For years there has been debate in the dental profession regarding the pros and cons of using silver amalgam fillings, which contain about 50% mercury, to restore cavities.”

“A single dental amalgam filling with a surface area of only 1/2 square cm is estimated to release as much as 15 micrograms of mercury per day primarily through evaporation and mechanical wear.”

I explained my concern and what I had heard on the radio to a friend the other day.   She told me that her acupuncturist knew many Lupus patients who had their silver fillings taken out– only to show no improvement.

As I thought about it what my friend told me, I realized that if you don’t understand how drugs work with autoimmune diseases, then this acupuncturist simply isn’t putting two and two together.

Lupus, just like Rheumatoid Arthritis is medicated with corticosteroids and chemotherapy drugs, generally speaking.  This means that the body is being told not to react.  Both corticosteroids and chemotherapy drugs are immune suppressant drugs.  Even if an infection were to enter the body, a person who is on these drugs can and most likely will have trouble fighting off the infection because their body isn’t reacting to the infection in a normal, healthy way.  Instead, the drugs tell the body to basically shut off all reactions.  Even cuts are suppose to be reported to your doctor if you are on these drugs.  Cuts can turn into infections and infections can turn into serious complications which have in some cases, lead to death.   My suggestion to her was that, a Lupus patient wasn’t a good example of whether or not removing the fillings were helpful because of the drugs keep you from knowing what’s really going on.  If however, you took an autistic child that is being treated with diet only and not drugs, and changed out their fillings, then that might be a better example of how mercury fillings affect the body because they are so sensitive.

If you have a choice between a silver filling or a ceramic one, I think the choice is obvious regardless of the price.  “Amalgam is a blend of mercury, silver and other metals; when they bond together, the mercury is said to be rendered stable and unlikely to leach into your system. But lots of people beg to differ, saying the mercury not only is absorbed by the body but may cause neurological problems. Some believe mercury fillings trigger such disorders as multiple sclerosis, though research hasn’t borne that out.“”

%d bloggers like this: