Moxibustion involves the focused application of warmth on the body by burning natural compressed mugwort leaf ( Folium Artemisiae Argyi ). Moxibustion is mainly applied in two ways, by burning moxa wands, that are lit and suspended above the skin, or moxa cones that are placed over a protective medium on the skin before being lit. In both cases, the combustion of mugwort leaf uses the warmth and the therapeutic herbal vapour to improve the circulation of Qi and Blood, warm the meridians, relieve pain, increase resistance to disease and subdue swelling.
What is the science behind Moxibustion?
Due to its warming actions, the application of Moxibustion produces a range of effects on the body which makes it suitable for a vast number of conditions.
Moxibustion exhibits immunoregulatory effects by increasing the production of white and red blood cells in the body. For example, it stimulates the production of proteins in the body called interferons that are produced to target the immune system against infections and tumours.
Moxibustion improves the circulation of blood and lymph in the local area and relaxes contractile tissue to relieve ischaemic pain and tension in rigid muscles.
Moxibustion also induces neurotransmitters, chemicals that are important for regulating pain and spasms and play an important role in neurological disorders such as depression and anxiety.
What will happen during the Moxibustion treatment?
During the treatment, we will ask you to pull aside or remove any clothing that is covering the area requiring Moxibustion treatment and then to either sit or lie down on the treatment couch and relax.
For Moxa Wand therapy, we will light the Moxa Wand and suspend it above the skin in the local area such as on the wrists for carpal tunnel syndrome, or at specific acupuncture points that are applicable to your condition. We are trained in all Moxa Wand therapy techniques which will be adopted throughout the treatment such as Circling technique and Sparrow-Pecking technique. There is no contact involved between the wand and the skin at any point during this therapy.
During Moxa Cone Therapy, we will ask you to lie still and place small moxa cones on a substance which is then placed on the skin, usually at acupuncture points. These substances act as mediums and range from herbal creams to thin slices of raw herbs, the therapeutic properties of which work in synergy with those of the burning mugwort leaf. The moxa cone is then lit, allowed to burn and then removed immediately before the cone is completely burnt. The procedure is then repeated several times. Moxa Cone Therapy can be used on the hands, the arms, legs and the abdominal area, but is most commonly applied on the back.
Moxibustion therapy lasts approximately 10-15 minutes depending on the condition being treated. During the treatment, you will feel a pleasantly warming sensation in the local area and the surrounding skin will also appear reddened from the increased blood supply to the skin.
What can Moxibustion be used for?
Moxibustion can be used for a wide range of conditions and is particularly effective for chronic conditions and constitutional weakness such as:
- Arthritic conditions such as Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis
- Neurological conditions such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Bell's Palsy and fibromyalgia
- Sports injuries
- Upper respiratory tract infections and asthma
- Digestive disorders such as constipation and IBS
- Gynaecological conditions such as painful periods and excessive vaginal discharge
- Reproductive conditions such as abnormal foetal position, infertility, assisted IVF and impotence
- Common cold and fatigue
Are there any risks in Moxibustion treatment?
Moxibustion is an extremely safe procedure but carries certain risks such as skin burn if it is not properly carried out by an adequately trained practitioner of Traditional Chinese Medicine. We have received comprehensive training in all Moxibustion therapies and both Moxa Wand and Moxa Cone treatments with us involve no contact between the mugwort and the skin at any time. You can therefore be assured that such Moxibustion treatments are carried out by a fully qualified professional.