Moxibustion, You and the Flu

Jan 17, 2018 | Acupuncture, Herbal Medicine, News


All you need do is Google anything related to the flu this season and you will be flooded with report after report of how bad it is out there right now. Many are going so far as to call it the “worst flu season in history.” Now, we’re not sure we’d go this far, but if you set aside the sensationalist, attention grabbing headlines, we can all agree this year’s flu is particularly virulent with strong symptoms and significant staying power.


However, there is some good news for those who are willing to explore the alternative approaches to health and well-being. Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese medicine has some nifty tricks up its sleeve with regard to helping us beat this seasonal affliction. One of these is moxibustion, or simply moxa to those in the business.


Moxibustion is the practice of burning a small amount of an herb called mugwort, Artemisia vulgaris, on, or near a patient’s skin in a manner that allows a perceptible amount of heat to penetrate the skin without causing any lasting burn. Now, with something called mugwort you might be inclined to conjure up images of Harry Potter and magic. And while this is not completely accurate, those who have seen the power of mugwort in action often find the results no less amazing.


In fact, in China moxibustion has been termed “the poor man’s flu shot.” Study after study out of China confirms that moxibustion can actually boost the body’s white blood cell count giving a much needed boost to our immune systems during this seasonal flu assault. And with the effectiveness of this year’s flu shot hovering somewhere around the 10% mark, you might want to consider all other possible avenues capable of giving you a leg up. Another amazing thing about moxibustion is that your acupuncturist can even show you how to administer it on yourself at home so that you can help yourself stay healthy between appointments.


But helping us avert the flu is not moxa’s only benefit.


Using a variety of forms from direct moxa, to indirect moxa, to needle top moxa (see video below), a qualified practitioner can employ moxibustion to ward off the common cold, give a much needed boost of internal warmth to a cold person, relieve aches and pains, calm stomach and digestive problems, address common causes of infertility, and even to successfully turn a breech presenting baby.


If you would like to learn more about moxibustion, or experience its healing powers for yourself, then we would love to share the art of this ancient healing modality with you. Take charge of your health, book an appointment with us, and let us show you how acupuncture, Traditional Chinese medicine, and moxibustion can help you Stay On Point!