February Newsletter

Volume 8, Number 1

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

A warm and happy welcome to the new year! We here at Turning Point hope that you have enjoyed the holiday season and are looking forward to embracing the 2010, even if it has started out as a chilly one. One of our new year's resolution is to serve you, our patients, as a ready resource of medical information and wellness support. We encourage you to submit topics for discussion. The entirety of Turning Point is a wonderfully varied group. By sharing our knowledge and care we hope to maintain a positive dialogue and support each person in building strong qi and life. 

In this issue:

  1. Joint Pain and Arthritis: Western and Eastern Approaches
  2. Complimentary Treatment Focus: Reiki
  3. Practice Updates

1. Joint Pain and Arthritis
Over 20 million American adults suffer from some form of regular joint pain or arthritis. Great Aunt Gertrude's predictions of changes in the weather based on feelings "in her bones" may or may not be verifiable, but there is a lot of use to be gained by understanding and preventing joint pain. 

Western Perspective

There are several different types of joint conditions commonly diagnosed by doctors. Bursitis and Osteoarthritis (OA) are the most prevalent non-viral conditions. Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursae, fluid-filled sacs that cushion bones at joints. This inflammation can be acute or chronic and is prevalent in athletes. The joints most susceptible include the shoulder, elbow, hip and knee joints. Osteoarthritis is the most common joint disorder. It is a degenerative condition in which the cartilage between bones wears away, resulting in bone spurs and weakened tendons. Fingers, knees, hips and the spine are frequent sites of OA. The cause of OA is unknown, but it is primarily seen as a result of aging. Symptoms begin to appear in middle age and are present in almost all adults over 70. OA also tends to run in families and those who are overweight or suffered joint injuries earlier in life have increased risk as well. Treatment for bursitis and osteoarthritis includes warm baths, stretching, massage and anti-inflammatory medication.

Eastern Perspective
As with many painful physical conditions, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) views joint pain as a result of blocked qi and classifies the pain specifically as "Bi." Blockage of the cyclical flow of qi in the meridians can be impacted by a number of factors, but the most prevalent are Cold, Wind, Dampness and Heat. Cold Bi tends to stay in one area and increases with exposure to cold weather. Wind Bi moves from joint to joint and is the result of prolonged exposure to harsh winds. Damp Bi combines joint pain with feeling of tiredness. Heat Bi can result from any of the previous conditions and is primarily characterized by hot, swollen joints. TCM considers every person's experience of bi to be different and treatments are proscribed on a case-by-case basis. In addition to acupuncture, there are several topical and herbal supplements that have been found to relieve joint-specific pain.

Summary and Strategy

The causes of joint pain may be a mystery to western medicine, but the impact of this condition may be greatly lessened by practicing TCM prevention techniques. Dress warmly in the winter. If you can't avoid exposure to extreme cold or winds, compensate by treating your sore joints and muscles to warm baths and the occasional massage. Aspirin and other over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicines can help with flare-ups, but should be used sparingly. Gentle exercise techniques such as Pilates, yoga and Tai-chi help keep your joints lubricated and qi flowing. Eating healthy and reducing your intake of dairy and greasy foods can also help lessen joint pain. Vitamin D is important for bone and joint health: you can either take a supplement or simply make sure to get 10 minutes of sun exposure per day during the winter months.

2. Complimentary Treatment Focus: Reiki
Turning Point offers a number of treatments that compliment regular acupuncture visits. For the new year we thought it would be helpful to give you a little bit of information on these treatments, starting with Reiki.

What Is It? Reiki is an ancient technique of "laying on of hands," in which the practitioner helps to bring into balance your connection to a spiritual wisdom or universal life energy. A gentle, non-invasive technique for stress reduction, nourishment and relaxation, it helps ease pain, still the mind and increase energy. "It felt like the dream-filled nap of a lifetime," says Shane Hoffman of his last session.

Who Does It? Lourdes Guzman is a Reiki Master. She has been practicing Reiki since 1994 and a master Reiki instructor for over ten years.

Why Should I Do It? A Reiki treatment feels like a glowing radiance that flows through and around the body, leaving the receiver with an immediate sense of well-being. Why wouldn't you want that?

How Much Does It Cost? Regular Reiki sessions are $90. Mention this newsletter when booking and you will receive a 15% discount!

3. Practice Updates

Turning Point is proud to announce the opening of a special Reiki room in our office suite. Make sure to check it out and ask about Reiki sessions on your next visit!

Survery question: Turning Point seeks your input. We are considering relocating to: 1) space on the 7th Ave line #1 train line across the street from Penn Station. The building is literally steps from the subway stairwell. Or 2) space near the 23rd St stop of the #1 train line or 4) space near the 28th St stop of the # 1 train. of the What's your opinion? 
To vote for Penn Station email here: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. To vote for 23rd St near 7th Ave email here:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. To vote for 28th St near 7th Ave email here: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
To rally for Columbus Cirlce email here: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Gilles Obermeyer  is offering an introductory Qi Gong class on Saturday mornings (10-11am). Classes are small and limited to 5 persons in series of 4 classes of 60 minutes. One must commit to the entire series to register. The series will feature the building blocks of medical and Internal QiGong (8 Brocades, Xin Ji QiGong, 5 Elelments, Dao Yin and more) including meditation and additional relevant exercises from Shiatsu and Bagua. Call Turning Point to register. Session begins February 13. 


Gilles Obermeyer and Rosie O'Shea are offering a couples massage special in celebration of Valentine's Day ($250). Private class couples massage is also available to learn methods of massaging your loved one. For more info email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Keep an eye out for the re-launch of our website. We've been working hard and hope you will find our new internet home a welcoming, special place. 
Finally, a bittersweet announcement. Kymberly Kelly has decided to leave Turning Point to focus on building her private practice. We wish her all best luck and will miss her healing talent and wonderful sense of humor. 

We offer gift certificates for acupuncture, Reiki and massage - all wonderful ways to take care of yourself and your loved ones and start of the new year in a healthy way! Email  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., call (212. 489. 5038) or visit our offices (1841 Broadway) to share a gift of healing.

We look forward to supporting you toward your fullest enjoyment of the season in optimum emotional, physical and spiritual health.

Be well,
E. Shane Hoffman, DAOM, LAC
Amanda Silver, LAC
Karen Ortiz, LAC
Lourdes Guzman, Reiki Master
Gilles Obermeyer, LMT
Hector Mendez
Kim Chinh Shayne Figueroa

Turning Point Acupuncture
1841 Broadway
New York City
212. 489. 5038

copyright 2010 Turning Point Acupuncture. All rights reserved. This newsletter may be reproduced in its entirety only, including this copyright line.