What to Expect


Potential patients receive a complimentary 15-minute consultation, where we discuss your condition and overall health.  If you decide that acupuncture can help you heal and get relief, we will schedule an hour-and-a-half initial appointment.

At an initial appointment, we thoroughly review your health history, including your present complaint.

Lauren will also take your blood pressure reading, look at your tongue and take your pulses. In Chinese medicine, the tongue and pulse are important diagnostic tools, along with observation and “palpation”.Palpation is feeling areas of the body for sensations — heat, cold, distention, swelling, etc. All the senses are used to make an accurate diagnosis.

Lauren uses this information to formulate a diagnosis and treatment principle based on “pattern differentiation” and the “eight principles” of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). (If you would like to learn more about these concepts, just ask!)

Then we will schedule a follow-up series of treatments. The duration of treatment depends on the nature of the complaint, as does the combination of methods used to treat. For example, Lauren has found that using infrared heat helps stimulate and regulate the circulatory system, and often combines this with standard acupuncture treatment as well as other TCM modalities. Treatments may also include nutritional counseling and deep breathing, or meditative exercises like Qi Gong.


You can expect:

* To be listened to and heard
* To be supported in your healing
* Easy-to-understand explanations of what we’re doing, step-by-step
* Compassionate, professional treatment
* To learn new ways to nourish your overall wellness

Lauren also believes in educating people in how to take responsibility for their own health. Because she’s committed to her patients’ overall health and vitality, she is as passionate about education as she is about acupuncture. For best results, acupuncture needs to be part of a comprehensive wellness program that includes a healthy diet and exercise.


What is Traditional Chinese Medicine?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) consists of several different modalities including acupuncture, herbal therapy, cupping, moxibustion (heat), Tuina (chinese massage), acupressure, nutritional counseling, Qi Gong and Tai Chi.  It is an ancient and profound system with philosophical roots dating back to around 700 B.C. Lauren believes it compliments Western medicine very well, especially as a preventative treatment. Acupuncture is a holistic approach to health and healing within the framework of TCM.

Acupuncture works to:                                                                                                                                              

* Stimulate and regulate the circulatory system
* Reduce swelling and pain
* Increase the body’s natural ability to heal
* Support, strengthen, and “smooth out” the nervous system
* Calm the body’s stress response



The concept of yin-yang is at the core of TCM, as is the concept of Qi (pronounced “chi”) or vital energy.


Yin represents the cold, slow, or passive quality, while yang represents the hot, excited, or active quality. Balance between the two qualities results in a balanced state. Disease is due to an internal imbalance.

It is this imbalance that leads to a blockage in the flow of Qi. And this blockage is what manifests as conditions in a person’s spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical health. The aim of Traditional Chinese Medicine is to restore and maintain healthy energy flow.

Acupuncture works to stimulate the vital energy or Qi that flows through the body along twelve major pathways called “meridians.” Discovered by ancient Chinese healers more than two thousand years ago, meridians are the “energetic anatomy” of the body. They can be thought of as a system of rivers or channels flowing throughout the body.

Meridians correspond to specific internal organs and body functions. Inserting very fine needles at specific points along these meridians helps to restore the natural flow of Qi.

From a Western perspective, it is believed that the needle stick causes the central nervous system to release morphine-like pain relievers called endorphins. These endorphins can help turn off pain signals and re-regulate the body.



What conditions can be treated with acupuncture?

Does it hurt?

How long before I see results?

How do I prepare for a treatment?

Contact me here or call (415) 234-8864 to schedule an appointment.