Acupuncture for Graves’ Disease
Graves’ disease is a type of Hyperthyroidism. Whereby an auto immune response causes the Thyroid gland to enlarge. This causes the thyroid gland to become over active, releasing excessive amounts of hormones which causes the metabolism to speed up. This increase in metabolism causes symptoms such as: weight loss, feeling hot, insomnia, frequent bowel movements, excessive appetite and anxiety. In Chinese medicine, these are all signs of heat, which can come from what we call an excessive or deficient condition. Often in women there will also be menstrual issues such as heavy or break through bleeding. There has been a lot of research showing that thyroid conditions are a contributing factor to female infertility. Often when I see this in patient’s, their history shows heat signs for most of their life, which have slowly gotten worse culminating in Hyperthyroidism/Graves’ Disease. Prolonged heat like in nature, will damage the fluids within the body, causing a very complicated presentation of symptoms. The philosophy here is to clear the excessive heat and regulate the body to try and return it to balance. Acupuncture points are selected which have a regulating affect on the metabolism as well as points that clear the heat. The beauty of Acupuncture here is its ability to treat the underlying disorder which is causing the Thyroid to behave abnormally, so often you will notice a whole body improvement in symptoms, not just those related to the Thyroid issue, as everything is connected.