Tag Archives: Michelle Gellis

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Treating Neuromuscular Facial Conditions-A Multifaceted Approach

 

 

Today I am going to be speaking to you about neuromuscular facial conditions and a multifaceted approach to treating them.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gellis and I am an acupuncture physician. Today I am going to be speaking to you about neuromuscular facial conditions and a multifaceted approach to treating them. So a lot of you know me for cosmetic acupuncture.

one of the lesser known things that is really important to have under your belt if you’re doing cosmetic. Acupuncture is a really good working knowledge of the muscles of the face and how they can be affected through different physical conditions. So will you go for the fir to to the first slide?

So I had, many years ago, about 15 years ago, I had started. Researching using some of the different techniques that I was using on my cosmetic patients to help patients with different neuromuscular facial conditions. And I wrote a journal article in the Journal of Chinese Medicine about the topic, so if you’re interested, you can look it up.

It is called a multifaceted approach to treating neuromuscular facial Conditions. And yes, I am outside. I don’t have a bird in my house. I live in Florida, so there are some birds tweeting. So what. Is a neuromuscular facial condition. That is the first thing that we are going to talk about, and then I am going to go through the whole theory of why using a multifaceted approach can be very beneficial.

I’m going to talk about submuscular needling, scalp acupuncture, facial motor points, and then a little bit about facial cupping and guas. So a neuromuscular facial condition is any sort of a disorder that affects the face and it can be muscular meaning it. Prevents you from being able to move any of the muscles of your mouth or your eyes or your cheeks or something that has to do with the neurological system of your face causing pain, twitches a lot of sensation like heat or cold or lack of sensation.

So there’s quite a few different diseases and I’ll touch on some of those that can cause these problems to happen. But the theory that I came up with, that I teach and I’ve been using for many years is that instead of just doing your typical constitutional treatment and maybe a few face points that if you use.

Several different modalities at once. It can really provide for the best results for your patients. So I do a combination of traditional TCM treatment. Then I use facial motor points, sub submuscular, needling, scalp, acupuncture, and , the person is not in too much pain. I can do facial cupping in Gua and even dermal can be incorporated in.

So what are some examples of neuromuscular facial conditions? The most common is Bell’s Palsy. Most of us throughout the course of our treatment career. Through our practice, we will come across at least one patient with Bell’s Palsy and some of them will be, it’ll be a new case and they want help so it doesn’t get any worse or so that it gets better faster.

And for some people they might have had Bell’s Palsy many years ago and they still have some of the residual. Signs and symptoms. Ramsey Hunt Syndrome, which is similar to Bell’s Palsy, but has some additional issues. Ptosis, which is a drooping of the eyelid synkanesis, which is where you try to move one part of your face and another part of your face moves.

Stroke, which can affect the face drooping in the face. Tmj. Any sort of temporal mandibular joint disorder trigeminal neuralgia, which is spatial pain, ms. And there are many others. Okay. . So the face is unique because the face is the only part of our body where the skin is directly connected to the muscle, and that is why we can move.

The skin on our face without having to move any bones. You can blink your eyes, you can smile, you can purse your lips, and you don’t have to move any bones anywhere else on your body if you want your skin to move. You have to actually move a bone in order for it to move. This is a cross section of the face and you can see this is the cheek here.

We have the mimetic muscle, which Goes out to the outer layer of the skin. We have some fat here. And the mimetic muscle is invested in this mass layer. It’s a superficial, muscular, epi neurotic system. And it is what allows the muscles to make our facial express. and the facial nerve is invested deep within the facial fascia.

So by using a submuscular or in some instances an intramuscular needling technique, you can increase the flow of blood and chi in the area. You can break up those fossil adhesions that might exist, and you can stimulate collagen production in the area. . So there are various places in the face where.

Submuscular needling is very beneficial. Not just the face and the scalp. So the auricular muscles, and I incorporate this as part of my cosmetic acupuncture treatments, the temporalis muscles, and this can help a lot with. Headaches and it also can help to get movement back in the face.

It’s very beneficial for T M J and trigeminal neuralgia, the maier. This is great doing submuscular needling underneath the maier for individuals who have tmj. The digastric muscle underneath the anterior digastric, underneath the chin. This can help to lift up underneath the chin area. The frontals can help both with cosmetically, with wrinkles, but can also help.

Lift the eyebrow, get movement going cuz your frontal is connected to your eyebrows. So for individuals who’ve had a stroke or a half bells palsy, by doing the submuscular needling, you can help to get that movement going back in the eyebrows and in turn in the eyelids, the procerus muscle, which. Is in between the eyebrows, the lader muscle, which is underneath the eyebrow, and oh, I missed the platysma.

The platysma, which runs from your jawbone down to your clavicle, and using submuscular needling can help more on a cosmetic level, but with the skin on the. So how this works is I showed you that cross section of the face. The nerves can get trapped, the facial nerve can get trapped and by using needles, let me see if I have it in my next slide.

I don’t using a needle to needle from the skin. Down through the fascia, you are actually helping to break up some of those fascial adhesions and to release any nerves that have been. Entrapped. So for example, let’s say you had a pet patient who had headaches, frontal headaches or ha who had some sort of muscular weakness through MS or Bell’s Palsy in their forehead.

You can take your needles and go right underneath the muscles and do some submuscular needle. . So here is a video, so I gotta get it here.

So when needling the frontals muscle, the,

so when needling the frontals muscle, the. Way that you isolate the muscle is you ask your patient to raise their eyebrows. Go ahead and raise your eyebrows, okay? And then relax and you can find the border of the frontals. Muscle and the way that you needle is you’re going to go from the origin to the insertion.

So the origin is up here and the insertion is here. And typically what I do is I will put in. , usually three needles on the lateral edge, and I will put in two needles. On the medial side, and when you’re needling, what’s important is that the angle of the tube is the angle that the needle’s gonna go in.

So if you go like this, it’s going to go too deep. If you go like this, it’s going to be too shallow. I use. My thumb or a finger to help to guide the needle. So you wanna keep your fingers out of the way when you’re actually inserting. That way you can get to the correct depth right underneath the muscle.

That’s the lateral side. Then you’re going to do the medial side and usually. Two needles will suffice and I do the one side and then I do the other side and I’m using half inch needles. You can use one inch needles depending on how big your patience forehead is.

So as you can see, needling underneath the muscle as I mentioned, will bring energy to the muscle and it can help if there’s any sort of tension in the headache. And on a more cosmetic level, it can help to stimulate collagen in the. Another thing that’s really beneficial to incorporate, and you can incorporate this at the same time you are doing some of your other treatments, is scalp acupuncture.

And scalp acupuncture is part of a class that I teach on treating neuromuscular facial conditions, but I only teach scalp acupuncture as it pertains to the. And neuromuscular conditions with the face. So here is a cross-section of scalp and there are one of the important things when you’re learning scalp acupuncture is how to measure the scalp.

And it is certainly beyond the scope of this short lecture to go through the whole thing. But essentially you when you’re measuring the. it is in different sections. You’re not working with acupuncture points, so you find the horizontal line, you find the vertical line, and then within the motor area or the sensory area, it’s broken up into three sections and the.

Two-fifths is the area that pertains to the face. So you could be needling this and at the same time, so in order to help the motor function, you could be needling this and at the same time doing some local points to help to get some of that movement going.

and this is a short video of what that needling technique looks like

when you’re needling the scalp. It’s important to angle the needle properly so that it goes into the loose connective tissue. I like using a tube. You can freehand if you’d like, but I find that the tube helps me to guide the needle. To the correct depth. I tap the needle in, remove the tube, and then I use my free hand to guide the needle.

If the needle is improperly, your patient should not feel any pain, so you’ll know that you’re into the loose connective tissue. If your patient doesn’t have any pain, when you. Once the needle is in, you stimulate it gently for 30 seconds just like this. Or you can use electricity.

So next up are facial motor points and essentially when. Muscle is not functioning properly. It is either over functioning or under functioning. So it’s either flacid and it’s not firing properly or. It’s over firing and causing too much tension. What the theory behind motor points are is you find the most.

Excitable part of the muscle. It’s essentially where the nerve goes into the muscle and you are gonna place a needle there. Fortunately, for us, many motor points, especially on the face, are actually acupuncture points. So you find the acupuncture point that correlates to the muscle. And in this case, I’ve chosen the frontal.

and the motor point for the frontals is gallbladder 14. So you would needle this, you can stimulate it, and it helps. It serves as a reset switch to get that muscle back into normal functioning.

So I had spoken about Fossil ad Hess. Before, and this is a picture of fascia and here is where the nerve would go. And as you can imagine if you had all of this fibrous fascia, adhesions going on and there was a nerve that was trapped in here, it would be very difficult for. Muscle to function properly for the nerve to do its job.

So one of the things that can really help is facial cupping and facial guha because when you’re moving these small, so these are very uniquely designed glass facial cups, and the rubber part is really easy to squeeze as opposed to. The ones that are more difficult to squeeze and they’re small, and they move around really nicely, they glide on the face and they can help to bring energy back into the muscles to break up the fossil adhesions.

And the same thing with these Jade Guha tools. The Guha tools. When you can use these edges here and you can stimulate different points and you can really get in there up against the bone and help to break up some of the fossil adhesions that might exist.

and I think I just have a picture. There’s no video here, but this would be an example if you were working and you were doing cupping on the face, starting at an acupuncture point, moving the cup up to another acupuncture point. And this has a very lifting effect on the face and. Then going and doing a suction and release down the neck.

You never wanna drag the cup up or down the neck. In my webinar about facial cupping in Guha, I really emphasize safety because it’s so important when you’re working around the neck and the face to be very safe. You don’t wanna cause any bruising. You don’t, you’re working along major vessels, you don’t.

Release any blood clots. So suctioning and releasing down the neck and then just working underneath the clavicle can really have a wonderful lifting, toning, and rejuvenating effect on the face, especially your patients that have some sort of Like degeneration. It’s a wonderful, it’s almost like a massage, and it gets that blood flowing.

It gets the blood up into the muscle and can really help getting that muscle function going again. and the same with Guha. Here’s a picture of me doing some guha along the jawline. This was for cosmetic reasons for sculpting, but can really help to get that movement going. And if a muscle hasn’t been used in a long time, they can get stiff and gua can be.

Now dermal rolling is something that is used on a very superficial, gentle level, but it can help to. Reeducate the nerves and the muscles and the skin, because the skin, if it, let’s say someone has had an injury to the face, maybe they had a facelift and now they have neuropathy and they can’t feel anything.

by doing some of your maybe scalp acupuncture, some body points. And then I sell my patients Dermer rollers and they bring them home and I teach them gently how to use it along some of the channels to stimulate the channel, the meridians, and just to stimulate the skin to reeducate the nervous.

These are some of the publications, my publications, and the one I was talking about was from 2016. It’s a multifaceted approach to treatment of neuromuscular facial conditions, which goes much more into depth about what I was just talking about and. I also teach classes on that and you can find my website, facial acupuncture classes.com if you wanna learn more.

Also on social with my first and last name. And that is it. Thank you for your time. And thank you to the American Acupuncture Council for this opportunity to share with all of you. I look forward to seeing you next time.

 

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Benefits of Ancillary Services in Facial Acupuncture

 

 

I’ll be speaking to you today about is treatments ancillary treatments that you can add in to your facial acupuncture practice.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gellis. I am an acupuncture physician practicing in Florida, and I teach facial and cosmetic acupuncture classes internationally. Can you go to the first slide?

What I’ll be speaking to you today about is treatments ancillary treatments that you can add in to your facial acupuncture practice. A little bit about me, I am currently on faculty at Yo San University in the doctoral program. . And before that I taught at the Maryland University of Integrative Health as a clinic supervisor and adjunct faculty from 2003 to 2021.

I have been teaching facial and cosmetic acupuncture classes since around 2005. So when we’re talking. ancillary services. The things that are included in that, and this is not a comprehensive list, but they can be facial cupping and guha and microneedling and red light. . So I’m going to talk a just briefly about those topics and why you might wanna add them, and just a little bit about.

First we have to think about our facial anatomy. So when we’re doing cosmetic acupuncture, we’re really working a little bit on the skin level, but and a little bit on the fascia, but more on the muscles and The different meridians that help to lift and tone the face itself. And we’re also doing body treatment, so we’re working on a deeper level to help the face to look better because we’re working with all the organs and as we get, if you think about the face there’s a lot of things.

Affect the way our face looks. Our facial expressions can affect the quality and the appearance of our face. As we get older, our tissues in our face be, can become more stiff and inflexible, and this can affect the appearance of our face. The retaining ligaments can loosen, things, can sag. Also the fat layers on our face can move down and settle in different areas.

And since fat is one of the things that gives our face is volume and it descends really being able to work on the skin level, the muscle level, even the bone level. Can have the best effect on what your patients will notice during their cosmetic acupuncture treatments. So the first ancillary treatment is facial cupping.

So facial cupping is designed to bring blood and chi and circulation to the skin and the muscles just like cupping on the body. and it helps to stimulate the blood, get it into the tissues, to help the tissues to be more healthy, and it also helps to stimulate collagen and elastin production because when you’re stimulating the blood circulation, it helps with the fibro fibroblasts production, which helps in the production of collagen and elast.

and those fibroblasts are what help to thicken the skin because our skin thins as we get older and it keeps our skin looking more youthful. So facial cupping can help to lift and tone the face can help on the skin level, but it’s really a way to get that good healthy blood out to our.

Facial cupping can help with the fine lines. It helps to relax any tight facial muscles because what can happen is our facial muscles through overuse like our forehead muscles, the muscles around our lips, the abicus oris, they. Tight. And then the skin that’s over the muscle can become very wrinkled. So by relaxing the facial muscles relaxing any fascia that has become stiff, It can help the way the skin looks.

Also, facial cupping can move lymph through the face, and that means fluids and toxins down into the lymphatic system. And this can also help with issues like inflammation, like redness, such as rosacea and. Facial cupping helps to strengthen the vascular integrity of the face so you don’t end up with as many of those little spider veins and a lot of the discoloration that you can get as you age.

This is what facial cups look like. The ones that I like are the small rubber bell, a rubber ball with the glass bell cups. The glass is nice and smooth. It doesn’t harbor bacteria. It can be cleaned easily. It glides really well on the face and these small, specially designed cups. Are very easy to squeeze, unlike some of the other cups that you can purchase where it’s really hard to squeeze them.

This is a couple of slides. Taken from my facial cupping class. Facial cupping should start with a lymphatic drainage. You never wanna drag the cup down the neck, always suction and release. Then you go under the clavicle and into the lymphatic drainage area. . My classes are designed for acupuncturists, but can be attended by other individuals.

As far as health professionals, as long as you understand where the landmarks are.

So here’s a slide where I’m showing opening the entry exit points on the face, which can allow the greater movement of chi throughout the meridians and. . This is an example of how you might suction a cup on an acupuncture point and then drag it up to another acupuncture point up to Glo gallbladder two to help to lift the jawline area, and then suction and releasing down the neck and into the lymphatic drainage area.

Facial guha is really fabulous when you’re dealing with facial fascia, and it can really sculpt the face. The tools that I like are shaped like this. and AccuLift Skincare has two tools and two cups that come in a kit, which I really like. But when you’re looking at Guha tools, you want ones, I like the ones that are multipurpose and Jade is very much a part of our medicine.

J Jada’s very tonifying to the skin. and when Jade touches the skin, it creates an electromagnetic field and it helps to bring the blood and the sheet out to the skin. And it has, this particular tool has, as I mentioned, it’s multipurpose, it has corners for massaging different points. It has a nice. Flat edge when you’re working around the temporalis.

It has a smaller flat edge for under the jaw, and then this great notch here for working along the jaw line and along the cheekbone.

I had mentioned facial faia. The face is the only place on our body where our muscle system is connected to our skin, which is why we can move the skin on. Our face, and this happens through this smash layer. It is a superficial, muscular, upper neurotic system, which helps to amplify our expressions out to our skin, which allows us to move our lips and our forehead and our cheeks without moving any bones at all.

And. What can happen as we age is fascia, which is like this very fibrous layer if you’ve ever. Looked at raw chicken or raw meat, and you pull the meat away from the bone. That’s what fascia is. And nerves can get trapped in between the muscle and the fascia, and it can prevent the signal from getting out to the muscle.

And so our facial expressions cannot. Illuminated and it can also cause tightening and a pulling down of different areas of the face, especially in the cheeks around the jaws. By doing gua, you can help to release some of these BA adhesions, which can cause ent.

So here’s just a quick cross section. You have the smash layer and you have bone, and you have your maier muscle and you can see the nerve and how if the fascia is in the way, it can entrap the nerve.

This is an example of doing facial guha here. I’m using the tools underneath to help with. The that kind of waddle people can get underneath their chin, really moving any stagnation, helping to tone the digastric muscles and really work on that whole girdle that lifts up. Underneath the chin. And then in this bottom slide I have this bottom photo.

I’m using the u part of the tool to really sculpt along the jawline, help to break up any fossil adhesions to actually working on the bone level. And you can stimulate with the corners different acupuncture points as you go along.

Is also really wonderful for releasing tension down the back of the neck because everything that goes on in the back of the neck is going to affect the face. The back of the neck is connected to the face through. Occipital frontalis muscle, and also the connections on the temporalis. All of these things work together to halt the face up and it by treating the back of the neck, you c you’re also treating the front of the neck.

A lot of people are getting. At young ages, lines in the front of their neck from keeping their head down. Their trapezius muscles are getting elongated. They’re having a tightening in through the s e m and the platysma. And all of this can affect the way the neck ages both in the back and the front and the way the face ages and can also affect headaches in the back and well all over the head, which can affect the way your face looks.

If you are in pain and you’re making that facial expression, eventually it will get lodged in your. Next I wanna talk a little bit about microneedling. And microneedling is a big topic. It’s a hot topic in cosmetic acupuncture, and this is a picture of a microneedling device and. Microneedling helps to stimulate collagen.

It’s a very much a skin level treatment. It helps our body to produce its own collagen and it also helps serum any serum that you put on the face to be absorbed. , some of the benefits of microneedling are there’s very little downtime and it’s low risk, very effective. It produces collagen naturally.

You don’t have to inject anything into the face, can help with stretch marks scars, acne scars, any sort of depressed scar. It can help with hair loss and wonderful for neck wrinkles, lip wrinkles. It’s comfortable. It very little pain and the results are very long lasting. Once you’ve done a series of treatments, the results can last up to five years.

The way it works is when the microneedles go into the skin through the epidermis, the cur keratinocytes, produce keratin. And this happens right in the base layer of the epidermis. And when you’re microneedling. It helps to produce these fibroblasts which meet up with Venus and arterial capillaries, and they form together and they create new collagen.

And collagen is what gives our skin it’s. Its plumpness, its overall glow collagen is what keeps the ca skin smooth and helps it to snap back and to look more youthful and more healthy. . Now, there’s a lot of different types of microneedling devices. There are derma rollers, and these are great for at home.

If you do it gently, you could do it every day, every other day just to help your serums absorb. Or it can be done more deeply. And then you would only wanna do it every couple of weeks or less, depending on your age and your skin. . I sometimes offer this as a service in my treatment space, but typically I sell drummer rollers to my patients to use in between their cosmetic acupuncture treatments.

Microneedle pens are wonderful as well, and. They are electric devices. I do not recommend your patients do this at home. I recommend that they come into your treatment space and that you buy a good high quality microneedling device that is at least 18,000 RPMs and has a cord and batteries, and then you get trained.

By someone who’s registered with the American Acupuncture Council. AAC has been great. They have approved this AccuLift pen for use in the treatment room. And coming down here, this is a glass vial with gold needles on a little roller, and you can put CRM right in this, and you can do micro with that.

This is called a HRA roller. As I mentioned, safety is really important and. , if you can go to me, I’ll show the difference between some of the, so there’s different types of cartridges when you buy a microneedle pen. The best are the bayonet cartridges, and some of them have a double locking system.

Lemme see if I can get this really. Close. Wait a minute, . There we go. So this is like a double bayonet, maybe I’m too close. And it has a two, it locks in two places and then it has two holes on the outside to lock in to your microneedle pen. This has. , 12 needles. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 12 needles in it.

And the the AccuLift pen has a triple bayonet and I don’t know if you can see that it has three. I’m trying to get this in the screen here. , I don’t know. There we go. It has a triple locking mechanism and it also, so three bayonets instead of two. And then it also has a three holes here.

So it has three attachment points on the. and 16 needles and there’s many different microneedle pens out there. I recommend that when you’re choosing one, you do a little research and see which one works best for you. The anti backflow is very important. You want a cartridge that cuz these, the way the cartridges work is the needles go in and out.

And when they’re going in and out, you don’t want the fluid to go back into the pen. You shouldn’t have any bleeding, but you still don’t want. any sort of fluid getting into the pen. That’s why the triple locking mechanism is really great. Okay, we are gonna talk about red light therapy quickly, and this is another ancillary treatment that you can add on to your facial acupuncture.

And l e d lights are wonderful. They’ve been used since I, I think that’s like the 1960s or seventies. NASA started using them to help with wound healing and with different things with the astronauts. L e d light interacts with the cells of our skin and it helps them to produce new collagen and elastin and is really great for things like acne scars and skin dyschromia or discoloration.

And there’s a picture of me laying under mine and. . So these little tiny lights, these light emitting diodes it was the 1990s, I’m sorry, I said the 1960s. The 1990s, NASA began studying l e d effects in promoting wound healing. And l e d therapy was approved by the FDA for wound healing and for skin rejuvenation and helping tissues.

So when we’re talking about l e d lights they have several benefits. They can help with inflammation bone healing, swelling, and neuropathy. , and as I mentioned, wound healing. But for our purposes in our treatment room with cosmetic acupuncture, we really wanna think about things like collagen production, wrinkles hairy growth, skin dyschromia, and.

Tightening the skin. So the red light is the most powerful. This is where you get the skin. Rejuvenation helps the oxygen content in the blood and can help with pain. That has to do with some superficial inflammation. , the yellow light is great for increasing oxygen in the cell and helps with spots and removing pigment.

The green light really will target the dark pigment, broken capillary sun, sunspots, and like overall skin dyschromia like melasma. The blue light is great for killing bacteria, so you can use it before you do a microneedling treatment, which is wonderful. And, but the blue light can be a little stimulating.

People, they sit in front of the blue light. If they’re depressed, it can really help your energy level. So if you start out with a blue light in your treatment room, it’s nice to end on the red light, and that can help the with the person’s overall just relaxation. And then these particular lamps you can do a combination of red and yellow, red and blue, or all four lights.

So if you have any further questions, you can go to facial acupuncture classes.com on contact us or go to facial acupuncture on. Social and can either private message me or I have a group on Facebook called Facial Acupuncture. So I hope you enjoy today’s talk and I look forward to seeing you next time.

 

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LED Light Therapy – Michelle Gellis

 

 

Today I’m going to be talking about L E D light. and the benefits and some of the contraindications. So if you can go to the first slide.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gellis. I am a board certified acupuncture physician, and I teach facial acupuncture classes internationally. Today I’m going to be talking about l e d light. and the benefits and some of the contraindications. So if you can go to the first slide.

So this is a little bit about me. I’m a formal former faculty member and clinic supervisor at the Maryland University of Integrative Health, and I’m currently on the doctoral FA faculty at Usan University, and I’ve been published several times in the Journal of Chinese. , my area of expertise is facial acupuncture, both for cosmetic but also for neuromuscular facial conditions.

And at the end of the presentation, I have some information about some of the classes that I teach. So what is l e d skin rejuvenation or l e d light therapy actually? So l e d light therapy is using light through light emitting diodes or LEDs to affect the skin and the body in. So these l e d lights and you can see a picture of a light device here.

These l e d lights can stimulate the cells in our body to do different things. They can produce collagen and this can help to rejuvenate the skin. And it can also. help with a lot of other things in addition to helping with skin concerns. So LEDs are different from lasers and I p l therapies that are other therapies that are used for the.

Because this does not use thermal energy. It doesn’t damage the skin in any way. There’s no downtime and there’s no trauma to the tissue, which is really nice for our patients. And this particular device, which. is a freestanding device. I like this type of device because you can move it around the table.

You don’t have to somehow prop it over your patient and you can get it as close or as far away as you would like, and it will function on any body part. So these panels, they of move, like open and closed to get to smaller parts and larger parts of the body. So what are some of the benefits, other benefits of l e d light therapy?

L e d light therapy has. Approved by the FDA for anti-aging, tightening and toning of the skin, helping the skin’s elasticity, improving pigment like dark spots, and any sort of molas, things of that nature. It helps our immune system because it targets the mitochondria of the. , which enhances our immune system.

It also helps with hair regrowth. You may have seen some of those caps and different types of devices. People, the red light devices that people put on their heads to help to regrow hair, and it also can help with inflammation and for things like joint pain, for concerns like arthritis. and the way, one of the ways that it helps with skin is it stimulates the fibroblasts to increase collagen production and it also increases the production of melatonin in the body.

So it’s great for. It stimulates the lymphatic system, so it helps with any sort of inflammation that may be going on. And also cell repair. So if you’re doing cosmetic acupuncture, You can include this with the cosmetic acupuncture treatment and it can help to with puffiness and also to reduce the incidence of bruising.

And because it does work with the mitochondria of the cell, it can help with the tissue. Injury tissue regrowth, if there’s been any sort of trauma. And again, it can also help with inflammation. So the device that I was just showing you is made it’s being sold by ocu. And they they have a website.

It’s called AccuLift skincare.com and Mossa OMS will also be carrying it. And it has four different types of light. It has a red light, which has a wavelength of 640 nanometers, and that is the most powerful penetrating is the red light, and that is for pretty much everything. It will take care of the skin cell, rejuvenation, oxygen content in the blood circulation, aches and pains, and promoting the collagen.

So you would use the red light definitely. If you were treating the skin. , the yellow light helps with oxygen in the skin, also circulation, red spots, red face. It’s great for rosacea and it helps to remove pigment in the skin. That’s unwanted, like dark spots, red spots. The green light is good for dark circles.

Also pigmentation issues, broken capillaries, sunspots, so it will target some of the red in the skin and if the person has over irritated skin. And then the blue light. Helps to kill bacteria and it’s wonderful to use, like if you’re doing any sort of microneedling, it helps to kill bacteria on the skin ahead of time.

Also, the lights can be combined, so you can have red and blue, yellow, and red. or you can turn all four colors on, and this will help with different types of concerns. So a little bit about infrared light. So this, the light that this device emits is a near infrared. So the T D P lamps that we have, they get hot that is far infrared, and these lamps they don’t get hot like a far infrared.

The light spectrum that we’re working with is mainly in here. However, when you combine the lights, you can get a little further into the near infrared. , which helps to go down a little deeper when you are trying to deal with aches and pains and muscle issues. So the red light. The near infrared red light again, it stimulates collagen, fibroblasts, and it does have some anti-inflammatory action.

And as I mentioned this has all been approved by the fda and we can use them in our treatment room for all these different things, including. Stimulating the mitochondria of the cell. And this is a link to one study and there have been many studies that have been done on. Red Light therapy.

The nice thing about red light therapy is there’s no risk of burning the skin, and you can treat a large area within a very short period of time. A typical treatment is between 20 and 30 minutes, and there’s nothing special you need to do afterwards. There’s no downtime. The person doesn’t have to stay out of the sun or put any special products on their skin.

It is safe for many different types of skin and , it’s completely pain free. It’s very comfortable. It’s actually very relaxing. It’s easy to use. The machines are easy to use. The Accu Lift device comes with step by step manual and also video training and. , it really does have a wide range of uses in the treatment room.

Back pain, hip pain, leg pain lots of different things that you can use it for in addition to just rejuvenating the skin. Here, here is a picture of me. You could see I’m wearing the same shirt right before the presentation. I thought I would just chill out under my red light and it’s very relaxing.

It has a timer on it. I don’t think I have a picture of the controls, but the controls are easy. You turn it on and then there is a timer. You can set it from zero to 30 minutes. And power I always turn it all the way. and then what color light you want to use. You just cycle through whether you wanna do red, blue, green, yellow, or a combination.

So there’s different seven different settings. Red, blue, green yellow and red. Red and blue, and then all four. And. It’s on wheels, so you can just move it right around your patient, which is nice. And when you’re done, you can just wipe it with a cavity, wipe something that is safe, and that way if your patient coughs or sneezes or anything it will remain clean.

and it stores up pretty small. You could just stick it right in the corner. And the other thing is, if you’re doing cosmetic acupuncture, you can put your needles in and then you just place this right over the needles. And you can see with these adjustment knobs, you can lay it, you can have it so it’s completely flat like this, and you can put it right up against.

The person I don’t know. I did not include the contraindications, but there are some contraindications. You would never wanna use the device on someone who had cancer, skin cancer, any kind of cancer, because it does stimulate cell growth. You don’t want to use it on. People who are pregnant any sort of open wounds, anything like that.

But this is all included in the training. This is really just an overview on the devices . That’s pretty much all I have to say today about red light therapy. These are some of the other classes that I offer. I haven’t even added the red light therapy class on here, but I teach cosmetic acupuncture certification.

I have a, an advanced certification, which is essentially all of these classes. I also just have a, like a basic five module certification. I teach facial cupping, facial guha, facial derma rolling, and skincare microneedling, both with a microneedle pen and derma rolling. I also have to meet, and these are all C E U N C A O.

California and Florida approved CEU classes. I also teach ethics and safety within facial acupuncture treating neuromuscular facial conditions self-care for acupuncturists and anatomy of expression. . So that’s my topic today and let me move this out of the way. Oops. If you are interested in learning more, definitely visit the AAC channel.

They have lots and lots of instructional video. And I wanna say thank you to the AAC for the opportunity today to spend some time with all of you.

 

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Microneedling for Hair Loss

 

 

So what I’m going to talk about is the different topics I’m going to speak about today are the different types of hair loss and how microneedling is within our scope of practice of Chinese medicine, and then how it can stimulate hair growth.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gellis. I am an acupuncture physician and I am the founder and president of Facial Acupuncture classes. I would like to thank the American Acupuncture Council for this opportunity to speak to you today about microneedling for hair. Can we go to the first slide?

So what I’m going to talk about is The different topics I’m going to speak about today are the different types of hair loss and how microneedling is within our scope of practice of Chinese medicine, and then how it can stimulate hair growth. And some protocols for microneedling the Scalp. So I teach a one hour CEU class on this topic.

So you you’re getting like a little snippet, but I wanted to do a nice overview for you on microneedling for hair loss. So a little bit about me. Taught at the Maryland University of Integrative Health from 2003 to 2021, and I am currently on the doctoral. I’m on faculty at the doctoral program at Yoan University, and as I mentioned, I have been teaching facial and cosmetic acupuncture classes internationally since 2005.

There are many different types of hair loss and in general terms, some are due to stress or illness and So I’m just gonna go through the like the Western medical differentiations of different types of hair loss, and then we’ll talk about how we differentiate in Chinese medicine, the different types of hair loss.

So in Western medicine we have male and female pattern. This is Androgenetic alopecia, and this is the most common form of hair loss that we see for men. It’s either right on the top here or in the front, and in some cases both. Also there’s telegen. Hair loss where large numbers of the follicles on the scalp stay in the resting phase.

But so we have different phases with our hair growth. Some rests, some grows, and. If we stay in the resting phase too long, your hair falls out, but then new hair doesn’t grow in, and this is typically due to some sort of a hormonal imbalance, thyroid childbirth, or a shock to the system, like a surgery, a fever.

We’re seeing this with covid. People lost their hair with c. Sometimes it is from a vitamin or a mineral deficiency, and so that’s algen. And then there’s antigen, and this is from a medical treatment such as chemotherapy where your hair just suddenly falls out. Almost, it’s almost like it spontaneously falls out due to medical treat treatment.

There can be autoimmune conditions like rat at a rat. Da , I’m having trouble saying it. The slides are small, but that is an autoimmune condition. And tinia cap is ringworm, which is fairly uncommon in Western society, but it does happen. And then there’s scarring, alopecia, and there’s several different categories.

Of this. There can also be hair shaft abnormalities and hypori, which is another type of hair loss in tcm. We divide sudden hair loss. Into four categories, and that would be sudden hair loss due to blood, heat, and wind. And we see this more commonly in adolescents that are tending towards because Adolescents tend towards blood heat, which is going to generate wind, and the signs and symptoms might be some itching, right?

Irritation from the heat. There might be a headache. The tongue is gonna be red with a thin coating, and the pulse is thin and wiry and rapid. As with any. Heat condition and so the treatment is to clear the heat and the wind and we can also have sudden hair loss with a chi and blood deficiency pattern.

this would be after a sudden illness or postpartum because of chi and blood cannot ascend up to the hair. And so the treatment for that will be deify, the chi and blood. . Also, we can have gradual hair loss due to damp heat. Typically this is from dietary type conditions. People have damp heat from eating diet that would generate that in the body.

And the scalp would be greasy and sticky, and you might get some itching and the hair could fall out in clusters. The tongue is gonna be red with a greasy coat, and the pulse will be slippery and rapid, and the treatment would be to clear the dampness and the heat. We can also have a gradual hair loss.

Due to a liver and kidney deficiency pattern, and we see this most likely in middle age. And so this would be the kidney deficiency type of hair loss that is most common, and that would lead to some of the male and female pattern. Boldness that we would see, and the hair will be dull, sometimes yellowish white, and they will have typically typical kidney deficiency patterns, like a sore back knees, dizziness, and red tongue.

The pulse is gonna be thin and rapid, and the treatment would be to nourish the liver and the kidneys. Another reason for hair loss in Chinese medicine would be mental and emotional disorders, such as stress, grief, and worry, which can cause the hair to sin and fall out. When we’re thinking about microneedling in Chinese medicine we tend to think of microneedling as something that is more of a modern technique.

But the Chinese have used needles to beautify the skin for thousands of years. And in Chinese practice it’s referred to as Ma Huang, which translates to beautiful appearance. And so using needles to rejuvenate the skin has been used for Thousands of years. And although the tools that they used and the terminology was slightly different, microneedling, which is also known as collagen, induction therapy, is almost identical to what we might do with a seven star hammer or even when we’re stimulating our channels with a channel roller.

Surrounding the dragon to treat scars and but using a micro needle, derma roller, or a derma pen. And I’ve brought one with me today for you, toc. So this is a ACU lift micro pen. There are many manufacturers of micro needle pens. But these devices you turn them on and they have different speeds that you can set the pen at, and then the there’s a.

Guide right here. And let’s see, I gotta go in the right direction up. And as you can see, as I twist the the little dial, the needles, these little needles where am I? Go, come out, you can see the little needles there. And when the pen is on, they vibrate up and down like this, and they penetrate the skin.

So

when we’re using acupuncture, For to reduce hair loss or to increase hair growth using micro needle pen or der helps to reduce the inflammation that might exist in the hair follicle. It also increases the flow of blood to the skin and to the hair follicles. allows any nutrients that are in your blood to go out to the surface, and it helps to stimulate hair growth.

Acupuncture, full body acupuncture will help to reduce some of the stress, which as we saw is one of the causes for hair loss and acupuncture enhances your immune system. So if part of the reason that your hair is falling, Is because of an immune deficiency or something that’s stressing your immune system.

Doing full body acupuncture along with microneedling can help balance the hormones. Enhance your blood flow, enhance your immune system and allow your hair to naturally grow. Little picture of what it, like a cross section of what it looks like when the needles go in. So what does microneedling.

Actually do. It does two things. One, it stimulates your body’s own collagen production, and hair is made out of collagen and elastin, and it also opens the skin up. So when you do microneedling, , it should be done very superficially. It should not be done very deep. There shouldn’t be any bleeding, and it allows for the absorption of any products that you put.

On your skin. So if you’re using some sort of a hair growth stimulating product and you put it on your scalp, our scalps are pretty thick and it can be difficult for the product to get in. But if you put the product on and then you do the microneedling, it allows it to go down. Pass the outer layer of your scalp and get into where the blood supply is and allows the product to be picked up by your skin.

Here’s a few photos. There have been a lot of studies done, and I’m not gonna go through all of them. I do have a few references and there’s a bunch. My website. So ACU Lift has a website, and on the website there’s information about microneedling and different. Studies that have been done on microneedling, but this is just some pictures before and after pictures for microneedling that were done by a company that makes microneedle pens.

As I mentioned, I’m not gonna read through all of this, but clinical studies that have been done on microneedling and showing how much more effective microneedling. Was then even using minoxidil, which is currently known commonly known as Rogan. And some other studies that were done showing the body points that were used in conjunction with the micro needle pen and.

So you can flip through these as I mentioned on the website, and the protocol is that you would clean your patient’s scalp with either an alcohol spray or some witch hazel. You would let that dry. You can put numbing cream on the scout. And then put a shower cap on it because the heat will help it to absorb.

And you definitely wanna use numbing cream because microneedling, the scalp can be very sensitive. Any, if you’ve ever pulled just like one here, you know how. Sensitive. Our scallops can be once the cap is on with the numbing cream. If you have an l e d one of those l e D lights, you can set that on blue and that helps to kill an bacteria.

And then you. Insert any body points that you were going to use to treat the different conditions that we spoke about. You would wait about 15 minutes. You come back in, you wipe off the numbing cream, and then you put whatever serum you’re going to use. Aiff does make a hair serum. And before you would choose any prescription serums, your I.

Strongly recommend contacting a medical professional eye, the hair serum. I use on my patients that I sell is all organic and vegan and very few ingredients, but it’s all very good, even just on its own to help with hairy growth. And you don’t need to set the pen. Needles too long. So usually what I’ll do is I set it at 0.25 or 0.5, and then you work from the hairline back.

You can either go in a linear direction or you can use a stamping. So you can either stamp or you can work straight back. It really depends on how much hair they. Let’s say it was someone like myself, their hair is thinning a little bit like maybe right here, and you just wanted to get in there and help to stimulate.

You would be better off doing a stamping motion than trying to run the pan. But even if you’re doing a stamping motion, you start at the hairline and you work your way. Back. And after you’ve done that, you, if you have an l e d light, you can put it on red, leave it on there for about five to 10 minutes to allow the serum to really penetrate and for the blood flow to increase and.

Then you would take out your body points and you’re done. I always sell some serum to my patients and tell them to use it twice a day. And I’ve had some really great success with myself and with my patients. Trying to, at this spot me right here I had lost a lot of hair during covid. I don’t know if I was pulling my hair outta my head or what, but had started.

Some hair thinning in that area, and it’s pretty much all grown back now, which is great. So the serum that I’m talking about, can you pull my spot up? It this bottle looks a little larger. I, the bottle itself is I think it’s two ounces but it’s Very easily absorbed light oily serum.

And that’s a picture of the pen. And just real quick, the courses that I offer, I have a facial acupuncture basic certification. I also teach facial cupping in Guacs, Derma Rolling, and skin care microneedling. I teach a two part course on treating neuromuscular facial conditions. I am a classically trained wisely five element acupuncturist, so I have a course, a two part course on the anatomy of expressions about our emotions.

And how our emotions can affect our appearance and vice versa. Also, facial acupuncture, self care for acupuncturists. I have an advanced techniques course for those stubborn to treat conditions. I also have a safety course, and I’ve just added an ethics course so you can meet your se safety and ethics.

Requirements and I also have a comprehensive advanced certificate class, which is self-paced with monthly optional zoom meetings that we do. And there’s also a live hands on component. I do travel. As I mentioned internationally teaching hands on classes you ever get a chance, get it on my website, facial acupuncture classes.com, and I am available on Facebook.

I have a Facebook group for questions and answers and should we open it up for questions here or, If anyone has any questions now, I’m happy to take them. I cannot see the chat window though. Okay. So next time the American Acupuncture Council will be hosting Poney Chaing, and that will be on Friday.

Thank you again to AAC for this opportunity and I hope you’ve found this beneficial.

 

 

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Facial Fascia: Appearance and Function

 

 

And I am going to talk to you today about facial fascia and what it is and how it can affect your facial acupuncture treatments and how it can affect your patient’s appear.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gillis. I am an acupuncture physician and I teach facial and cosmetic acupuncture classes internationally. And I am going to talk to you today about facial fascia and what it is and how it can affect your facial acupuncture treatments and how it can affect your patient’s appear.

So I wanna thank the American Acupuncture Council for this opportunity, and I need to see the first slide.

So what is facial fascia? That is going to be the first thing we talk about today, and after that we will discuss how it affects your facial appearance. and the movement of your face. So it’s not just about cosmetic, but also how your face functions, and then some treatment modalities, things we can do in order to affect the function of the face by treating the fascia.

So facial fascia is composed of two layers, and the first is the superficial facial fascia, and that is On the outer layer, and that is, it’s right underneath your skin and it helps to support your face and hold everything up, and it’s responsible for giving you a youthful appearance and. It also can carry a lot of tension in it and restrict circulation to the face so things can get trapped, whether it’s lymphatic fluid or blood.

And even some of the superficial nerves. Then we have the deep fascia layer, and that kind of forms a girdle and it is called the mass layer, the superficial muscular epi neurotic system. So the superficial layer itself. Has the superficial fascia itself has two layers. It has the outer layer, which is this kind of fatty layer, and then we have the mass layer, which is right here and.

That is what allows us to make facial expressions. It takes the nerve impulses from deep and sends them out to the muscle, which then translates out to our skin.

So the superficial. Fasha layer is what is responsible for our facial expressions. And the deep fascia layer, which includes the fascia of the temporalis because the temporalis is connected to the face the parotid fascia, which goes down into the neck. The periosteum, which works around the part of the skull that connects to the face.

and the septum, the area around the orbit or the eye area. And this is where the deep fascia exists on the face. So here’s a. Pictorial representation of a piece of bone and a muscle and the skin. And the reason why this is important is because our face is the only part of our body where the skin is connected.

To the skin layer is connected to the bone through muscle, which is why you can move the skin on your face without having to move. Any part of your face so you don’t have to move joint in order to move the skin on your face, everywhere else on your body, if you wanna move the skin, one of your body parts has to move.

The skin can’t move Separate from the the body part.

So one of the things that can happen is, so here’s the bone and here’s the fat and the muscle and the skin. And what can happen is, so as the muscle contracts, the skin gets pulled towards the bone and we can get. Kind of wrinkling of the skin, right? If you smile, if you raise your eyebrows, if you pull your eyebrows together, if you purse your lips right, you can purse your lips without having to move any bone at all.

Just by moving the muscle, the ais ORs, and what can happen is, We can get these fossil adhesions, which are like scar tissue. They can happen as we age. They can happen through injury, they can happen through overuse or underuse. And it’s this very fibrous collagen fibers. It’s like if you think about, if you have like a chicken.

And you pull the chicken away from the bone. There’s that layer. It almost looks like really a strong cobwebs, and those fibers can. Trap nerves and blood and other things. And they can cause these adhesions where it can prevent the full expression on our face of different facial expressions, the full movement and.

Like if an individual perhaps had a stroke and things, or Bell’s palsy and things don’t move for a long time, then you have to physically get this area moving because of these muscle adhesions that can form. So here’s the bone. Here’s a piece of bone, and here’s the fascia, and here is a nerve, which as you could see, could get trapped in the fascia and it could prevent the signaling so the muscle won’t even.

The signal that it needs to move because the nerve is trapped or it can reduce. The ability of the muscle to move well, and it can also restrict blood flow. You can see there’s veins that could also get trapped. So here’s a picture of someone with Bell’s Palsy. They’re making a facial expression with the right side of their face, but the left side of their face isn’t moving.

At all, and part of this is due to nerve damage, but it can also be from entrapment

and wrinkles. When we think of wrinkles, we think of something that happens as we age, and in many cases it can be from sun damage, it can be from just the skin getting older, but also if you habitually make an expression and the skin is attached to the fascia. If that fascia is restricted at all, then you can end up with these deep wrinkles.

We see it a lot in people’s far heads and even sometimes around the eyes with crow’s feet or the lips. And also with jowling. , and I’m gonna talk about a couple of ways that we can help with this, but sometimes wrinkles and sagging are reversible just by doing things to the fascia layer. So here we have an example of forehead wrinkles.

Perhaps this person made the expression where they raised their eyebrows a lot. Also, this is when I said jowling. This is what is referred to as a jowl, and it can happen through the aging process. Things loosen and they become a fixed into a new position. Sometimes it’s from excess weight on the face, sometimes it’s from habitually frowning.

And When I was young, my mother used to say to me, Don’t make that face. It’s going to stay that way. And there was actually a lot of truth to that. A lot of our facial expressions get etched on our face over time.

So what are some of the treatment modalities that we can use in order to affect this fascia? On the face. One very effective treatment is facial cupping. Now, facial cupping is something it’s a skill that you would need to learn. It’s not like cupping on the back. You don’t want to try to use your glass cups and cup the face the way you would’ve back, or a neck or a shoulder or a.

Facial cupping uses small cups. and they look like this. And you would use these small cups and oil and you would glide these cups across the skin. You don’t park the cups and you do it in such a way that encourages lymphatic drainage. And works with the anatomy of the face. And this is a cupping set that is made by Oculus Skincare.

And so there’s a slightly larger cup and a smaller cup for different types of wrinkles and. Rubber part is very easy to squeeze so you can squeeze and move and release and squeeze and move and release, and really keep that chi and energy going. Facial Guha is also another technique that we can use.

And here are some facial guha tools. You can see that they are these are made out of Jade and they’re specially shaped to work around the gel. The cheeks to work along the temporalis and underneath the chin, across the clavicle. Lots of places where we can get these adhesions and by. This kind of physical movement of doing the cupping and then the guha afterwards.

You help to keep the lymphatic system of the face moving, the blood and the chi moving, and also to really get in there and break up those fas adhesions, especially with the guha tool on the forehead. You can spread the wrinkles and you can really get in there and break up a lot of that tension and that tight fascia.

So this is a picture of me just doing some gua along the jaw, jawline, sculpting the face, helping to lift everything up.

And the next technique that we can use, which is very beneficial for submuscular needle, for treating facial fascia is submuscular needling. and this is a technique where you would work on different areas of the face. And I teach a whole class just on submuscular needling, and it involves taking your needles and getting.

Underneath the muscle. So you’re really getting underneath these memetic muscles. I’ve lost my mouse. Where’d they go? You get underneath the memetic muscles. And you’re going to needle right through and down. And this can help get into the superficial fascia and then into some of the deeper fascia depending on which part of the face you’re working on.

And you would insert a few needles. Underneath the muscle, depending on what part of the face you’re working on. So I have a quick video that I’ll show in a moment, but you can use this to work. Underneath the mace here, you can use this to work along the attachment points for the pla. You can work into and underneath the anterior digastric.

You can work underneath the corrugator muscles. You can work underneath the frontals muscle. Pretty much any muscle were on the face where you have access to the margins of the muscle you can get underneath there. And this can really effectively break up some of those fossil adhesions, which is really quite wonderful.

And let’s see. I don’t know if you’ll be able to hear this, but you can see it and I can talk through it.

In needling, the frontalis muscle, the. Way that you isolate the muscle is you ask your patient to raise their eyebrows. Go ahead and raise your eyebrows. Okay? And then, so this is the frontals muscle and you can find the border of the frontals muscle. And the way that you needle is you’re going to go.

From the origin to the insertion, so you find the borders up here in the insertion is here. And typically what I do is I will put in usually three needles, and then you get right underneath the muscle lateral on either side and. I will put in two needles on the medial side, and when you’re needling, what’s important is that the angle of the tube is the angle that the needle’s gonna go in.

So if you go like this, it’s gonna go too deep. If you go like this, it’s going to be too shallow. I use. My thumb or a finger to help to guide the needle. So you wanna keep your fingers out of the way when you’re actually inserting. That way you can get to the correct depth right underneath the muscle.

That’s lateral side. Then you’re going to do the medial side, and usually two needles. Suffice. And I do the one side and then I do the other side and I’m using half inch noodles. You can use one inch noodles depending on how big your patient forehead is, so you just get all the way down underneath the muscle.

And isolate the muscle and needle right underneath it, and this, you would just leave the needles in for anywhere from 15 minutes to a half an hour. And this is especially helpful. Let’s say your patient has Bell’s Palsy or some sort of facial paralysis. You can do it on both sides. You can do it on one side, wherever the muscles are affected.

This is just a list of some of the classes that I teach facial and cosmetic acupuncture, facial cupping. A lot of what we talked about today is from my treating neuromuscular facial neuromuscular facial conditions class. I do some self care for acupuncturists safety ethics, microneedling. And a lot of the techniques that we use for cosmetic acupuncture can also be beneficial for treating neuromuscular facial conditions like osis.

Or if someone’s had a stroke, TMJ and vice versa. A lot of times when you’re working with a neuromuscular facial condition that your patient might have, it also helps to benefit the Movement of their face and therefore their skin will look healthier and more vibrant. So I think that’s everything.

I wanted to thank the American Acupuncture Council again, and next week we have Matt Callison and Brian Lao, and I hope to see you again next.

 

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Cosmetic Acupuncture a Source of Profit

 

 

Today I will be speaking about cosmetic acupuncture as a major source of profit for your practice.

Click here to download the transcript.

Disclaimer: The following is an actual transcript. We do our best to make sure the transcript is as accurate as possible, however, it may contain spelling or grammatical errors.  Due to the unique language of acupuncture, there will be errors, so we suggest you watch the video while reading the transcript.

Hi, my name’s Michelle Gellis. I am an acupuncture physician, and I would like to thank you for coming today to my presentation. And also thank you to the American Acupuncture Council for hosting today’s talk. Today I will be speaking about cosmetic acupuncture as a major source of profit for your practice.

I teach facial and cosmetic acupuncture classes internationally, and some of the questions that I get have nothing to do. The actual act of performing the the techniques, the protocols, the theory of cosmetic or facial acupuncture frequently. A lot of the questions that I get, have to do with setting up your practice marketing.

Timing of treatments and other services in addition to facial and cosmetic acupuncture. So I would like to cover those topics today so I can bring to light some of the lesser talked about topics when it comes to facial and cosmetic acupuncture. So first, I would like to talk about how to set up your cosmetic acupuncture practice.

First and foremost, before you begin practicing cosmetic acupuncture, it is imperative that you get trained now. Many of us feel that because we went to acupuncture school and maybe we had one class on cosmetic acupuncture or we feel comfortable and familiar with treating points on the face. I know I did because I am.

Classically trained five element acupuncturists. We use a lot of face points, but the American acupuncture council and some of the other insurance companies do require specialized training in. Cosmetic acupuncture. And the reason is because of the nature of the structure of the face, the nature of treating the face is heavily vascularized.

And you want to make certain to really understand if you’re going to be doing cosmetic acupuncture, how to be doing it, not just effectively, but safe. many of the things that we see on, especially on social media. Now people have hundreds of needles in the face and not only can that be painful, but it can cause bleeding, bruising, neuropathy.

So it, and it doesn’t have to be that way. You can. Get a wonderful effect from facial and cosmetic acupuncture by using very few needles, if you’re properly trained. So one of the most important things for an effective cosmetic acupuncture practice is to. Trained. And this goes for facial acupuncture as well.

So what’s the difference between facial acupuncture and cosmetic acupuncture? The way I use the terms, when I am talking about facial acupuncture, I am speaking about acupuncture for neuro or neuromuscular or muscular. Facial conditions, things like bells, palsy, TMJ, trigeminal, neuralgia, OSIS. There are a lot of diseases that can affect the face.

And there are treatment protocols which are highly specialized, which involve. Specialized techniques for treating the face. So that is what I consider to be facial acupuncture and cosmetic acupuncture is primarily designed to work with the muscles and the fascia and the skin and the blood supply. and even with cupping in Guha with the fat on the face to help, to reduce sagging wrinkles, skin dyschromia and other things which are more cosmetic, not always due to aging, some of them can be acne or rosacea.

Primarily when we talk about cosmetic acupuncture, what comes to mind is wrinkles, sagging, things of that nature. So getting properly trained is the first thing, if you are setting up your cosmetic acupuncture practice, a good training will include. Paperwork, such as intake forms your specialized contracts.

You will need specialized contracts before you start doing cosmetic acupuncture because you have to set up realistic expectations. You want to outline all the contraindications and precautions upfront. So there’s no surprises on the back end. So good training should involve a set of paperwork. If you’re lucky, you’ll get some marketing tools.

We’ll talk about those in a minute and also an overview of what tools you’ll need and how to use them. And maybe even where to get them. Some classes will. Provide tools for you to use some will sell tools there. Some will include the cost of the tools in your training. When I teach classes, I give my students everything they need to practice.

And then I tell them where they can get any of the tools that they will need moving forward. So what are some of these tools? You will need a good set of tweezers to insert intradermal needles because intradermal needles are an important part of helping to stimulate collagen. ANCA gel can be very beneficial for bruising, bleeding inflammation and knowing how and where and when to apply.

It is very. Q-tips are great for applying pressure. If there is some bleeding, I like it better than a cotton ball. You can apply direct pressure onto the point. And if there is some sort of a swelling occurring than, or little hematoma you can apply direct pressure. And then of course intradermals what type of intradermals to use?

How many, what size, what brand, these are all things that will be important pieces of information. When you set up your cosmetic acupuncture practice, I like using a floor lamp in my treatment room. It will provide adequate lighting so that you can see what you’re doing. The floor lamps that I like are these goose neck lamps, where it’s on the floor, but you can move it this way with a fluorescent bulb.

They are available usually at craft stores and possibly on the internet as well. I like having a. Like a foam, like a Tempur-Pedic type foam cushion on the table because sometimes our tables, although they are comfortable for the short term, our cosmetic patients tend to be on the table for quite a while.

So having that extra layer is really nice, gives it that spa feel without a huge investment. And depending on where you live a table warmer is really nice too, because you will have arm and leg points exposed. In some instances, your patient’s neck and chest might be exposed because they have needles in them.

And of course their head and face will be exposed. And this will. Warm up the body and help the blood flow up to the face. Depending on what style and brand needles you have having an extra garbage PA in your treatment room comes in handy because you’ll be working at their feet at their arms doing your body points.

And then you’ll be sitting at the head of the table working on their face. Having a couple of small trash panels, I found to be very beneficial. A hand mirror so that your patient can look at themselves. They can point out things to you that are areas of concern, or they could look at themselves after the treatment and then a small magnet.

They make these They’re it looks like a pen, but it’s an extendable magnet. If one of the intradermal needles were to fall someplace, instead of using your fingers to pick it up, you could use these small magnets to pick them up.

What about marketing tools? What are some of the things that can really get you noticed? I have had a cosmetic acupuncture practice for almost 20 years. And. I still to this day, have paper brochures explaining cosmetic acupuncture. When I teach classes, I have a marketing kit available and I have pre-made brochures that my students can download.

So they don’t have to design them. They can customize them, however they would like, but having brochures in your waiting area. so that when your, maybe your non-cosmetic patients are waiting for a treatment, they can pick them up. Maybe they won’t read them right in the moment. They’ll take them home.

They’ll look at them and they know what questions to ask. I also have a book in my waiting room and I. Testimonials from my cosmetic acupuncture patients plus before and after photos. And if you’re just starting out, you might say I don’t have any before and after photos again. When you get trained, ask the person who’s training you.

If they have photos to share, this is something I also provide in my classes, so that students. Before they even have foreign afters, at least they have something verifiable that they can show to patients. And also on your website, you should have a separate section just for cosmetic acupuncture and have your S E O your search engine optimization.

Pointing towards this as far as log posts your social media can PO can point to this page directly on your website. The more activity the page has, the more is going to be shown when someone is in your area and they Google. Cosmetic acupuncture or facial acupuncture and whatever city you are in, but the testimonials having them both on your website and in your waiting room can be very powerful.

As far as your social media, you have to know your audience. There are certain. Types of social media that lend themselves more to the videos, certain lend themselves more to stories and sharing, but definitely if you want to focus on facial and cosmetic acupuncture, getting your perform afters, having your videos, having your hashtags, everything set up.

To drive traffic to your TikTok or your Instagram or your Facebook pages is very important. And I know a lot of my younger students left Facebook or were never on Facebook. They say it’s for old people. Many of your clients will be old. So keep that in mind. If you’re not on Facebook, if you’ve never been on Facebook, if you got off of Facebook, you might wanna reconsider having a Facebook page, maybe just for your cosmetic acupuncture piece of your practice and for nothing.

I do have a Facebook group that I run, which has over 8,000 people in it. It’s called facial acupuncture and being connected with other people that are doing what you’re doing helps to it, it raises you up because you learn from each other and it keeps it front and center in your mind. I, when I was first starting out, I used to have spa nights where I would invite my patients who might be interested in cosmetic acupuncture.

I would have some products out. I would talk to them. I would maybe do a little demo or just do a couple of intradermal needles so they could see what it felt like. during that time, you could do giveaways. You could even do an instructional class, let’s say on self care, cupping and Guha. So if you sell cupping and Guha kits your patients can, this is something they can do at home.

In between treatments. You could teach a little class on the Accu lift facial cupping set. It comes with a video for you to learn the self care piece, plus it has directions on the box and this can be a wonderful activity. A lot of my students have either done this for free or charge their patients.

So they might get a free class if they buy a cupping. or they just charge a couple of dollars and they buy a cupping set and they take a class that way packages providing if it’s legal in the state where you practice providing a package. Of let’s say you buy 12 facial acupuncture treatments, and maybe they get a free Derma roller or a free cupping session.

I would not do buy 12, get one free because that is really giving away a lot of your time. But something minimal doesn’t cost you a lot of money, but they feel like they’re getting something you wanna check with your local acupuncture board and make certain you’re allowed to do that. But those are great ideas for cosmetic acupuncture, because the important thing to think about is cosmetic acupuncture is a cash based business.

Insurance will not pay for cosmetic acupuncture. So your patients are paying you cash. You’re not having to go through the time and the trouble of filing for insurance. You get paid right away, right there. And there’s no having to deal with all of that paperwork and paying someone else to file it or.

You could also do patient classes on Derma rolling. Same thing with the facial cupping in Guha, you get some Derma rollers and the OCUL lift Derma rollers are the only Derma rollers. Which are approved by the American acupuncture council for use in the treatment room. You might wanna check those out as well, also converting your current customers.

So you have your clients, they’re coming to see you maybe. Complaining about getting older and they feel like they look tired all the time. Here is a whole audience that you already have people that are already coming to see you, and you can share stories about other. Patients who have the same concern and you help them.

And sometimes I’ll just throw in a couple of extra points to lift a brow or thread or wrinkle so they can get an idea of what it’s like. And typically they love it. Another question I get asked a lot is about the timing of the treatments. People are worried, I’m gonna be spending all this time in my treatment room.

Isn’t it more cost effective for me to just have three or four rooms going at once. And how am I ever gonna make any money doing this? The answer is you have to Once you get your flow going, you can have two rooms going at once 15 minutes to get the needles in. While that patient’s lying on the table for a half an hour, you can go, you can treat another patient.

Then you come back in, you take the needles out, do your cupping in Guha, and then you. Back to the other patient. So you can easily get two rooms going at once and whatever you typically charge for an hour treatment, I would charge that. And then half that again. So one and a half times what you would normally charge for a one hour acupuncture treatment.

You’re going to charge one and a half times. Because your patient will be in the room for about an hour and a half, maybe a little less. So it is entirely possible to have two rooms going at once. Maybe not. When you first start out, when you first start out, it might take you a little longer to get the needles in, but once you’ve done it a few times, couple a dozen times, you should be able to get the needles in, in about 15 minutes.

And be on to the next room. What about ancillary services and by ancillary services? Cupping in Washa Derma rolling microneedling. How do you work this in? As I just mentioned I never do. Cosmetic acupuncture without doing facial cupping and GU jaw. So it’s how I end my treatments. It helps with bruising, it relaxes the patient.

It’s something that I look forward to and it helps to bring the blood and the cheat out to the skin level. And it’s a really nice way and a treat. You can be trained specifically in facial cupping in Guha, or you can take a comprehensive course in facial acupuncture, cupping and Guha, which is what I would recommend.

Also, you will have patients who don’t want needles. And with them I can do in a half an hour. I do just facial cupping in Washa and I would charge accordingly for an abbreviated, half an hour cupping in Washa treatment. Derma rolling is something that you can offer as an add-on and. What I like to do would be more like Derma rolling and facial cupping in Guha, or I might do derro on a neck and chest and just do the facial acupuncture on the face.

I don’t like to end a facial acupuncture treatment with Derma rolling, because it can be a. For the skin. You can sell your patients of Derma welder and teach them how to use it, and then they can use it at home in between treatments, or you can offer it as a separate service. And then depending on how much time you wanna spend with the Derma, rolling will determine.

What you would charge and charge accordingly. Now dermas are single person use, you don’t wanna be sharing them between patients. There’s no way to Barb aside or autoclave these safely, because little pieces of hair and skin fragments, microscopic can. Stuck in between the needles and you could cross-contaminate.

So if you were going to offer it as a service, you either keep the Dermer roller for your patients for when they come and you would clean it and use it just on them, or you reduce it on them and send them home with it. And then if they wanted you to do a treatment on them, when they come back, they would have to bring it.

As far as microneedling, I do microneedling as a standalone service. So I will do facial acupuncture, and then microneedling. And the only caveat to this is. If someone only wants or needs microneedling, let’s say on their neck, on their chest, on their hands, I can do cosmetic acupuncture.

So I would put in the body points and the face points, and then I could put numbing cream on them. And then once I take the needles out of their face, I could do the microneedling, or even when the needles are in, I could potentially do the microneedling once the numbing cream comes off. And this way the person is getting the best of both worlds, especially if they have problem areas around the lips, on the chin.

But you don’t wanna be doing cosmetic acupuncture and microneedling on the same area in the same treatment. And microneedling is extremely profitable. It’s very easy to add into your practice. And people are charging anywhere from 350 to $700 for a half an hour. Microneedling treat. Yes. So you have your initial investment of your microneedling tool, like the ACU lift MicroPen or and then the only thing you have to replace are your serums, which are not a tremendous investment up front.

And then you can add this on as a treatment. I think that is all I have for you today. You can find me on social media at facialacupuncture,classes.com or on Facebook or Instagram or TikTok Michelle Galles. And again, thank you to the American Acupuncture Council for hosting this. And I look forward to seeing your next.