Cosmetic acupuncture or acupuncture facelifts were the topic of a November 6 health segment on WCCO Channel 4. The following is a transcript. For more information on cosmetic acupuncture, go to www.acupunctureinthepark.com
Dennis Douda (WCCO) The quest for youth has made Americans turn to Botox nearly 3 million times last year where nearly a quarter million people had an eye-lid lift. But how does an acupuncture facelift sound?
“Basically what we’re doing is, we’re stimulating the body to heal itself,” said Acupuncturist Lynn Jaffee.The techniques of acupuncture follow ancient maps of unseen currents flowing though the body. The notion is that every cell of your being creates energy and there is health when that energy flows in harmony.“The Chinese believe that it moves in the body in pathways and we can access those pathways, access that energy, through acupuncture points,” Jaffee said.Forms of acupuncture date back at least 8,000 years. Practitioners say it eases pain and cures disease. Some believe it can even restore the appearance of youth.“I do. I think it helps a lot. And it’s relaxing. Instead of having a facial or a massage, this is what I choose to do,” said acupuncture client Kathy Brown.
Brown turns 50 in about a week. She said Botox and surgery are not for her but cosmetic acupuncture seemed worth a try.Her before and after photos show a tightened jaw line and fewer wrinkles around the eyes and mouth. So how could acupuncture do that?“First of all it increases circulation in your face. And in doing that you’re bringing blood and nutrients to your face that may have slowed down as you age,” said Jaffee.“The other reason that we think it works is because it’s incredibly relaxing so it also works as a stress reliever,” she said.Studies also claim acupuncture increases collagen production beneath the skin and improves muscle tone. The acupuncture facelift involves nearly 80 needles. Some are placed along the pathways or meridians in the hands and feet.But, as you might expect, most of the needles are concentrated around the eyes, the corners of the mouth and the brow line and cheeks. Each has a specific purpose.“For instance there are points that will literally pull out wrinkles. There are points that are used for lifting. There are points that are used for plumping,” said Acupuncturist Shelley Conn.While a lot of needles are used for an acupuncture facelift, the hand and face needles are much smaller than a standard therapeutic needle. No matter which needles are used, they all come from sterile packaging and are designed to be used only once.The full treatment involves a dozen hour-long sessions spread over six to 12 weeks with a total cost around $1,000.“We see a decrease in the number of wrinkles, the depth of wrinkles,” said Jaffee. “We are definitely working on improving not only their looks but working on their health, because when you feel good, you look good.”So what do the needles feel like? Brown said the best description is when someone tugs on a single hair, but less intense.And the effects seem to be lasting. Clients often go in every 6 months for a maintenance treatment. Acupuncturists also say what we eat can affect our appearance.