Moxibustion (moxa) is less well known than Acupuncture. It is the burning of ‘mugwort’ (artemesia vulgaris; 艾mogusa in Japanese) to therapeutically stimulate your body with heat.
Traditionally these therapies are used together. In fact, they are so intertwined that the Chinese characters for acupuncture ( 鍼 ) and moxibustion ( 灸 ) must be written together ( 鍼灸 ) to be understood as meaning treatment using these tools. It is a bit like a knife and fork – the tools are different and can be used independently, but used together they are more effective.
Warming & Cooling
Moxa is versatile. It can be shaped and used in many different forms depending on what the situation calls for.
We will use moxa to warm cold, stiff areas; and to add energy to areas of your body where necessary.
Moxa is also a very effective tool to disperse heat from areas of your body with excess heat such as inflammations and swellings. Whilst this may seem counterintuitive, this is achieved by improving your flows of blood and Ki and promoting the natural radiation function of your skin.
On a systemic level, chronic inflammation (now recognised by bio-medicine as a major factor in many serious diseases) is also reduced.
Blood & Immunity
In oriental medical theory, moxa is considered to have a strong effect on your blood. Numerous bio-medical clinical trials confirm that moxa indeed produces profound changes in blood chemistry.
Significant increases in white blood-cell count highlight a major effect on the regulation of your immune response. Moxa is effective both in strengthening your immune system and in treating what bio-medicine calls “auto-immune disease”.
Blood & Womens’ Health
Many other blood indicators are positively affected by moxa, including red blood-cell count and clotting factors. Because of this connection with blood, moxa is sometimes said to be specifically useful for treating women’s health issues such as infertility, menstrual difficulty gynecological complaints etc. (See nonSpecialism).
Moxibustion is an art in itself with a history stretching back into pre-history, beyond even that of Acupuncture. With a good understanding and proficiency in this art, treatment can have a powerful, positive effect on your internal organs and overall health.