Covid isn’t going away, at least not anytime soon. So it’s time to sign on to wearing a proper mask whenever you are interacting with people outside your pod.
The Oregon Health Authority put this out (see below for their full text):
It’s important to note that not all fabric masks are the same. You want tightly woven cotton: Knit fabrics and anything you can see through are not as useful.
Also, they should fit tightly around the edges. Your mask should have a wire across the nose that you can adjust for your face shape. If your glasses are fogging up, air is escaping out the top: Find a mask with a better fit, or use medical tape along the top edge. If your mask is falling off your face and you find yourself adjusting it constantly, the straps are too loose. For the ear loop type, try twisting them, or using a short strap with buttons on the ends on the back of your head. More tips here!
Yes, wearing a properly fitted, actually filtering mask will be warmer and feel like it’s harder to breathe – you are still getting PLENTY of oxygen (just ask all the doctors and industrial workers who wear them all day). Most people* will get used to it pretty quickly. I hardly notice it anymore – I’ve been wearing N95s this whole time.
N95 / KN95 / KF94s are meant to be worn about 8 hours. If you only did a quick trip in one, you can set it aside and use it again. They don’t last forever though – if your mask gets soaked or soiled, throw it away.
*For those with sensory issues, I’m sorry. It really stinks. But please try to endure them when you should, or reduce your exposure by using curbside delivery, etc.
The full text of the OHA post:
With the highly contagious Omicron variant still spreading across Oregon, some of our masks may not be protecting us as much as they did against previous variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. Recently, the CDC updated their masking recommendations: N95 and KN95 respirators provide greater protection than cloth or disposable medical masks.They are made to fit tightly to the face, and when worn properly do a better job than cloth or medical masks at keeping virus-carrying particles from passing through and around the mask.◌ N95 masks ideally filter at least 95% of airborne particles with the proper fit, and they are approved by the NIOSH National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.◌ KN95 masks also ideally filter at least 95% of airborne particles but are not approved by NIOSH. They are manufactured in China and meet China’s standard of quality requirements.◌ KF94 masks ideally filter at least 94% of airborne particles, are made in South Korea and meet Korea’s standard of quality requirements. They are not approved by NIOSH.These types of respirator masks may not be necessary to wear in all situations, but the CDC recommends them in certain high-risk circumstances (http://ow.ly/h2Ng50HH7mr), such as if you’re caring for someone who is sick with COVID-19, traveling on public transportation or if you’re unvaccinated.To learn more about the differences between your mask options and how to spot a counterfeit or low-quality mask, visit our blog: http://ow.ly/SRNM50HH7mp
I’m having a total hysterectomy on Nov 10. I’ll be out of the office completely from Wednesday 11/10 until Monday 11/29 at least. After that I’m going to play it by ear. I’ll come back first just for acupuncture. Once I can engage my core again (about 6 weeks, towards the end of December) I’ll resume offering medical massage.
Feel free to use the WAIT LIST option at the top of the booking page to let me know you want an appointment when I’m ready.
If you already have an appointment with me during this time, I’ll be contacting you shortly. All dates are subject to change depending on how my recovery goes.
I still have some openings available before the surgery, so grab those if you need some care before I shut down. Also, let me know if you need to pick up more CBD / anti-inflammatory supplies, or gift certificates for the holidays.
First – the basics. There are two major types of active chemicals in marijuana. THC gets you high, and is federally regulated. CBD doesn’t, and isn’t. With CBD there’s no high or sleepiness, and with the sublinguals (liquid you drop under your tongue) you don’t get that weird feeling that edibles can create. It’s amazing for nerve pain and anxiety. Another reason I prefer the sublinguals to edibles is that they take effect within minutes, instead of hours. That also means it’s easier to dose: You can try a small amount and increase as needed with very quick feedback.
I did a lot of research before I decided which brand of CBD supplies to carry… The vast majority of products out there are low potency, low quality, and are in a cheap substrate (base) which means they don’t absorb well. Please don’t buy your medication at a grocery store, head shop, or gas station!
I started carrying Frogsong in 2018. This is a local family company run by some really terrific people. They actually derive their CBD from hemp. From them, I have:
Drops: Sublingual tincture, best for anxiety and all-over pain, like Fibromyalgia or widespread arthritis.
Drops for Pets: Frogsong is now offering a version for fur babies, too! You can put it in their food, or have them lick it from your hands. I used to dose my critters with Rescue Remedy by putting it on their ears for quick absorption with no hassle. I believe this will work for the CBD Drops as well. The packaging contains dosing instructions, and this information:
Body Balm: A light, lemony, aloe-based gel that absorbs quickly into the skin.
Rubbit: A heavier, moisturizing, minty salve. Fantastic for foot neuropathy or any place your skin needs a little extra help.
Earlier this year I added Kannaco to my line. They offer a topical CBD salve with menthol (nice for immediate pain relief) and Snooze Sleep Aid, a capsule with CBD and melatonin. My patients have been reporting excellent results with both.
Note: CBD is generally regarded as safer to combine with prescription medication than THC, but you should talk to your doctor if you have a question about drug interaction safety. I have a Master’s Degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, but I’m not a doctor and pharmacology is not my area of expertise.
If you prefer to avoid CBD, I still have the ever-popular anti-inflammatory Hai Tong Pi Tang, or “pancake spray” – named for its distinctive maple syrup scent. I’ve been using this for a decade on sore joints, sunburns, etc. and am always amazed at how powerful this ancient Chinese herbal formula can be. And if breakfast food perfume isn’t your thing, I also have a lavender version.
Feel free to ask me about any of these pain-relief solutions. I am happy to use the topicals on you during your treatment, so you can see if they work for you.
I’ve deliberately kept my rates low for years because I can’t stand the idea of someone not getting care because they can’t afford it… but my office rent, malpractice insurance, and other costs keep rising, and I’m now priced at a level far below my colleagues with similar experience and expertise. It’s time I gave myself a raise.
Starting Sept 1, hour appointments will be $130, and half hours will be $80. Packages of 4 hours or 5 half hours will still be $30 off. I’m also introducing a Complex New Patient option at $160 for 75 minutes. New Patient sessions for simpler cases will remain at the hour rate.
Any packages purchased before the rate change will be honored, of course, so stock up now!
NOTE for established patients: If this increase is a financial hardship for you, let me know, and I’ll honor the old rates as long as you need me to. Please don’t compromise your health.
Someone posts this meme on my Facebook wall every time it comes around and it makes me sad.
Look, I HAVE BEEN THERE. I was in severe chronic pain (9/10 on the pain scale) for years after my car accident. I was supposedly “crippled for life” and I UNDERSTAND the frustration and dark humor that arises from being in that situation. And I am the last person to try to tell you how to feel.
BUT… I also know as a professional healthcare provider, with 20 years of experience treating that chronic severe pain that you will heal better – and handle it better emotionally if it CANNOT be healed – if you are able to think of your body as a sick or injured friend instead of an enemy. Your traps and paraspinal muscles do not hate you. They are struggling.
Imagine you had plans with your friend, and they cancelled because they had strep throat. You wouldn’t be mad at them and call them terrible names. You would wish them speedy healing, and maybe bring them soup, right?
Your muscles have been damaged by injury, repetitive stress, or poor ergonomics. They are doing the best they can. What if they are screaming because they are under duress, and need your help?
LISTEN TO THEM.
Fix your posture (Lift the head and relax everything else – don’t do the forced-back rigid thing). Get some light, frequent movement. Start as small and briefly as you need, even if it’s making snow angels in bed, and gradually increase your level of exercise as you can. Weed out ergonomic problems at your desk. You want to challenge the body part instead of stressing it, which also means avoiding retraumatizing it with violent chiropractic or overly aggressive massage. Find a skilled acupuncturist and / or therapeutic medical massage specialist who can retrain your neurological and fascial systems. If you’re storing stress in your body, try to find ways to release it. Reduce inflammation, via meds if necessary, but also via your nutritional choices (sugar increases your pain). Learn to consciously relax your muscles – it’s difficult at first, but incredibly powerful when you practice, and will change your life. Please talk to me if I can help you learn about these self-care ideas or give you hands-on care.
Chinese Traditional Medicine (TCM) is based on energy management. I know that sounds woo-woo, and it was hard for me to wrap my scientific brain around that at first. I thought all those meridians (channels of energetic flow) were just superstition or a handy mnemonic to remember neuro-muscular junctions (where nerves join with muscles to control them). Instead, decades of experience has proved over and over to me that these energetics are real. I think we just don’t have the technology to see it yet, so it seems as mystical as an X-ray would to a medieval doctor.
There is a category of points used to promote the movement of stagnant energy. These are enormously helpful to reduce pain, and I also use them to evict overdue babies (along with some lower back points and the uterus point on the ear). I can usually help patients avoid a chemical induction that way. For a baby that’s not yet at term, I will need a doctor’s note saying it’s okay to stimulate labor before your due date.
STIMULATION OF THESE POINTS, ESPECIALLY EARLY IN A PREGNANCY, CAN LEAD TO MISCARRIAGE.
Other acupuncture is perfectly safe for pregnancy. If you have pain, I can use indirect methods to treat it symptomatically, and do the musculoskeletal work to relax your muscles and realign the bones.
If you are pregnant and want to stay that way, AVOID THESE POINTS when getting a massage, etc. The first three have links to more information and pictures.
Note: These points are on both the left and right. I just marked one side for simplicity.
If you are fully vaccinated, OR can be socially isolated for the two weeks before your appointment, I’d love to see you in person! You can read about the safety protocols here: http://rosecityacupuncture.com/blog/soft-re-open/ If that’s not possible for you, we can do a telehealth session over a HIPAA-compliant secure videochat. We’ll focus on immediate relief plus long term strategies. I can also teach your loved ones how to work on you. This will be a full hour (half hours for very simple or followup appts) of customized information and instruction for you, including:
discussion of possible causes of your issue(s) and identify lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your pain, stress, etc.
acupressure, both self-applied treatment and lessons so you can use it in the future
medical massage lessons, so you can treat yourself and your loved ones
teaching your partner / housemate how to do acupressure or medical massage for you
nutrition counseling to reduce pain and speed up healing
movement instruction – including rehab exercises, to build strength and mobility, and stretches (did you know I used to be an ACE-certified personal trainer and bodybuilder?)
anxiety and trauma self-care solutions
explanations of what’s happening in your body and brain, in easy-to-understand language
help with assessing / adjusting ergonomic setups (work space, sleep, etc)
help with reframing your internal monologue
This list is bound to grow, as I discover new ways to help you! Some patients like to take notes, but I will send you an email afterwards with links to information we talked about, acupressure points, etc. so you don’t have to worry about remembering everything.
I invite you to check out my reviews on Yelp and Google.
Here are a few recent ones:
JG: 5 stars
Sharon treated me in a virtual appointment for autoimmune issues (I am not strictly isolating and I respect her safety measures). Not only did she help with acupressure and nutrition advice (which has improved my issues tremendously), she was very considerate of my autism-related communication needs. Thank you so much for the valuable help!
RS: 5 stars
Sharon is a wonderful practitioner, compassionate and dedicated. Even during the time of coronavirus she was able to help me with a virtual session deal with some pulled muscles and give me feedback on stretches, diet changes and other things that would help me move better. It was so great to have access to that and to be able to consult with her. Highly recommend.
AK: 5 stars
I set up a virtual appointment with Sharon for pain in my feet that my other doctors haven’t even talked to me about. Since we are in quarantine Sharon showed me self massage and pressure points that I could do to manage my pain. After only one appointment my feet feel SO much better!
DG: 5 stars
Sharon is the most wonderful, caring, and knowledgeable therapist I have ever seen. She’s the best of both Acupuncture and Manual Therapy all wrapped into the perfect package. I have seen a large handful of other medical therapists and she is the only one who has been able to help with my chronic pain. My only wish is I lived in the same town so I could see her more regularly. I saw her last weekend and when I got home my Physical Therapist exclaimed “who is this woman and where can I find her?!? You look great!”
UPDATE: I ended up taking a week off of work to stay in Portland and get treatment (I live in Spokane, Wa), and a few follow up sessions over the next couple months. After three years struggling to find anyone to help, she finally helped me be pain free in a matter of months!! Anytime I do anything stupid to reinjure myself, I know where to go. There are no words to express my eternal gratefulness for this kind hearted healer. 💕
Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. I’m here for you!