Moxabustion, often just referred to as “moxa”, is a traditional Chinese therapy using the herb mugwort or atemisia vulgaris. In China, it is cultivated for medicinal use and dried. When it is lit and held above the skin around acupuncture points, it delivers a warming, blood moving, and energizing effect to the areas of the body where it is needed to strengthen the body’s response to treatment.
Moxa is especially helpful in the treatment of patients who are easily bothered by cold temperatures (any time of year), those who have arthritic joints which respond well to warmth, and or those who have digestive problems from consuming a lot of raw, uncooked foods. Stiff and tight muscles often respond best to a combination of moxa along with acupuncture treatment as it stimulates blood circulation and relaxes the muscles.
Moxa comes in many forms which allow it to be burned directly on the skin or while attached to the ends of acupuncture needles or compressed into cigar-like sticks. For safety reasons, only “smokeless” stick moxa is used at Luna Acupuncture.