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Bethel, CT: Laura Shahinian Kara

Fast facts
Practice type: Private
Specialties: Digestive conditions, Musculoskeletal pain, Sports injuries, Stress, Women’s health
Styles: Japanese acupuncture, Sports Medicine Acupuncture®, trigger point acupuncture

Why did you become an acupuncturist?
My first experience with alternative medicine came as a teenager in the 1970s, when my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He followed the usual protocol of surgery followed by chemotherapy and radiation. When those treatments failed, my father turned to alternative approaches. These complementary and alternative treatments kept my father alive four years longer than his doctors expected and introduced me to the power and effectiveness of alternative and Oriental medicine.

It was unusual, and progressive, for a patient in the 1970s to advocate for alternative approaches, in addition to Western medicine. Because he did, my father gave me a great gift in his dying, and planted a seed for the gifts of integrative healing I’m able to offer my patients every day.

What distinguishes you from other acupuncturists?
With a background of 20 years as a Shiatsu therapist, I consider myself a bodyworker first. I specialize in Japanese acupuncture, Sports Medicine Acupuncture®, and Acupuncture Physical Medicine (APM)—acupuncture that combines elements from both classical acupuncture and Western physical medicine. This combined with principles from Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) enable me to view your body from a truly integrative perspective.

What do you enjoy most about your work?
I love working with people. My commitment is to help people bring balance into their lives. Integrating Western treatments with Eastern philosophy is very rewarding, because although they appear to be at opposite ends of the spectrum, they are actually complementary to one another.

What is the biggest misconception you hear about acupuncture?
That it’s a sham or only works by placebo. After seeing thousands of patients over the last 12 years as an acupuncturist and 20 years as a Shiatsu practitioner, I’ve seen the positive effects of acupuncture. Luckily for our profession, there is more research now to back this up.

How do you stay healthy in your own life?
I do what makes my soul sing, which for me is Argentine tango. The music, intensity, and intimacy of this dance is addicting! As difficult as it is technically sometimes, it keeps me balanced. Finding the balance between work and family life is challenging. I try to pace myself by pausing, drinking water, eating well, and getting enough sleep. Walking my dog is my meditation time.

Learn more and get in touch
(203) 470-7072

268 Greenwood Avenue, Bethel, CT 06801

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