Practice type: Private
Specialties: Anxiety, back pain, cosmetic care, general wellness, stress
Styles: Auricular (ear) acupuncture, Dr. Tan’s Balance Method, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
Why did you become an acupuncturist?
My journey into healthcare began in my teens when I gave up eating meat. I was always concerned about how the environment and what we eat can affect our bodies and minds. And after watching a family member struggle to find help in the western medical world, I knew there had to be a different way to find relief and move towards real healing. My love for the arts and humanities had me studying art history as an undergraduate, and I dabbled in jewelry design and interior design. But I eventually realized that my true calling was to turn my “unconventional” interests and lifestyle into a tool to help other people. And really, that’s what this life is all about.
What distinguishes you from other acupuncturists?
I always personalize each and every treatment and work hard to adjust to any individual’s needs. My goal is to make your acupuncture treatment as comfortable as possible, although sometimes a little discomfort can pay off in the long run. What works for one person, may not work for another. I always honor the body and try to listen to what it’s telling me. Life can be a little crazy sometimes—I’ve been there. Acupuncture can be that extra edge to help heal and cope with whatever life throws at you.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I love to see the change in expression on my patients’ faces after treatment. It’s so much more relaxed and calm, but also a little surprised that they feel so good! And taking the time to really discuss all of the nuances of their symptoms can be a big help in figuring out how to approach treatment. It’s a little bit like being a health detective.
What is the biggest misconception you hear about acupuncture?
Acupuncture takes time—and you really get out of it what you put into it. So, if there’s a health concern and you have decided that western medicine is not a good fit or they can’t give you any answers, really giving acupuncture a “try” can take as many as six to 10 treatments, ideally twice a week. Herbs can also be just as important in treating what ails you, so be honest about compliance or if you are even interested in taking them.
How do you stay healthy in your own life?
For me, staying healthy has always been about getting enough sleep and eating well. Being self aware is also a huge factor, so that you can nip a cold in the bud. I honestly schedule time to sleep, making sure I have at least one day to catch up. I take supplements and herbs three or four times a week, bundle up in the wind, and do mild exercise like walking and yoga. Stress management is a huge factor as well. I use binaural beats and aromatherapy as quick hacks to keep stress and anxiety from building up. Of course, I needle myself regularly and moxa ST36 at least once a week in the winter.
What is cosmetic acupuncture?
Cosmetic acupuncture is one of my favorite things because it really becomes a gateway to this kind of medicine. It’s not just about wrinkles, although that’s definitely addressed. It’s about reflecting inner health and happiness to the outside world. So even though the treatment is focused on the face, most of the time we are also addressing physical health issues as well as psycho-emotional issues. Especially for women in our society, looking good, feeling good, and self-esteem are so tightly wrapped together.
1030 N Clark Street, Suite 610, Chicago, IL 60610