Practice type: Private
Specialties: Autoimmune conditions, general wellness, headaches / migraines, insomnia, musculoskeletal pain
Styles: Dr. Tan’s Balance Method, NADA, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
Why did you become an acupuncturist?
In my previous work as an EMT and nurse, I found that the Western treatment worked well for trauma and acute cases but lacked in preventive and chronic care. My realization came when I was working as nurse in a nursing home. Every time one of the residents complained of a new ailment, the doctors would put in an order to increase his or her medication. I began to feel that I was not truly helping my patients and I was only treating their symptoms. I knew that the body was much stronger and with the right stimulus could heal and make positive changes itself. Through research I discovered acupuncture, which relied on the body’s natural strength and healing powers.
What distinguishes you from other acupuncturists?
Having worked for so long as a nurse and EMT (eight years total) and currently working as an acupuncturist (six years) I have been able to bridge patient understanding to the traditional Chinese model. I practice in a way that I make sure each and every patient understands the corrections that are being made. Patient wellness is a joint effort between the practitioner and the patient, so it is important that a mutual understanding is reached. I also firmly believe that no practitioner is an island and that open communication with other doctors, naturopaths, massage therapists, chiropractors, etc. only helps to strengthen the work that I do.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I feel like I make a difference. In our clinic, and I am sure other acupuncturists hear this as well, patients say acupuncture was their last resort. After a few sessions I can see what a positive effect it has on not just their physical aliments but also their change in spirit. They have hope again. I enjoy seeing people become well and take back their lives. They become more active, their moods shift for the better, and they have a new lease on life.
What is the biggest misconception you hear about acupuncture?
The biggest misconception I hear is that once you begin acupuncture you have to continually come or your condition relapses. In the beginning, you absolutely have to come in regularly because your body needs to make a change and that requires repetition. Once the change is in place and “holding,” there is a maintenance phase, during which you are seen less often and your body continues to heal on its own. I have seen patients for three months continually, then they return once or twice a year for a tune up. I have also seen patients who come three or four times and don’t need to see me again for a year after that. Every patient is different and as a result, treatment frequency will vary.
How do you stay healthy in your own life?
To stay healthy in my own life I try to keep everything in balance. I believe that it is important to be in nature and experience the ebbs and flows of the seasons. I enjoy hiking and biking and staying out doors as much as possible. I also get biweekly treatments from fellow practitioners to continually get new perspectives and feedback. The mind is an important part of a body’s balance as well, so I make sure to always be learning new things and improving my acupuncture technique.
1840 E. Baseline Road, Suite A-1, Tempe, AZ 85283