Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

Today there are so many choices available claiming to erase the visible signs of pre-mature aging. As part of the aging boomer generation I am continually working to inspire others by looking and feeling great for as long as I live.  Many women and some men are asking me what alternatives to medication , surgery , cosmetic fillers & injections actually work ; so I set out to further investigate some of the oldest forms of Eastern Medicine , Acupuncture & massage .

Although I have been receiving monthly Acupuncture treatments  for stress and hormonal balance for over a  year ,  I was fascinated with a traditional  therapy in acupuncture called Facial Rejuvenation.

I have just completed a full set – 12 treatment Acupuncture -facelift series , with Dr Michelle O’Shaughnessy, owner of Aesthetic Acupuncture Clinic in Orlando www.aestheticacupuntureclinic.com and am very pleased with the results.

Dr Michelle has the professional training as both an acupuncturist and an esthetician and loves using nutritional products too, to help her patients meet their goals. She and her husband have created a frozen soups with added Chinese herbs that are condition-specific( metabolic, detox , recovery,lungs  )  to encourage healing from the inside for people who have limited cooking abilities,  time constraints or who may want to limit oral supplementation.


Acupuncture facelifts , are an overall body makeover and do much more than just impact the face &  neck areas. Unlike a “tight ” un-natural wrinkle-free pulled skin look , these methods are much more natural ; they involve improving overall muscle & skin tone with improved elasticity for both the key target areas-face and neck with supportive body balance. These treatments  include a facial /European type of massage too.

Qi or circulation is stimulated by needles on the the face ( the normal flow of circulation  the  face is compromised as we age , “dragging “down facial muscles )  and supported by additional needles in your legs,feet,arms & hands  to achieve maximum stimulation and circulation and ultimate body balance. The needles that are used in this treatment are coated in silicon and are extremely thin , so you hardly feel them . Many of these esthetician’s also have needle-free skin -lifting machines ( micro-current technology ) that offer the similar effects , although more treatments are necessary . Acupuncture works by causing a slight trauma to the area of injection , forcing the body to produce more protein. This action plumps up the skin to reduce the visible fine lines & wrinkles.

Typical Acupuncture facelift benefits include : reduction of both fine lines, wrinkles and bags under the eyes ,lifts eyelids, firms the jowl area, reduces puffiness and stress , tightens pores & moisturizes skin,improves lymph & blood circulation and improves acne.

One additional benefit that I have noticed , is that my long distance vision has improved and I have not worn my glasses for driving in 6 months. I also advise you to follow a strong nutritional program with Dr Venessa’s Anti-Aging3 Collagen 1-2 times daily . This supplement along with the many benefits I have written about in previous entries , has now started to increase the layers of my facial skin., adding additional elasticity . Both Dr Michelle and the Janean Hamilton , RN , my acupuncturist ( stress management ) at the FL School of Integrative Medicine www.fcim.edu have noticed the improvements and have starting using and recommending the Anti-Aging3 collagen .

Other important nutrients to consider adding  would be the Jarro-sil or Natrol Bio-sil pro collagen liquid drops, along with amino acids like Carnosine , Acetyl Carnitine & l-Glutamine, Lutein, Alpha Lipoic Acid, B-Complex , MSM ,Resveratrol  or pycnogenol ,hyaluronic acid &  essential fatty acids like Evening Primrose oil  or Marine DHA  . Absolute musts for helathy vibrant skin include super green foods, like Greens+ , Perfect Food ,Chlorella or Spirulina , Dr Venessa’s Liverclean, turmeric or curry powder along  with hydration from water & lemon  and green tea  are essential .

For those who may needle- phobic or who travel frequently ; try the Health Recovery Chips that use a new revolutionary nanometer technology ( are actually crystalized stones with jade & sapphire)  and are safe ,efficient and very simple to use . www.shennongroup.ca. These are terrific for home use, are cost effective and will work between scheduled treatments .

For people who may want more of an instant lift , but don’t want Botox , Guna Therapeutics offers a natural homeopathic injections but they may only last 2-3 weeks in the beginning .   Check with your esthetician :with frequent use the dosage  used decreases and the length of time  between visits increases, becoming more cost effective .

The “filler category is increasing with Restalyn as the major filler for the brow or lip area . This injectable contains hyaluronic acid and is safer than Botox but is just as costly . Because it forms a bump or ridge in the area injected, it is not suitable for the entire face.

For those of you who want an alternative ,safe , and total body anti-aging effect, try acupuncture or one of the micro-current treatments that use a mild electrical vibration to lift and tone the skin. Do not confuse these treatments with micro-dermabrasion .This is equivalent to “mowing the grass” while these in depth acupressure massage and lifting treatments actually support the inside of the tissue too. There are 18 different facial acupressure points.

Another facial treatment winner that I like is the Bellanina Facelift Massage method www.belavi.com that works similar to the Acupuncture facelift except it is massage based and does not use needles. The roots of this treatment actually has some Asian roots….I was trained in this technique by the owner Nina Howard and now use some of the home techniques taught for my  daily maintenance cleansing routine. Long term aging  benefits packages start include a 10 week package , but stress reduction & relaxation is apparent after just 1 treatment . These treatments can actually be combined with acupuncture for additional health benefits. Monthly treatments and home acupressure massage techniques will keep the face firmed and toned between treatments.

These treatments are available at many day spas ,independent estheticians’ , massage therapists and several integrative wellness centers.If you are ever in the Ann Arbor Michigan ,give yourself a treat and make an appointment at the Bellanina Day Spa (www.bellaninadayspa.com)  for a facelift massage .

Whichever treatment you prefer; they are all superior to toxic injections or a an expensive facelift, unless it is for facial reconstruction or a health condition. Remember, that even Botox type injections will not work as well on thin skin so they become less effective with older, aging or diabetic skin challenges.

With Acupuncture, massage , nutritional supplements,  a healthy diet and exercise you can achieve your goals for 2009 and look & feel terrific .

In our twenties we have the body we inherited; in our forties we have the body we made and by the time we are in our fifties or older , we have the body that we deserve because of the way we lived our earlier years…………Dr Michelle O’Shaughnessy

Erase your visible signs of aging skin and improve your overall energy with acupuncture ( both face & body !) and healthy lifestyle changes for 2009 .  You will be amazed  at the results.

In Continued Health ,

Sally Byrd

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