Welcome to Amy Lao's Acupuncture Clinic

Opening Hours : Mon to Sat - by appointment
  Contact : +1 403-681-1989

Do you need more information about Traditional Chinese Medicine, about Dr. Amy Lao’s practice or what to expect when entering the cabinet? Please check our Frequently Asked Questions page or contact us

Tell Me More About Acupuncture & Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)

Acupuncture has a very long and venerable history in China, and it is growing in popularity in the West.

It can help in a very wide range of conditions and illnesses, even some which cannot be helped by regular medicine. In a state of health, the body is suffused with vital energy (called Qi in Chinese medicine). When someone is run down or exhausted, this energy may become blocked or depleted, and there is no longer enough qi for the body to function well. At first, this gives rise to tiredness and discomfort, but if this continues for a long time, real disease may develop.

Qi flows along the 14 major lines called channels or meridians. Most of these originate in the trunk, and go out along an arm or limb. The Qi concentrates at specific ‘acupuncture points’. By inserting a needle at these points, the energy flow is invigorated along the whole length of the channel. This means that points can be used which are far away from the main site of the trouble. For example, headaches and eye problems may be treated by points on the feet; lung problems may be treated by points on the hands.

Acupuncture works by strengthening Qi and restoring its flow.

Once Qi is restored, healing starts to take place.

What is The Consultation and Diagnosis Process

The consultation includes questioning, observing, examination of the pulse and tongue, as well as physical examination when required. What the physician is looking for are not symptoms in isolation but rather a pattern into which is woven a total picture of the patient. Tongue and pulse diagnosis are highly refined in Chinese medicine.

How long is each treatment and how many treatments are required?

Treatments are approximately 1 hour long. The number of treatments required depends on the condition being treated and the response of the patient to treatment. Treatment of chronic conditions is usually once per week to begin with; and for acute problems, can be daily until the practitioner is confident that longer intervals are beneficial as the body’s healing abilities are enhanced.

Is it safe to use acupuncture needles, or do I risk infections?

We only use disposable needles, there is no risk of infection in Dr. Amy Lao’s Acupuncture Cabinet

Do needles hurt?

In a treatment, needles are inserted at various points on the body and limbs. The needles themselves are very fine (they could pass down the centre of a hypodermic needle). After insertion, they may be moved gently to produce the desired result on the energy, and then they are left in place for the required amount of time.

In many conditions, the sensation is no more than a slight prick (although sometimes a shooting nerve-like sensation is experienced.)

It is common to feel very relaxed and almost fall asleep during this period.

Digestive problems

  • ulcers, dyspepsia (indigestion), stomach pains, loss of appetite, anorexia,
  • hiccups, difficulty swallowing, colitis, intestinal disorders, diarrhea, constipation,
  • bloating, hemorrhoids, gallbladder problems, liver disease, vomiting.



Respiratory problems

asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, laryngitis, sinusitis, rhinitis (runny nose), cough, colds, flu, dyspnea (shortness of breath).

Circulatory problems

numbness, cold limbs, chills, swelling, edema, hypertension, hypotension.

Urinary problems

prostate problems, cystitis, incontinence, difficulty urinating.

Genital problems

vaginitis (vaginal infection, vaginal irritation), painful menstruation, heavy periods, irregular periods, missed periods, menopause, low libido, infertility, impotence, pregnancy problems.

Hearing problems

some kinds of hearing loss, tinnitus, ringing ears, Meniere’s disease, ear pain.

Eye problems

blurred vision, conjunctivitis (pink eye), some kinds of vision loss, dizziness, cataracts, glaucoma, black spots.

Musculo-skeletal problems

some kinds of paralysis (including hemiplegia), muscular atrophy and muscular dystrophy.


nervousness, anxiety, insomnia, stuttering, nervous tics, phobias, depression, general fatigue, obsessions, nightmares, bulimia, vertigo, tremors, loss of balance.

Skin problems

eczema, herpes, zoster, boils, dermatitis, psoriasis, acne, hives, athlete’s foot.


hay fever etc.

Pain relief

arthritis, rheumatism, stiff neck (torticollis, wryneck), neck pain, sciatica, lumbago, muscle pain, headaches, migraines, sports injuries, tennis elbow, cramps, sprains, bursitis, trigeminal neuralgia, facial neuralgia, knee problems.

Other health conditions

diabetes, arteriosclerosis, cholesterol problems, hypoglycemia, hyperglycemia, anemia, mononucleosis, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, ataxia, myelitis, fibroids, addiction (e.g., smoking, drugs, alcohol, overeating).

Is there anyone or any condition that cannot be treated by TCM?

Yes. In consultation, your TCM practitioner will advise if the condition is treatable and what improvements may be expected.

Can Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) be used for the whole family, including children?

Yes. The whole family’s health concerns can be addressed with TCM, including common childhood diseases, colds, flu, infection, allergies, sleep problems and more.

Can TCM be used in conjunction with Western medicine and other alternative treatments?

TCM can be combined with Western therapies and alternative treatments. You should advise your practitioner of any other alternative therapies you are utilizing in order to insure effective TCM treatments.

Are the beneficial effects of acupuncture treatments temporary, or are they cumulative toward permanent healing so that treatments are needed less often or not at all?

TCM takes into account the whole person, not only the disease symptoms but also the age, habits, physical and emotional traits, and all other aspects of the individual patterns of disharmony that have arisen.

The treatments are cumulative toward replacing these patterns with healthy patterns so the body is able to heal and maintain itself more efficiently on its own.

As soon as improvements are attained, should treatments be stopped?

Not always. It is strongly recommended, for best long-term results, that treatments be continued on your practitioner’s advice, until confident that your body can maintain and continue the improvements on its own. This will prevent future relapse.