How might not be your first guess.
Alexandria, VA – After a year like 2020, everyone needs some serious self-care. One might initially think of the classics: a massage, a facial, a vacation. But one self-care practice that might not be your immediate thought—but absolutely should be—is acupuncture.
One of Alexandrians’ favorite local self-care establishments is Caring Acupuncture, on Eisenhower Avenue, founded in 2017 by Dr. Tetsuhiro Ueno, L. Ac. Caring Acupuncture won Zebra’s Reader’s Choice Award for Best Acupuncturist in 2020.
Dr. Ueno worked at an integrative medical clinic for ten years before deciding to open his practice. Originally from Japan, Dr. Ueno explains his professional path, “My first job brought my wife and me from Japan to Washington D.C. in 1999. One day we visited an acupuncture clinic recommended by our friend. It was a small clinic with one acupuncturist accompanied by his wife and dog. My wife and I said to each other, ‘This is nice! We might be able to do this!’ Now I am so happy to have changed professions because I can feel patients’ happiness directly when I help them.”
Today, two acupuncturists, each having finished doctoral programs in Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, and two friendly receptionists, one of whom is Dr. Ueno’s wife, Sachiko, work alongside Dr. Ueno. Although their dogs can’t come to the clinic, Dr. Ueno and Sachiko have achieved their dream.
Acupuncture helps improve multiple states of being: mental, physical, and emotional. Acupuncture treatment is relaxing, not painful, and helps many conditions such as pain, stress, insomnia, anxiety/depression, infertility, digestive issues, weight management, allergy, skin disorders, and immune disorders.
Rebecca Roy, a patient of Dr. Ueno, receives weekly acupuncture therapy to alleviate side effects of on-going cancer treatment. Last July, Rebecca began treatment for Stage 4 Metastatic Large Cell Neuroendocrine Cancer. Along with chemotherapy and immunotherapy, Rebecca starts every week with an acupuncture treatment that she says helps her with “organ support, pain management, stress relief, and energetic balancing.
“My life changed dramatically this past year,” says Rebecca. “A year ago, this idea of doing something to take care of myself felt like a big indulgence—like going on a retreat or a vacation or going to a spa—but I don’t have the mental space or frankly the time to think that way now. So when I think of self-care, I try to keep it simple and be mindful and joyful. Even though this last year has been the most challenging in my life, I am very grateful for this lesson.”
While this year looked difficult for patrons and business owners alike, Dr. Ueno says, “We have been committed to providing a clean and safe environment during this pandemic, such as placing air purifiers in each treatment room, ventilating the air, and disinfecting the room after each treatment.”
Dr. Ueno and the Caring Acupuncture team have helped Alexandrians relax for almost four years. This year, some Alexandrians have found self-care to be more important than ever.