Cuba demonstrates acupuncture in class

Anna Boratyn
Executive Opinion Editor|
At one point in college, World Religions teacher John Camardella couldn’t raise his hands above his head because of his severe arthritis.   He credits sessions of acupuncture, over several months, for helping alleviate and eventually cure his arthritis and improve his health.
 On Nov. 30, John had his wife, licensed acupuncturist Lindy Camardella, demonstrate acupuncture on John in his World Religions class.Acupuncture fits into the  World Religions curriculum because the class is having a unit on Daoism, a philosophy that puts emphasis in the ability of the natural world to balance itself.  According to Daoism, conflict arises when you go against the natural world.
According to Lindy, acupuncture just reminds the body how energy, called chi,  is supposed to flow.
John sees acupuncture as a  way to “live a healthy, balanced lifestyle.” To John, Western and Eastern medicine represent Dao’s yin and yang– different forces that balance each other out.
Lindy’s experience with acupuncture too began with disease.  In college, Lindy , who originally intended to become a doctor, would suffer from recurring bronchitis infections.  After some acupuncture sessions, her bronchitis went away for good.
After getting into medical school, Lindy decided to become an acupuncturist.  She began school to be an acupuncturist in 2007, and has practiced for a little over a year.
Now, Lindy works at Advance Wellness institute in Arlington Heights. Lindy practices acupuncture on patients, but some of her time is spent visiting grade, middle and high schools and talking about acupuncture.
According to Lindy, an acupuncture needle creates a “microtrauma” that alerts the body to mount an immune response to a certain area of the body, which causes the body to cure that area of the body.
According to Lindy , acupuncture needles are rounded to “push skin out of the way.” They also avoid major arteries and nerves.  There usually is no bleeding or pain involved in acupuncture.
Though it’s considered alternative medicine, acupuncture has very real effects.  According to Lindy, soldiers who undergo some form of acupuncture experienced less post-traumatic stress, flashbacks and suicidal thoughts.
Lindy also demonstrated cupping by suctioning  glass cups onto John’s back.  Cupping can help with lactic acid buildup, a cause of pain and sore muscles.  The cups left purple-pink, bruise like circles on his back.
Usually, the cups are left on for five to ten minutes, or until a certain color change is achieved.  Though the markings on John look bruise-like, they aren’t bruises, and there is no pain involved in the process.
For those interested in acupuncture, Lindy’s advice is to find a licensed acupuncture practitioner– not a medical professional who does acupuncture on the side.
Only licensed acupuncturists are required to have upwards of 2000 hours of acupuncture experience.  Furthermore, Lindy  says that having an acupuncturist who is a good fit, “someone you like, trust, and feel comfortable with” is important for effective acupuncture sessions.