Acupuncture at CORE

At Santa Cruz CORE, we have a passion for what we do. We make an effort to spend significant time and energy with each patient to ensure their needs are met. For us, it’s more than just acupuncture; our acupuncturists work with multiple healing modalities during an acupuncture session to get you feeling better. Working to create positive change in the body, we use a combination of needling, moxa, gua sha, cupping, ear seeds, massage, and Tai Chi and Qi Gung. Each individual is treated as such, an individual with an unique body and we use our various tools to create the most healing we can in each session.

Santa Cruz CORE Specializes in the following treatments

• chronic pain
• hormone balancing
• quitting smoking
• orthopedic limitations
• back pain
• migraines and chronic headaches
• stress management
• fertility
• anxiety
• insomnia
• skin conditions
• chronic disease
• arthritis
• auto immune disorders

• Gua Sha
• Tai Chi
• Dry needling
• Traditional Chinese Acupuncture
• Moxa
• Herbal Remedies.

We want to ensure that we are a good fit for you and offer you a complimentary consultation. Call today to schedule!

Ancient Practice & Modern Science

unnamedQi energy circulates throughout the body along specific pathways called meridians. As long as this energy flows freely, health is maintained. When the flow of energy is blocked due to stress, life-style or other causes, the system is disrupted and pain and illness occur. Acupuncture works to restore normal functions by stimulating certain points on the meridians with fine needles. The specific combination of points is chosen after your TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) practitioner applies in-depth systematic TCM diagnostic techniques, used to address the root cause of your symptoms and identify potential patterns that may cause disease or illness.

The primary focus of TCM is on correcting the underlying cause of an illness or disease and thus producing lasting relief. Symptoms can often be relieved in a matter of hours, or days, but correcting the illness itself is a much longer process. It is important, therefore to take an adequate number of treatments to insure the best results.

Acupuncture is an ancient healing modality originating in China. It involves the insertion of very fine, sterile metal needles into the body at acupuncture points. These acupuncture points are powerful accessors to the rivers of energy or meridians that run through our bodies. The meridians regulate energy flow, and thus determine our state of sickness or health. An unbalanced body is in a state of sickness, which has various manifestations. A balanced body is in a state of health. Acupuncture works to restore balance in our body’s energy flow so that our mind, body, and spirit can achieve it’s birthright of health and wellness.

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Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture

Facial AcupunctureFacial Rejuvenation Acupuncture is a non-invasive method that works with your body to enhance your complexion and reduce wrinkles and fine lines! Very fine acupuncture needles are placed on and around the face to draw circulation to the area and create minor ‘trauma’ (the same principle as laser face treatment) so that the body produces more collagen to the areas of reduced collagen / wrinkles. The body is also treated holistically, so points are chosen for acupuncture that treat the individual and their own imbalances which may lead to premature aging.

The Nu Skin Galvanic Spa treatment clarifies your complexion and fights signs of aging using advanced technology. This patented technology works in two stages to leave your skin in optimal condition a Pre-Treatment Stage and Treatment Stage. The Galvanic Current adjusts to your individual skin needs and works together with the Galvanic Spa Facial Gels to drive the ingredients deep within the skin, and to remove any impurities and pore clogging debris.

Benefits of a Galvanic Spa Facial

  • Lifts, tightens and firms the skin
  • Erases fine lines and wrinkles and softens moderate to deep lines and wrinkles
  • Eliminates skin dullness caused by aging or stress
  • Hydrates and infuses your complexion with essential extracts from marigold, sea kelp and vanilla
  • Arginine eliminates signs of stress such as dullness, under-eye bags and shadows
  • Magnesium, rose, sandalwood and jasmine extracts revive the skin and promote skin radiance
  • Removes impurities from deep within the skin, resulting in skin clarity and reduction of blemishes

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: You mentioned that it helps with fine lines. I’m most interested in addressing the (fairly deep) “11” lines between my eyebrows. Can Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture (FRA) do anything about these?

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I am 33 years old and am developing those lines quite nicely and FRA has helped tremendously to prevent those. My mother (age 61) has more definition in those exact lines as well and has been doing FRA and it has helped a lot to reduce the appearance of the wrinkles. So, yes it can reduce those lines -but it will take some time.

Q: Would I need to do the base of ten treatments to get to a maintenance level?

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Yes, a base of ten will get you to a maintenance level, however everyone’s body is slightly different so if after 10 weeks of doing the treatments weekly you may want to continue at that rate or you may want to spread it out. What is so great about FRA is that not only are you getting improvement in your skin but you are also getting a full body acupuncture treatment and what this does is help keep you young and healthy from the inside out.

Q: Would I have to continue the once a month treatments to maintain results?

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The treatment is not permanent and yes doing the treatment monthly or some say ‘as needed’ to maintain results is key, and though it sounds like an investment, it is one of the best investment I have made because not only does my skin look better, but some underlying issues are being resolved in the process which can prevent premature aging.

Acupuncture Recognized for Treating Disease

The World Health Organization has recognized Acupuncture as effective for many diseases. The diseases or disorders for which acupuncture therapy has been tested in controlled clinical trials reported in the recent literature can be classified into four categories as shown below.

1. Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which acupuncture has been proved through controlled trials to be an effective treatment:

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  • Adverse reactions to radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy
  • Allergic rhinitis (including hay fever)
  • Biliary colic
  • Depression (including depressive neurosis and depression following stroke)
  • Dysentery, acute bacillary
  • Dysmenorrhoea, primary
  • Epigastralgia, acute (in peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, and gastrospasm)
  • Facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders)
Hypertension, essential
Hypotension, primary
Induction of labour
  • Knee pain
  • Leukopenia
  • Low back pain
  • Malposition of fetus
  • Morning sickness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Neck pain
  • Pain in dentistry (including dental pain and temporomandibular dysfunction)
  • Periarthritis of shoulder
  • Postoperative pain
  • Renal colic
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sciatica
  • Sprain
  • Stroke
  • Tennis elbow

2. Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which the therapeutic effect of acupuncture has been shown but for which further proof is needed:

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  • Abdominal pain (in acute gastroenteritis or due to gastrointestinal spasm)
  • Acne vulgaris
  • Alcohol dependence and detoxification
  • Bell’s palsy
  • Bronchial asthma
  • Cancer pain
  • Cardiac neurosis
  • Cholecystitis, chronic, with acute exacerbation
  • Cholelithiasis
  • Competition stress syndrome
  • Craniocerebral injury, closed
  • Diabetes mellitus, non-insulin-dependent
  • Earache
  • Epidemic haemorrhagic fever
  • Epistaxis, simple (without generalized or local disease)
  • Eye pain due to subconjunctival injection
  • Female infertility
  • Facial spasm
  • Female urethral syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia and fasciitis
  • Gastrokinetic disturbance
  • Gouty arthritis
  • Hepatitis B virus carrier status
  • Herpes zoster (human (alpha) herpesvirus 3)
  • Hyperlipaemia
  • Hypo-ovarianism
  • Insomnia
  • Labour pain
  • Lactation, deficiency
  • Male sexual dysfunction, non-organic
  • Ménière disease
  • Neuralgia, post-herpetic
  • Neurodermatitis
  • Obesity
  • Opium, cocaine and heroin dependence
  • Osteoarthritis
Pain due to endoscopic examination
Pain in thromboangiitis obliterans
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (Stein-Leventhal syndrome ; PCOS)
  • Postextubation in children
  • Postoperative convalescence
  • Premenstrual syndrome
  • Prostatitis, chronic
  • Pruritus
  • Radicular and pseudoradicular pain syndrome
  • Raynaud syndrome, primary
  • Recurrent lower urinary-tract infection
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Retention of urine, traumatic
  • Schizophrenia
  • Sialism, drug-induced
  • Sjögren syndrome
  • Sore throat (including tonsillitis)
  • Spine pain, acute
  • Stiff neck
  • Temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ)
  • Tietze syndrome
  • Tobacco dependence
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Ulcerative colitis, chronic
  • Urolithiasis
  • Vascular dementia
  • Whooping cough (pertussis)

3. Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which there are only individual controlled trials reporting some therapeutic effects, but with acupuncture is worth trying because treatment by other therapies is difficult:

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  • Chloasma
  • Choroidopathy, central serous
  • Colour blindness
  • Deafness
  • Hypophrenia
  • Irritable colon / bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Neuropathic bladder in spinal cord injury
  • Pulmonary heart disease, chronic
  • Small airway obstruction

4. Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which acupuncture may be tried provided the practitioner has special modern medical knowledge and adequate monitoring equipment:

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  • Breathlessness in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Coma
  • Convulsions in infants
  • Coronary heart disease (angina pectoris)
  • Diarrhea in infants and young children
  • Encephalitis, viral, in children, late stage
  • Paralysis, progressive bulbar and pseudobulbar

Cupping & Gua Sha

Cupping and Gua Sha are methodologies under the heading of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) – of which Acupuncture, Moxibustion, Herbal Therapy, Nutrition, Tuina / Massage and Medical Qigong are also part. Cupping and Gua Sha are highly effective for treating musculoskeletal disorders where blood and energy have become stagnant, causing pain. It is also very effective for overall health / immunity, asthma, and digestive complaints. Cupping involves a suctioning cup that is either stationary or moved over the skin, drawing out impurities and improving blood flow to the area. Gua Sha involves “scraping” the skin with a tool made of buffalo horn, jade, or porcelin. By doing so, blood flow is improved, tension released, and pain reduced. Both therapies will result in what the Chinese refer to as “Sha” – markings of color ranging from a light red to black which appear on the skin after Cupping or Gua Sha. These marks indicate that the toxic energy or blood has been resolved and new blood is able to circulate in the area. The marks may appear strange to the onlooker, but the person receiving the therapy feels immensely better and will heal faster. Marks generally go away completely in one to two weeks.

Chinese Herbal Therapy & Nutrition

Chinese Herbal Therapy and Nutrition involve prescribing traditional Chinese herbal combinations in the form of tea, tincture, pills, powders, washes, plasters, or patches in order to effect healing. Nutritional, dietary, and lifestyle counseling involves assessing a person’s constitution and addressing its rebalancing through advice with its roots in the traditional chinese thinking of tastes, temperatures, and temperaments of persons, seasons, and foods.


Medical Qigong

Medical Qigong is a part of Traditional Chinese Medicine that focuses mainly on energetics. Although its idea may be less palpable than acupuncture, cupping, or herbal therapy, its principles are the same, as are its effects. Medical Qigong is a hands on or hands off approach that involved the practitioner re-balancing the patient’s energy fields. It can be used alone or in combination with acupuncture or cupping. Areas that are stagnant are moved and regulated, areas that need bolstering are tonified, and areas that are excessive are drained. Medical Qigong is useful for any disorder that acupuncture is also useful for. However, it excels in the healing of emotional and mood disorders, which are often the precursors to any number of physical disorders according to the concept of mind-body.

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Meet Our Acupuncturist

Craig Sakimoto L.Ac.