Avoiding the Easy Button: Acupuncturist Promotes Lifestyle Education for Better Health
Apr 29, 2017 02:26PM
● By Sheila Julson
Licensed acupuncturist Beverly Fornoff, of Lancaster Acupuncture, discovered the pain-relieving benefits of acupuncture after suffering from injuries she sustained from a car accident. “I saw how well it worked to relieve pain and I felt much better after getting acupuncture treatments. It physically and emotionally impacted my life,” she reflects.
Fornoff already had a background in conventional health care as a respiratory therapist. Her knowledge of physiology, combined with her enthusiasm for acupuncture, made it easy to transition from Western medicine to Eastern prevention-focused treatment modalities. She attended Traditional Acupuncture Institute (now known as Maryland University or Integrative Health) and completed her acupuncture training in 2002. She practiced acupuncture in Baltimore before returning to her hometown of Lancaster in 2007. This past November, Fornoff joined with two other wellness practitioners to form Eden Natural Care Center, where she adopted the name Lancaster Acupuncture, LLC.
Although acupuncture can treat many conditions, pain management is the most common reason people seek care. “The Western medical system is set up well for acute situations and injuries, yet it lacks when it comes to prevention and managing chronic pain,” she says. “People have come to realize that acupuncture can relieve pain symptoms and even address the source of the pain. They are understanding what acupuncture is and realize that there is no ‘easy button’ when it comes to your health; it’s not a quick fix.”
Education is a crucial component of Fornoff’s practice, and she addresses patients’ emotional and physical needs by showing them how every aspect of their lives can affect physical health, from what one chooses to eat and drink, to relationships, to work environments. “We use acupuncture to bring awareness to their physical bodies and influence the movement of qi, or energy, within the body to create the most optimal healing environment,” she explains. “The body has its own mechanisms for healing, but things we do block the body’s ability to heal itself. Acupuncture really rebalances that.”
Fornoff has studied many styles of acupuncture and woven them into her own approach, which focuses on rebalancing the energy channels and the emotions to treat the source of the condition, inducing healing on all levels.
In 2013, Fornoff received her herbal training certification. She creates blends of raw Chinese herbs that nourish the blood and improve blood flow. She says herbs can be particularly helpful for women’s issues such as pre-menstrual syndrome. The herbs are often prescribed in tea form, which allows patients to see, smell and touch the herbs and become more connected to Earth and the environment. Working with herbs at home also encourages patients to better engage in good health practices.
Fornoff is optimistic about the future of complementary medicine in the U.S. She sees patients of all ages that have already tried conventional treatments and saw few results. While some people may be accustomed to hitting that “easy button” through quick-fix pharmaceuticals, Fornoff is dedicated to slowly working with people to encourage them to make small lifestyle changes, thus becoming empowered to take charge of their own health.
“My future vision is that Western medicine and acupuncture will integrate,” she observes. “We can all work together to support the best interest of the patient—especially when it comes to prevention and chronic illness.”
Lancaster Acupuncture is located at 600F Eden Rd., in Lancaster. For more information, call 717-381-7334 or visit LancasterAcupuncture.com.
Sheila Julson is a Milwaukee-based freelance writer and contributor to Natural Awakenings magazines throughout the country.