The Chinese name for acupuncture is "Zhen Jiu" which means "needle" and "burning". Burning refers to a process called moxibustion.
Moxibustion is a process where "moxa", or dried, compressed mugwort leaves, are burned to generate heat (much like an all natural heating pad). Moxibustion can be direct or indirectt. When moxa is applied directly to the skin, this is direct method. When it is held above the skin (as shown in the picture to the right) this is indirect. Indirect moxibustion can also be done by placing moxa sticks in moxa box, which allows the moxa to burn and warm the area without anyone holding it there.
We use smokeless moxa and moxa boxes at the clinic, however in special circumstances the direct method may be used.
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Tian Chao Herbs & Acupuncture