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General Questions

Why choose alternative medicine?

You invest money into your house, your car, your friends and family, but what about your health? Acupuncture, herbal medicine and other holistic healing methods we offer are small investments you can make to significantly change your life. Allow us to help you understand the root of your problem and rather than masking the symptoms,  resolve your issues through natural techniques so you can live free of any issues. Invest in your greatest asset, yourself and together let’s embark on a journey to finding your health, happiness and setting a foundation to a brighter future.

There is no minimum or maximum age restriction when it comes to treatments at Zen & Tonic. We will take age and current health status into consideration to tailor the treatment and plan to meet the specific needs of the individual.

Yes of course! There are many precautions taken with pregnant patients. In acupuncture, for example, certain areas will not be needled due to contraindications. Certain areas/methods will change over time with the patient, and the progression of the pregnancy. In herbal medicine and holistic nutrition there are many advantages to expecting mothers. Your protocol will be personalized specifically to your needs and the fetus as it develops. Thus be sure to advise your practitioner as soon as possible.


Before & After Treatment

What is to be expected when I come in for my first treatment?

For your first treatment you should plan on spending 90 minutes with us. Your session will begin with an in-depth intake of your entire health history, including you current health. It is important for us to understand your complete health picture as well as understand the goals you want to attain. The more information you give us, the better able we are to create a personalized plan to help you achieve your goals.  Depending on the modality, your initial visit may also include a treatment. At the end of your session, an individualized health plan will be created for you based on the information you shared. In the plan, we ensure that when you’re not in the clinic, and at home, doing your day-to-day, you have direction in continuing your journey towards wellness.

If possible, please try to wear comfortable clothing for your appointment and bring a pair of shorts and or tank. Depending on your treatment needs, you may remain fully clothed during your treatment or you may need to bear you legs, back, torso, etc.  Linens are always available if you would prefer to partially disrobe or if your treatment makes partial disrobing appropriate.

Please eat sensibly a few hours before your appointment and avoid caffeine. It is best to be neither hungry nor extremely full during your treatment as we want your body to feel calm and relaxed.

Unfortunately, not all services at Zen & Tonic can be claimed through your insurance. Many insurance plans offer coverage for acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment. Contact your insurance company directly to find out what your plan covers, and any limits to the number of treatments. Acupuncture may also be covered if you sustained a workplace injury or were injured in a motor vehicle accident.


Treatment Specific Questions

In Acupuncture, does it hurt when the needles are inserted?

The sensation can range from nothing at all to the feeling of a slight pricking. There are cases where a slight spasm will occur due to muscles contracting or nerves being stimulated.

Each person has a different recovery time, even those with the same issues. The number of sessions will vary and will eventually be re-evaluated.

Acupuncture can cause bruising after a treatment and may result in some tenderness. Generally, acupuncture is only dangerous when performed by someone who’s not adequately trained. In such a case, puncturing a lung causing pneumothorax is a risk. Only accept acupuncture treatments from trained professionals. This is great knowledge for you to have as you can request to see the needling technique if you’re worried. Muscle spasms occasionally occur, which isn’t a bad thing. Sometimes you want the stimulation, depending on the case. It only occurs if a nerve is stimulated, or the sinews of the muscles contract, which may be at first slightly uncomfortable, but is beneficial in the end.


Herbal FAQ

What is herbal medicine and how does it work?

Herbal medicine is the use of medicinal herbs and botanicals for their therapeutic and healing qualities. It is the oldest and most widely used form of medicine due to its powerful healing techniques that encourage optimal health and well-being throughout the whole body. Herbs work alongside and support the body’s innate healing capabilities and thus effectively prevent and treat disease. Implementing herbal medicine into your lifestyle can allow you to restore balance and health to your life both physically, mentally and emotionally.

Herbal medicine is not currently regulated in Canada. However, in Ontario, the OHA (Ontario Herbalists Association) has taken it upon themselves to govern working herbalists for the safety of the public and refer to members as Registered Herbalists. At Zen & Tonic our herbalist is part of the OHA.

As herbal medicine is not currently regulated, insurance companies unfortunately do not offer coverage.

This is dependant on which medications you are currently taken. For the most part, herbs are extremely safe but there are some known contraindications.  Please be sure to discuss all medications and supplements you are taking or have previously taken with the Herbalist. This is extremely important as some herbs can potentiate, negatively react with or nullify certain medications. Thus, a specific herbal formula will be created with this information in mind. It is advisable to let your medical doctor know the herbs you are taking. Do not self-medicate with herbs.

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Nutritionist FAQ

What is a Certified Nutritional Practitioner (CNP)?

A Certified Nutritional Practitioner is a form of Holistic Nutritionist and is a graduate of the Institute of Holistic Nutrition. CNP’s are educated and qualified to create personalized nutrition and lifestyle programs to aid the individual as a whole, in attaining optimal health. With a world full of questionable health trends, life overflowing with work and daily stressors; a Certified Nutritional Practitioner can help you separate nutritional facts from nutritional hypes. Together you can devise an integrative nutritional program that caters to your specific needs, physically and emotionally.

A Holistic Nutritionist’s goal is to instill balance in an individual’s life through, diet, exercise and lifestyle changes. They provide simple techniques to introduce a wholesome diet, full of nutritional foods, herbs and food treatments for chronic health conditions. After all, you are what you eat! Similar to Holistic Nutritionists, Dieticians are nutrition and food experts and access client needs. However, Dieticians generally follow the Canadian Food guide requirements and may not emphasize the connection between diet and disease as nutritionists do.


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