Despite its 2,500-year history in China, many Americans were unfamiliar with the benefits of acupuncture or considered it a mysterious form of health care. However, since 1972, shortly after President Richard Nixon traveled to China to open diplomatic relations, the use of acupuncture in the U.S. has rapidly grown to become more mainstream.
“Western medicine looks at the body like a machine and the doctor is the mechanic, making repairs,” explained Dr. Ann Losee, Doctor of Oriental Medicine, owner and practitioner at Edgewood Acupuncture Wellness. “Chinese medicine approaches the body as more like a garden, and the doctor, as the gardener, must be knowledgeable of the many factors at play needed to cultivate and maintain a healthy garden.”
Losee, who is licensed by the state of New Mexico, opened her practice in Edgewood 13 years ago, shortly after moving to Tijeras with her family. She holds a four-year Masters’ degree from International Institute of Oriental Medicine, formerly in Albuquerque.
In her practice, Losee treats patients of all ages using multiple modalities such as acupuncture, cupping, moxibustion, herbal and nutritional counseling for a wide array of patient conditions, treating them with hair-thin acupuncture needles. She says the needle placement triggers endorphins and most people find it relaxing to the point of dozing off.
With the rise in conventional use of strong opioid pain medications, many patients are seeking out natural alternatives. Losee says acupuncture offers a drug-free method to help people “manage their pain, instead of pain managing them.” Working with a prescribing doctor, she creates a pain management plan that allows most patients to taper off medications and, instead, use acupuncture and therapeutic massage to control pain.
Several other practitioners provide services at Edgewood Acupuncture Wellness, making it the East Mountain’s central facility for alternative healthcare. Hours vary by practitioner and each works primarily by appointment. Losee, who typically takes appointments six days per week, can be reached at 505-281-9555. She also offers a veterans’ clinic on the first Friday of each month, where veterans can receive a free acupuncture treatment.
Chiropractic medicine is available by Dr. Norman Toy 505-263-5506 or Dr. Heath Alvidrez 505-721-9024; and therapeutic massage provided by Chandra Martin who can be reached at 505-306-7818 and Rachel Erwin, at 505-934-7880. Edgewood Acupuncture Wellness is located at 2 Marietta Court in Edgewood.