Moxibustion is a technique that involves the burning of mugwort, a small, spongy herb, to facilitate healing. It has been used throughout Asia for thousands of years. The purpose of moxibustion is to strengthen the blood, stimulate the flow of qi, and maintain general health.
Indirect Moxibustion, one of the modalities at Re Nu Mi, roughly the shape and size of a cigar, and holds it close to the area being treated for several minutes until the area turns red. It is used on people who have a cold or stagnant condition. The burning of moxa is believed to expel cold and warm the meridians, which leads to smoother flow of blood and qi.
Mugwort, also known as artemesia vulgaris or ai ye in Chinese, has a long history of use in folk medicine. Research has shown that it acts as an emmenagogue that is, an agent that increases blood circulation to the pelvic area and uterus and stimulates menstruation. This could explain its use in treating breech births and menstrual cramps.
Although moxibustion has been safely used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries, it is not for everyone. Because it is used specifically for patients suffering from cold or stagnant constitutions, it should not be used on anyone diagnosed with too much heat. Burning moxa also produces a great deal of smoke and a pungent odor. Patients with respiratory problems may request that their practitioner use smokeless moxa sticks as an alternative.