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The Healing Benefits of Moxibustion

I am always being asked by my patients about the therapeutic benefits of moxibustion. Indeed, there is often intrigue when I burn a moxa stick during a session. The distinctive smell can be quite intoxicating and its effects can be both invigorating and sedating at the same time. But what is it and how does it work?


What is Moxibustion?

Moxibustion is a traditional technique which is over 2500 years old! It involves the burning of a medicinal herb known as” moxa”” (artemisia mugwort) over acupuncture points. It is an integral therapeutic component of the practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and is still widely used throughout the world, particularly still in China and in countries like Japan, Korea and Vietnam. In fact, when I was studying in China and working in a local hospital there back in the early 2000s there were wards devoted solely to moxibustion treatment. I have fond memories of entering these wards to check in on a patient and being greeted with wafts of thick heavily scented smoke. Although moxibustion often is practiced a little differently over here, (usually we use the smokeless version!) it still has great therapeutic value as an adjunct treatment to acupuncture in our clinics.


Why use moxibustion?

Moxibustion can be an effective tool in addressing a wide variety of conditions. In TCM terms it is said to invigorate blood and qi, dissolve stasis, warm the channels and internal organs, nourish the qi and yang aspects of the body and dispel pathogens. In layman’s terms it promotes circulation, alleviates pain and expels cold and other pathogenic factors from the body. I use it on all of my patients who have pain, whether it be musculo skeletal or gynaecological. I also like to use it on patients with digestive issues or those clients who are generally just cold. I frequently see women with hypothyroidism and they are always cold. They often feel much better after some moxa therapy!


How is it applied?

Moxibustion can be administered directly or indirectly. Direct moxibustion involves the application of moxa directly to the skin or on the top of the needle where it is lit and allowed to burn. I find that this method can get a bit messy and there is higher risk of burning the patient. So, I always use indirect moxibustion where there is no direct contact with the skin. Using this method, I light a smokeless moxa stick and hold it over the acupuncture point a few centimetres away from the skin. To me this method is far safer and just as effective. I have always been an avid user of moxa in the clinic. I actually think it is not used enough by other acupuncturists. Patients often respond quite quickly to its effects and as a bonus they usually find it quite relaxing. Indeed, I find it such and effective and useful technique to address a wide variety of conditions from chronic pain to digestive disorders.

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Find us

Address: 214/100 Victoria Parade, East Melbourne


Welcome to the Innate Harmony website: the website of Danielle Baker, Registered Acupuncturist (AHPRA). Danielle has been providing acupuncture services in East Melbourne for over 15 years. She offers expertise and experience utilising Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese medicine to address a wide range of health concerns with a particular emphasis on women’s health, fertility, stress management and pain related disorders.

Service Areas

Melbourne, CBD, Richmond, South Yarra, Fitzroy, Carlton, Hawthorn, Kew, Prahran, Abbotsford, Clifton Hill, Collingwood, Toorak, Brunswick, Richmond.


Services Provided

Electro Acupuncture
Herbal Medicine (Pill and capsule formulas)
Chinese Dietary Therapy
Lifestyle Advice
Food as Medicine

To find out more about the conditions we treat, please call us on 96504111 to speak to Danielle directly or complete the online form.


Service Hours

Monday to Friday: 10.00am to 7.00pm
Saturday: 8.30am to 3.00pm
(IVF support treatments available outside these hours by appointment)
Address: 214/100 Victoria Parade, East Melbourne

Phone: (03) 9650 4111