Here at 1st Choice Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine, we have an array of different treatments to help you on your path to wellness. Being the largest acupuncture clinic on the Eastside allows us to have a range of complementary practitioners all in the same location.

Feel free to read below about the different treatments we offer.


Acupuncture 針灸

Acupuncture Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureAcupuncture is among the oldest healing practices in the world. The earliest recorded use of acupuncture dates from 2000 BCE. Acupuncture is a treatment based on Chinese medicine — a system of healing that dates back thousands of years. At the core of Chinese medicine is the notion that a type of life force, or energy, known as “Qi” flows through energy pathways (meridians) in the body. Each meridian corresponds to one organ, or group of organs, that governs particular bodily functions. Achieving the proper flow of qi is thought to create health and wellness. Qi maintains the dynamic balance of yin and yang, which are complementary opposites. According to Chinese medicine, everything in nature has both yin and yang. An imbalance of qi (too much, too little, or blocked flow) causes disease. To restore balance to the qi, an acupuncturist inserts needles at points along the meridians. These acupuncture points are places where the energy pathway is close to the surface of the skin.

In addition to history intake, the acupuncturist may take your pulse at several points along the wrist and look at the shape, color, and coating of your tongue. The acupuncturist may also look at the color and texture of your skin, your posture, and other physical characteristics that offer clues to your health.

Acupuncture is known to treat a wide range of disorders including:

  • Neurological conditions such as headaches, migraines, difficulty sleeping, nervous tension, stroke, some forms of deafness, facial and intercostal neuralgia, trigeminal neuralgia, some forms of paralysis, sequelae of poliomyelitis, peripheral neuropathy, noises in the ears, dizziness, and Meniere’s disease.
  • Cardiovascular disorders such as high or low blood pressure, fluid retention, chest pain, angina pectoris, poor circulation, cold hands and feet, and muscle cramps.
  • Respiratory conditions such as bronchial asthma, acute and chronic bronchitis, acute tonsillitis, rhinitis, sinusitis, hay fever, chronic cough, laryngitis, sore throat, influenza and the common cold.
  • Digestive system disorders such as toothache, post-extraction pain, gingivitis, mouth ulcers, hiccough, spasms of the esophagus, gastric and duodenal ulcers, gastric hyperacidity, gastritis, heartburn, hiatus hernia syndrome, flatulence, paralytic ileus, colitis, diarrhea, constipation, hemorrhoids, liver and gallbladder disorders, and weight control.
  • Urogenital disorders such as cystitis, prostatitis, low sexual vitality, urinary retention, kidney disorders, nocturnal enuresis, and neurogenic bladder dysfunction.
  • Gynecological and obstetric disorders such as premenstrual tension, painful, heavy or irregular, or the absence of periods, abnormal uterine bleeding or discharge, hormonal disturbances, disorders associated with menopause, prolapse of the uterus or bladder, difficulty with conception, and morning sickness.
  • Skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, nerve rash, herpes zoster, acne, scar tissue and resultant adhesions, hair loss and dandruff.
  • Eye conditions such as visual disorders, red, sore, itchy or watery eyes, conjunctivitis, simple cataracts, myopia in children, and central retinitis.
  • Musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoarthritis, sciatica, lumbago, weak back, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, tenosynovitis, shoulder and neck pain, cervicobrachial syndrome, ‘frozen shoulder’, and ‘tennis elbow’.
  • Sporting injuries such as sprained ankles and knees, cartilage problems, corking and tearing of muscles, torn ligaments and bruises.
  • Psychological conditions such as depression, phobias, emotional disturbances, anxiety, nervousness and addictions such as smoking.

Research also found that acupuncture works on vascular as well as neurological levels. By promoting better circulation and nerve function, many acute and chronic medical ailments can be effectively alleviated and even diminished. If you have any of the above symptoms, or even something that is not listed here and you are wondering if acupuncture may be a good alternative, just give us a call to schedule a free consultation with our doctor.

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Chinese Herbal Medicine 中藥

Chinese Herbal Medicine Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureChinese herbal medicine is also an integral part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and a very important one. Chinese herbal therapy works coherently with acupuncture by providing the nourishing support for the energetic “re-programming” and “rebalancing” efforts of acupuncture.

The origins of Chinese herbal medicine in China can be traced back at least 5000 years, making it one of the oldest and most long-standing health care systems in the world.

Before pharmaceuticals (and even acupuncture itself) herbal remedies were used to heal and balance the human body. Chinese Herbal Medicine is a very powerful tool and can be used in a variety of different ways: to augment the treatment of a specific imbalance, working together with other medicines or sometimes in place of acupuncture and other medicines. Unlike most pharmaceutical and over the counter drugs, Chinese Herbal Medicine prescriptions are individually made for each patient.

When used in carefully selected combinations, herbs offer the body support, working to maintain the best balance of all internal systems. Unlike pharmaceuticals which usually come with numerous side-effects, Chinese Herbal Medicine is a much safer alternative, especially in treating chronic medical problems. The reason that it is very safe for our body is because in order to construct a certain herbal formula, an experienced herbalist always carefully follows the principle of using four groups of herbs. The primary group of herbs target at the main action. For instance, when someone comes in with lower back pain, the primary group would focus on moving the blood stasis. The secondary group of herbs would assist the primary action to moving the blood stasis. The tertiary groups of herbs would focus on other complaints related to the main complaints; in this case lower back pain usually causes sleep problems. Therefore the tertiary group would help to calm the nervous system and ease pain while promoting better sleep. The last group of herbs’ job is just as important as first three. It harmonizes all other herbs and reduces any possible side-effects from those herbs. As you can see, an experienced herbalist would never prescribe a single herb unless it is for a specific function. Herbs are always prescribed in a form of formula that may consist of 4-20 herbs with an appropriate radio to enhance the treatment result and reduce side-effects.

1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine will work with patients to prescribe unique, individualized herbal formulation that works either on a continual basis to build overall health, or on a short-term basis to address a specific problem. We only use the finest grade of Chinese herbal medicine available. All our herbal products must pass 15 tests at the manufacturer before they are bottled, such include total and individual heavy metal tests, pesticide test, total yeast and mold test, E.coli test, salmonella test, total bacterial count test etc. You can rest assured that our herbal products not only deliver great results, but are also of the best quality available.

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LLLA (Low Level Laser Acupuncture) 雷射針灸

Laser acupuncture offers a great alternative to traditional acupuncture especially among younger children and sensitive types in which the regular needles are not suitable. Instead of using acupuncture needles, we use the industry’s best laser probe to administer low-level laser onto acupuncture points to treat various medical ailments. Our laser probe is a Class IIIb laser device that is very safe to use on the skin. There’s no needling sensation when applied and since the laser beam is pulsed usually no heat sensation can be felt. It is extremely safe for younger children to experience their first acupucture sessions without the fear of ‘getting shots’.

LLLT or Lower Level Laser Therapy has been researched and applied medically for over three decades. It is now a relatively new alternative to regular acupuncture therapy until recent years. Due to its many advantages including painless sensation during the session as well as its clinical efficacy, it has gradually gained more and more popularity in Asian and European countries.

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Shonishin Pediatric Acupuncture 小児はり

Shonishin pediatric acupuncture (sho = little, ni = children, shin = needle) is a highly specialized form of treatment therapy for infants and children that originated in the Kansai region of Japan about 400 years ago. Although Shonishin was usually practiced as a family tradition that was kept within the family and passed down through the generations, it was made public after World War II when Dr. Hidetaro Mori began openly teaching this style of pediatric therapy.

Shonishin pediatric therapy is very different from the style of acupuncture typically used on adults. When performing shonishin the practitioner uses a wide variety of tools to stimulate the acupressure points instead of using regular needles. The treatment consists of pressing, rubbing, tapping, or light scraping of the skin to provide a gentle stimulation that will improve the severity of the child’s current symptoms as well as strengthen their overall constitution.

The treatment is, in essence, a form of bodywork that utilizes specialized techniques within the framework of Traditional Oriental Medicine to balance the child’s energy and stimulate or sedate the energetic pathways as needed. Since this is non-invasive and non-threatening to the child, the children often enjoy their treatments and look forward to continuing their therapy. In addition, some of these techniques can be taught to the parents so that the treatment can be reinforced on a daily basis at home. Some of the most common conditions treated include:

• Coughs
• Allergies
• Fever
• Asthma
• ADD and ADHD
• Bed Wetting
• Digestive Disorders
• Colic
• Sleep Disorders
• Symptomatic treatment of
• Autistic Spectrum Disorder
• Pediatric Pain
• Failure to thrive


BEMER Technology


1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine is excited to announce our new addition to our services – BEMER technology, a state of the art non-invasive biophysical device that is the only one of its kind registered with the FDA as a Class I medical device. We are the very 1st acupuncture clinic in the State of Washington to incorporate this technology along with acupuncture and herbal medicine.

BEMER uses a low level pulsed electromagnetic field, with a range similar to that of the earth’s geomagnetic field, to stimulate molecular activity in the cells and support the body’s amazing self healing mechanisms. It optimizes the body’s own natural vitality and well being, helps increase blood flow by 30% with no side effects, so your body can work efficiently, heal itself, and you feel good again!

BEMER therapy is a complex method that optimizes energy production by the individual cells (ATP) through improved circulation and increased oxygen utilization, thereby contributing to the overall regulation of the body’s metabolism.

Based on these facts and the benefits observed in patients with a range of severe physical disabilities we can safely say that BEMER therapy is an important and essential foundation for strengthening the body’s self-healing mechanisms, supporting other treatment measures, and decreasing the side effects of prescription medications.

The benefits of BEMER can be summarized as the following:

  • Safe without negative side-effects
  • Non-invasive
  • Improves micro- and macro-circulation
  • Improves oxygenation of the blood
  • Improves the bloods ability to transport the available oxygen
  • Strengthens the body’s own immune system
  • Improves vitality and “energy”
  • Compatible with any and all other therapies

Documentation of the effect of BEMER technology with animation and explanations by specialists /

Award Ceremony – Medical Week in Baden-Baden

Ready to try out your first BEMER session? Please call 425-392-8881 to book a free session with us.

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Auricular Therapy

Auricular Therapy Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureAuricular Therapy is a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine which utilizes acupuncture needles or tiny herbal seeds called Wang Bu Liu Xing Zi to stimulate reflex points associated with internal functions.

The theory behind auricular acupuncture is based on the idea that the ear is a microsystem with the entire body represented on the outer portion of the ear. With numerous studies to back up this theory, the modern development of auricular therapy is now widely accepted by both alternatives as well as mainstream medical doctors.

Here at 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine our auricular therapy follows the system developed by a renown modern auricular medicine doctor Dr. Huang Li-Chun. Her revolutionized theory and practice is far more effective than the French system which is being taught at most acupuncture institutes in the US and Europe.

Auricular therapy is usually done with tiny auricular needles, but we do offer a non-invasive treatment using small herbal seeds instead for younger adults or anyone who may be needle-sensitive.

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Qigong Meditation

Qigong Meditation Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureOur body is not just composed of matter, like muscles, bones, and blood. There’s something else that Traditional Chinese Medicine discovered 5,000 years ago. It is called Qi, or Chi in Mandarin.

Qi is the non substantial matter that circulates in our body in order to keep us alive, to make our body function. With roots in Chinese medicine, martial arts, and philosophy, qigong is traditionally viewed as a practice to cultivate and balance qi or what has been translated as “intrinsic life energy”. Through the practice of Qigong, one is able to develop human potential, allow access to higher realms of awareness, and awaken one’s “true nature”. Qigong is now practiced throughout China and worldwide, and is considered by some to be exercise, and by others to be a type of alternative medicine or meditative practice.

According to a recent study in Japan, Qigong practice can prolong one’s life for as long as twenty years! Qigong’s literal translation means the practice of air dynamics in the body. It is a practice of aligning breath, movement, and awareness for exercise, healing, and meditation.

At 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine, we use guided Qigong meditation to help our patients to free up the stagnant energy flow which often time is the main cause for many ailments such as body ache and pain. We also teach Qigong exercises to our patients in order to help them build up their own energy. We deeply believe in self-healing and everyone has the ability to do so. To ‘activate’ this mechanism, Qigong is the key.

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Acupressure Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureAcupressure is an ancient therapy developed over 5,000 years ago as an important aspect of Asian. It is a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine. It uses precise finger placement and pressure over Acupuncture points along the body to promote internal circulation, thus improve health and wellness.

Please check our calendar for the next Acupressure class taught by our medical director.

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Nutritional Therapy

Nutritional Therapy Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureNutritional therapy is one of the most important aspects of Chinese Medicine. During our session we would give dietary suggestion to our patients simply because it is truly a key to optimum health.

Schedule an appointment for a nutritional consultation today and begin your healing journey with your next meal.

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Bellevue 1st Choice Acupuncture MoxibustionMoxibustion is a process of burning the mugwort, or Ai Ye on acupuncture point in order to promote health and wellbeing. Mugwort has long been recognized as one of the best herbal medicine to invigorate the blood circulation and warms up the interior. It is particularly indicated for those who have the chronic allergy, or those suffer from bad circulation with cold extremities.

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Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathic Medicine Bellevue 1st Choice AcupunctureWhat is Naturopathic Medicine?

Naturopathic medicine is a distinct and comprehensive system of primary health care practiced by a naturopathic doctor for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of human health conditions, injuries, and diseases. Naturopathic Medicine is a hybrid between the old and the new. It consists of both modern-day diagnostics and traditional healing methods. It recognizes the person as a whole and that all aspects of an individual must be functioning properly for true health to be accomplished.

Naturopathic doctors are state-licensed practitioners who perform physical exams, order lab testing, and prescribe a variety of natural treatments, including clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy, physical medicine, hormone replacement therapy, and pharmaceutical agents when warranted. In naturopathic medicine, wellness means more than the absence of pain and disease. It’s having the energy to work and enjoy life to its fullest potential. We can help restore health by supporting the body’s inherent healing mechanisms using natural and conventional methods.

Naturopathic Philosophy

Th eight philosophies that unite Naturopathic Doctors are:

  1. First, do no harm (Primum Non Nocere) – Naturopathic physicians utilize methods and medicinal substances which minimize the risk of harmful effects, and apply the least possible force or intervention necessary to diagnose illness and restore health. Whenever possible the suppression of symptoms is avoided as suppression generally interferes with the healing process. Treatments are meant to help the patient in their journey towards health. Any therapies should be working with the body, not against it.
  2. The healing power of nature (Vis Medicatrix Naturae) – The healing power of nature is the inherent self-organizing and healing process of living systems. Naturopathic medicine recognizes this healing process to be ordered and intelligent. It is the naturopathic physician’s role to support, facilitate and augment this process by identifying and removing obstacles to health and recovery, and by supporting the creation of a healthy internal and external environment. Every person has a healing power within them. In simple terms, your body knows what it is doing and most of the time we should simply be there to help and support it.
  3. Find and treat the cause (Tolle Causam) – Every illness has an underlying cause, often in aspects of the lifestyle, diet or habits of the individual. A naturopathic physician is trained to find and remove the underlying cause of a disease.
  4. Treat the whole person (Tolle Totum) – Health or disease comes from a complex interaction of mental, emotional, spiritual, physical, dietary, genetic, environmental, lifestyle, and other factors. Naturopathic physicians treat the whole person, taking these factors into account. Every person is a complex network of different systems. It is impossible to look at one system without considering every other system, all must all be taken into account in order to achieve ultimate health.
  5. Doctor as teacher (Docere) – The original meaning of the word “doctor” is teacher. A principal objective of naturopathic medicine is to educate the patient and emphasize self-responsibility for health. Naturopathic physicians also recognize and employ the therapeutic potential of the doctor-patient relationship.
  6. Prevention – Always the best form of medicine. The naturopathic approach to health care can prevent minor illnesses from developing into more serious diseases. Patients are taught the principles with which to live a healthy life and by following these principles, they can prevent major illnesses. Taking time today to be good to your body is the best thing that you can do for tomorrow, both physically, emotionally, and financially. One study showed that spending $1 in preventative care saved $4 in healthcare later on.
  7. Respect Individual Integrity – Everyone has their own beliefs about life and medicine and it is our job to treat the patient in alignment with their life situation.
  8. Wellness – Establishing and maintaining optimum health and balance. Wellness is a state of being healthy, characterized by positive emotion, thought, and action. Wellness is inherent in everyone no matter what disease(s) are being experienced. If wellness is really recognized and experienced by an individual, it will more quickly heal a given disease than direct treatment of the disease alone.

Education & Credentials

Naturopathic physicians undergo training that is similar in structure and scope to that of medical and osteopathic physicians. Naturopathic medical colleges/universities are four-year graduate schools with rigorous admissions requirements comparable to other medical schools. The Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (ND) degree is awarded after classroom, clinic and practical study.

Naturopathic physicians are trained in medical sciences, extensive study of naturopathic philosophy and therapeutics including therapeutic nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy, hydrotherapy, physical medicine, manipulative therapy, and counseling. Because coursework in natural therapeutics is added to a standard medical curriculum, naturopathic doctors often receive significantly more hours of classroom education in these areas.

Naturopathic Therapies

Clinical Nutrition and Dietary Therapy

When a body becomes ill, nutritional medicine calls for higher, therapeutic doses of basic nutrients to address illnesses and disorders. It is effective in addressing diseases of deficiency that may be caused by poor diet or extreme environmental factors. Many medical conditions can be treated more effectively with foods and nutritional supplements than they can by other means, with fewer complications and side effects. Examination of the diet for sensitivities, allergies, and/or deficiencies is the basis for restoring health. Clinical nutrition is the use of both dietary therapy as well as the careful recommendation of researched vitamins, minerals and/or other nutriceuticals.

Herbal Medicine

Most European countries recognize the effectiveness of medicinal plants, include them in their official pharmacopoeias and regulate them as drugs or over-the-counter remedies. Naturopathic physicians are trained in drug-herb interactions to insure safety with the use of herbal medicines. Naturopathic physicians fuse centuries’ worth of traditional knowledge about herbal medicine with the enormous amount of ongoing scientific research on botanical medicine to treat many health conditions.

IV Therapy

Intravenous Micronutrient Therapy (IVMT) is the therapeutic use of nutrients (i.e. vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants) administered directly into the bloodstream. Once Intravenous therapy is initiated it delivers the nutrients directly into the bloodstream and often works more efficiently and successfully compare to oral intake because it bypasses the GI tract and no longer relies on the GI tract for it limited absorption of these nutrients.

There are numerous conditions that improve with the utilization of IV therapy. Physicians can tailor the IV protocol by evaluating for deficiencies and tailoring and individualizing the amounts and forms of nutrients to each patient’s specific needs. With many illnesses, the IV treatment provides temporary assistance to the body to give the cells the nutrient boost they need in order jumpstart the body towards curing itself. The goal is to discontinue IV treatment as the body takes over the healing process.

Craniosacral Therapy

Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, hands-on approach that involves “listening with the fingers” to the body’s subtle rhythms and any patterns of inertia and congestion that releases tensions deep in the body to relieve pain and dysfunction. Craniosacral therapy takes a whole-person approach to healing. The interconnections of the mind, body and spirit are acknowledged as well as how the body reflects experiences and retains the memory of trauma. It is an effective form of treatment for a wide variety of illnesses, helping to create the optimal conditions for health, encouraging vitality and facilitating a sense of well being. Craniosacral is suitable or people of all ages, including babies, children and the elderly, for acute or chronic cases.

Visceral Manipulation

Visceral Manipulation (VM) is a gentle hands-on therapy that enhances the mobility and tissue motion of the organs of the visceral system (the heart, liver, intestines and other internal organs) to locate and alleviate any abnormal points of tension throughout the body. VM is used to locate and solve problems that develop due to constrictions in the viscera which can have impacts throughout the body’s internal systems, as well as external musculoskeletal systems. These delicate techniques can alter and improve the entire body by enhancing the structure of the organs and the systems they function within.

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Craniosacral Therapy

What is CST (Craniosacral Therapy) ?

When we have an injury or overwhelming experience – whether it be physical or emotional, recent or way back in the past – our body remembers it. It’s a natural response for our body and its tissues to contract in order to protect us during these events. The healthy response after the event for the body is to let go of this contraction. However, it sometimes isn’t able to do so. This is where Craniosacral Therapy (CST) comes in. CST helps to release the underlying holding patterns in the body so it can return to health.

What can CST help with?
Craniosacral therapy takes a whole-person approach. It works very deeply to release several fixed patterns in the body and its tissues, including muscle, fascia and the nervous system. So it has far-reaching effects on many areas of health. Some of the symptoms it can help with are:

Anxiety and Tension/Stress
Arthritis/Joint Disorders
Back Pain/Limbs pain/Muscular Pain
Central Nervous System Issues
Chronic Fatigue/Depression
Chronic Neck and Back Pain
Digestive Problems/GERD
Hormonal Problems/Menopause symptoms
Insomnia/Sleep Disorders
Immune System Disorder
Poor Healing from Sprains/Strains
TMJ Dysfunction…and more.

What can I expect from a session?
Each session involves the client sitting or lying fully clothed on a treatment table.The practitioner will make very light contact for the duration of the session on various areas of the body – often the feet, the lower back or the back of the head. In doing this the practitioner will promote release of the holding patterns. Clients often feel a number of sensations, such as tingling, heat or small internal movements as the body adjusts. Sometimes the client may feel so relaxed and fall asleep. Each individual responds at a different pace. While some might experience immediate relief, it may also take up to several sessions to be able to fully evaluate its effectiveness.

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